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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

EBFL Premier Division Match Report (20/11/2021): Hype Train FC vs. Stoke Poges FC

Hype Train FC will be playing across both Saturday and Sunday next season, with the team competing in the East Berkshire Football League and the Reading & District Sunday League. You can follow all of the team's season coverage right here as we provide match reports and photo galleries from our third season as a club! All aboard.

Match Report: Hype Train FC vs. Stoke Poges FC

Date: Saturday 20th November 2021

Competition: EBFL Premier Division (Game 3)

Opposition: Stoke Poges FC

Location: Calcot Recreation Ground, Calcot, Reading, RG31 4XD

Final Score: Hype Train FC 2-3 Stoke Poges FC

Photographer: Sam Austin (@HypeTrainSam)

Match Report:

Our encounter against Stoke Poges was the team's second home outing in the East Berkshire Football League (EBFL) Premier Division this season, with this a follow up from last week's 4-0 home win over Lambourn Sports in the Charles Twelftree Trophy This was the team's fifth competitive league outing against Stoke Poges, having now played Poges in every divisional league within the EBFL - and the first team we have played 5+ times.

The game between the two didn't take more than 5 minutes to break into life, with the hosts taking a lead following a throw from the left-flank. Phil Newport would control the ball and prod it into the path of Leon Mannion who took a touch and hit a shot with his right boot, with a Poges defender blocking the shot. The ball fell out to Callum Fox-Spence who took one touch before rifling in a wonderful strike from 25-yards-out, with the Poges goalkeeper left rooted to the spot - in the meantime the away side were arguing with the referee that Mannion was offside in the build-up, but this was overruled.

With another bright start for the team, we were given the chance to double our lead from the penalty spot in the 19th minute when Mannion beat the opposing goalkeeper to a race for the ball inside the penalty area, with the two coming together in a clash of heads. After a lengthy delay, the penalty was awarded and calmly converted to the keeper's left by Phil Newport - the Number 11's second goal in the Premier Division this season.

With the lead established, Poges keeper came alive and made an unbelievably good save from close range to deny Paul Hatfield from range, before making a fingertip save from Newport minutes later as the game approached the half-hour mark. Mannion was also put through on goal at the 35-minute mark but saw his one-on-one effort go wide of the mark.

The visiting side found a route back into the match in the 41st minute after a free-kick was cleared by the team, with Poges midfielder Ryan Manton able to pick up the ball on their right wing, whipping a good cross in to the penalty area that was converted by the head of a Poges player to put the score at 2-1.

We then self-destructed straight from kick-off as we gave the ball away straight away, with George Fradgley bringing down Sam Manton in the penalty area. Ryan Manton then stepped up and coolly slotted his effort to the left of Jake Holloway to put the scores level at 2-2 at the break.

The second-half saw Poges defend and organise well, with Newport drawing another brilliant save from the Poges keeper when he skipped past a pair of defenders before crashing a shot straight down the middle of the goal, and was unable to convert the rebound after the close-range save at a tight angle with his head.

The turnaround for the away team was then complete in the 60th minute when a corner was cleared away by our defensive line, falling straight to their Number 7 who set the ball and lashed it to the far-right of Holloway's goal.

The team's best effort to draw level came late on when good build-up play down the left saw a Mannion cross flashed just wide by Fox-Spence on the head. Largely though, Pogs held their own really well and managed the game to see out the victory - their first of the campaign and our first defeat.

The loss means that we fell to a first defeat in the season after 12 competitive matches, which leaves us on 4 points after 3 games played in EBFL's Premier Division, half-a-dozen games behind the rest of the teams in the division. Next Saturday, the team welcome Pundit FC at Calcot Recreation Ground in league action, whilst the Sunday team are hosting Wraysbury FC in the Berks & Bucks FA Sunday Trophy.

Thoughts from Club Manager, Robert Austin:

"Given some reflection on our game on Saturday, it really was a two-headed snake for us. We played some of our best football of the season in the opening half an hour, commanded a strong lead, but then had our worst minute of football to date to allow Stoke Poges back in to the game. We're kicking ourselves that we conceded twice in a minute and it is a stark lesson in concentration for my team, and one that quite honestly we needed today. We've not been in a single losing position this season and struggled to get to the task when behind - it's sobering for sure and shows how far the team has come this past few months. We'll learn from this though as the standard of the league shows itself today.

I'll give a lot of credit to Stoke Poges today - they did really well to get back into the game and were the better team in the second-half and deserved the win based on how they saw out the game and dug in at times. We can actually learn a lot from their application today. Also, after both teams had to go through an SGM, with member clubs and Committee members voting for both clubs to remain in the Premier Division - it was nice to actually play today against a team at our level who have gone through as many struggles as we have.

Overall though, it wasn't our day at the office and a first defeat means of the season means we have another chance to grow and develop as we head into some massive games to end November and in December."

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Manager: Robert Austin

Starting 11:

GK: Jake Holloway

DEF: George Fradgley

DEF: Callum Gibbons (Knott 70')

DEF: Vincent van Lembergen (C)

DEF: Robert Austin (Ali 80')

MID: Paul Hatfied (Raisa 68')

MID: George Holloway

MID: Phil Newport

MID: Colins Akemche (Parr-Jones 60', Gibbons 85')

MID: Callum Fox-Spence (Hatfield 85')

FOR: Leon Mannion


SUB: Callum Parr-Jones

SUB: Ash Ali

SUB: Ryan Knott

SUB: Abz Raisa

Goals and Assists:

Goal 1: Fox-Spence goal, no assist

Goal 2: Newport goal, Mannion assist

Want to know more about The Hype Train?

The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in general football and Fantasy sports reporting, starting with Fantasy Premier League (FPL), before expanding to MLS Fantasy coverage in 2018.

We pride ourselves in providing beautiful graphics, statistics, in-depth analytical reporting and free weekly insight for hopeful players attempting to climb rankings tables. We are also occasional media reviewers, with a keen interest to review games, live sport, and professional wrestling.

In 2019, Hype Train Football Club was formed, becoming the first Fantasy Football website to take to the field. HTFC is a socially active team across social and web channels, providing regular match highlights, match reports, comprehensive player statistics and unique player profiles. We won both Goal of the Season Awards in the Berkshire and County FA regions, with Callum Parr-Jones winning the Berks & Bucks FA award, whilst Martin King won the PlaySport UK award. In 2021, we formed the Reading Sunday Social League (RSSL), a competitive Sunday League involving 8 teams in its debut season.

The Hype Train were nominated and shortlisted for the 'Best Football Blog' in 2016 by the Football Bloggers Association at their annual Football Blogging Awards (The FBA's), and were again shortlisted as a finalist in 2019 in the 'Best Fantasy Football Blog' category.

You can follow us on Twitter, Like us on Facebook, follow Hype Train FC on Instagram, subscribe to our YouTube channel for exclusive content, visit our club's dedicate website, or visit our website here at

Believe The Hype!

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