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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

EBFL Premier Division Match Report (28/10/2023): Hype Train FC vs. Singh Sabha Slough FC

Welcome aboard the home of Hype Train Football Club. Here, you can read the match reports from the train's outing across Saturday & Sunday League action throughout the 2023/24 season, with the team competing in the East Berkshire Football League (EBFL) and the Reading & District Sunday League (RDSL). All aboard.

Match Report: Hype Train FC

Date: Saturday 21st October 2023

Competition: EBFL Premier Division (Game 10)

Opposition: Singh Sabha Slough FC

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

Final Score: Hype Train FC 3-4 Singh Sabha FC

Match Report:

The train's encounter against Singh Sabha was our 18th competitive match of the 2023/24 season, with the team involved in the East Berkshire Football League's Premier Division. Our latest outing was a 3rd competitive game against Sabha, having drawn our last game 2-2 away from home in March 2022 - a point for the team that ultimately cost Sabha the EBFL Premier Division title during the 2021/22 season.

With a game of 50-odd shots, we'll focus on the core of the action which opened up the game, beginning in the 8th minute when Sabha were able to open the scoring. Starting with both teams battling in midfield, Sabha were able to float a ball to their left winger, who waited for support from a midfielder who eventually received a cut back pass - the midfielder then turned in on his right and produced a top shot that curled to the far-left of the net to open the scoring.

Not allowing Sabha to build on their lead, the equalising effort arrived 4 minutes later in the 12th minute and started when we won a throw in the Sabha half on the left. In a hurry, Leo Pereira has thrown into the feet of a Sabha player who could only flick the ball into immediate danger for their goalkeeper as the loose touch allowed Eme Boateng a virtually open goal, and when he took the ball round the stranded keeper, slotted home to take the game to 1-1.

A hectic opening 20-minutes of chances involving saves for both goalkeepers took another turn in the 18th minute when Sabha's lead was restored. Sabha initially worked the ball out left and ran to the byline before cutting the ball back, though Robert Austin was equal to the initial low drive, which was deflected back towards the middle of the goal. The team were scrambling, and our clearance only fell to a Sabha player, who forced Austin into another save, though the save was only pushed away and allowed an opposing player to tap home from on the line.

The score would remain at 2-1 at half-time, though chances for both teams could have seen a higher scoreline at the break. For Sabha, they were rash with some cut-shots on their right wing, whilst Austin was called into several saves with his feet, as well as picking out a looping shot that was destined for the back post. For the train, a Ciaran Carolan set-piece from just inside our own half picked out Phil Newport, though Sabha's keeper was on hand to save well, whilst Andrew Tafeni was denied on his debut after a right-footed shot was saved inside the penalty area after a good run. The resulting corner in the 34th minute led to both Newport and Callum Gibbons going close with their head, before Eme Boateng struck the bar when the ball was initially cleared away.

The second-half started with a chance that should have seen us draw level during the 47th minute, when Tafeni displayed some wonderful footwork to cut in from the left wing before delivering a rocket of a shot from range, which curled and thunderously struck the bar. Austin was also called into two one-on-one saves from Sabha who found space between the lines to keep the team alive in the game.

The 61st minute then flipped the game on its head again when Tafeni won a corner for the team after running to the byline on the left, which allowed Carolan to put the resulting corner right on the head of Newport on the six-yard-line to bury a head and level up the game - a goal which was Newport's 16th of the season, and Carolan's 13th assist of the campaign!

Sabha just had a habit of restoring their lead and we conceded a sloppy during the 64th minute from a set-piece that allowed them back a cheap lead. Gibbons had initially defended a corner kick with a fine defensive block from a shot at the edge of the box, though we weren't clinical clearing the ball from the near-post corner, which allowed a flick up to hit Gibbons on the way into our own net - and there was nothing the central defender could do to prevent the goal.

The visitors then were given some breathing room in the game in during the 78th minute when they scored a vital 4th goal, which came about when Austin intercepted a through ball in goal, though the ball went out to a Sabha midfielder, and as our defensive line switched off, allowed a shot into a near-unguarded net. Austin was then called into a top save when Sabha cut the ball back to their right midfielder who had the whole goal to aim at, but the goalkeeper got across his line quick to deny what should have been a certain goal for the hosts.

That missed chance allowed the team to still fight in the game and we were given one last glimmer of hope in the game in the 88th minute when Will Longmatey won the ball back in the middle of the back and sprayed the ball out left to Carolan, who cut in from range and fired a precise shot from range that bounced and deceived the keeper before it reached the goal to take the game to 4-3. Sabha to their credit did well to run down the clock and secure the win in an end-to-game game in EBFL's Premier Division.

Next up for the train, we were in action in Reading & District Sunday League's Division 3 against AFC Pangbourne at Calcot Recreation Ground on Sunday 29th October 2023, which was the only game not rained off in RDSL Division 3.

Thoughts from Club Secretary, Robert Austin:

"Upon reflection of the game, I had the chance to speak with Zuf at Sabha and he said the game was very weird, and it's hard to disagree. The pitch was beat up, it rained on and off quite heavily, and both teams either wasted big chances, or were just unlucky.

It's quite surprising there were only 7 goals in truth. We struck the woodwork twice and could have had 2-3 more as well, whilst Sabha battered our goal with chances, and I've been called into more than a dozen saves. Sabha were good on the ball and patient in their build up play, though they vulnerable at the other end, as were we at times, which allowed this to be a very open game filled with chances.

I'd like to congratulate Sabha on their win, they edged the game for sure, and even though I'm disappointed we didn't convert more of our own chances, they can look back at the VEO and argue more in their favour. Again, we had a bare bones squad, though it was a confidence building afternoon as we look to grow and build with each passing game - we're not out of our depth at this level, just need some consistency to be able to kick on and become an actual force."

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Manager: Robert Austin

Starting 11:

GK: Robert Austin

DEF: Anwar Mmanga (Akinbola 74')

DEF: Ajuyah Akatosmisan

DEF: Callum Gibbons

DEF: Leo Pereira

MID: Eme Boateng (Mmanga 84')

MID: Mitchell Saunders

MID: Will Longmatey

MID: Phil Newport

MID: Andrew Tafeni

FOR: Ciaran Carolan


SUB: Nifemi Akinbola

Goals & Assists:

Goal 1: Boateng (goal), Pereira (assist)

Goal 2: Newport (goal), Carolan (assist)

Goal 3: Carolan (goal), Longmatey (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. During the 2021/22 season, we won our first-ever trophy, lifting the East Berkshire Football League's Presidents Cup!

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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