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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

EBFL Division 1 Match Report (17/10/2020): Stoke Poges Saints FC vs. Hype Train FC

Hype Train FC played our third competitive game of the 2020/21 as we continue life in East Berkshire Football League's Division One, with the team travelling to Stoke Poges Saints FC. Read the match report from our visit to Bells Hill Recreation Ground. All aboard.

Match Report: Stoke Poges Saints FC vs. Hype Train FC:

Date: 17th October 2020

Competition: East Berkshire Football League, Division One (Game 3)

Opposition: Stoke Poges Saints FC

Location: Bells Hill Recreation Ground, Stoke Poges, SL2 4EG

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

Photographer: Sam Austin (@HypeTrainSam)

Match Report:

Our trip to Stoke Poges was our third league game of the season and was a follow-up to our 1-0 home win against Hambleden FC at home last week out. Poges in blue kicked-off and threatened from set-pieces in the first-half, utilising their height well and went close with a few headers as they got the better of the early game.

Growing in to the encounter, we caught the home side on the counter twice, with their stand-in goalkeeper Scott Gibson producing a fingertip save to deny Callum Fox-Spence's low and drilled effort at the far-left post. Phil Newport was played through on goal by Jon Watkins just after, with their shot stopper saving well from Newport again.

After testing the team from dead balls throughout the half, just before half-time Stoke Poges took the lead when we were robbed of possession following the clearance of a free-kick, with a cross allowed in to the area - Marin Pendov's clearance fell straight to opposing attacker, Sam Manton, whose header squeezed past Jack Roche and we were unable to clear the ball as the ball trickled in to the net for the lead just before the break.

Much stronger in the second-half, the addition of Chris Marshall pushed the team further up the pitch and within ten minutes of the restart we were rewarded with an equaliser when Rod Stevens deep pass from right back found the feet of Newport, with the Number 9 controlling the ball well before slotting past Gibson in the Stoke Poges net.

With the team in the ascendency we pressed for a second and that nearly arrived when Newport got the better of Gibson and headed just wide when challenging for the ball in the air with Stoke Poges captain, Chris Tierney.

Mounting pressure eventually paid off when Marshall freed Newport down the left-wing, with Newport's low-cross beating every man, though Sammy Seville was on high alert and kept the ball in play as he cut back a lovely cross for Sam Bolwell to place a controlled header in to the bottom left corner to give our travelling side the lead.

Pegged back almost instantly, we conceded a penalty after Dom Clarke was deemed to have handled the ball whilst doing a clearance near the goal line, with their Number 15 hitting a penalty high past Roche for the equaliser.

As both teams pressed for a winner, there was final second drama as Stoke Poges won the game after their skipper, Chris Tierney, won a header in the box, even though there was climbing on our covering defender and an elbow in the neck of our man, and followed up his initial effort to slot home with virtually the last kick of the game.

The squad had one final chance to equalise when the ball fell to Marshall at the edge of the box, with their right-back producing a good tackle to deny the travelling side a point on the road.

Next up for the team, we travel to Cantley Park to take on Wokingham & Emmbrook's Development side in the first group stage game of the Legea Challenge Cup.

Man of the Match: Sam Bolwell (CM)

Sam Bolwell was a starting midfielder and put in a tireless shift in the middle of the park and was rewarded with his first competitive goal in the second-half, after a brilliant pull-back cross from Sammy Seville, with Bolwell controlling his header in to the bottom corner.

Thoughts from Player Manager, Robert Austin:

"After so much hard work was put in to our own comeback, the squad are devastated that we were unable to game manage the occasion and came away with nothing. Both sides put absolutely everything in to the game and we were very unlucky not to get anything.

We weren't at the races so much in the first-half, but had two big chances on the counter to take the lead, but didn't take them. I couldn't have been happier with our application and intensity in the second-half. We created a lot and scored two well-worked goals and could have had a couple more if we were clinical. It's just the old cliche of switching off when you score that hurt us on the day.

Defeat is a part of the beautiful game and chance to learn, grow and develop and we as a unit have to apply some lessons to make sure this doesn't happen again. I too have learnt a lot from this game and I'll shoulder all responsibility for the loss - that will give me sharper edges as we change gears next week in cup competition.

Most teams in the EBFL consider this the YouTube derby and that style of match lived up to that exact billing - this was a combative game with lots of drama, both teams making comebacks after going behind, and a last-gasp goal. It was a match worthy of having the cameras in attendance.

All credit to the home side on showing good character to come back and win in the manner they did. Good luck until the next time we face off later this season!"

Sam Bolwell (left) scored his first goal for the club with a headed effort in the second-half.

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Starting 11:

GK: Jack Roche

DEF: Rod Stevens

DEF: Martin King (Carter 60')

DEF: Marin Pendov

DEF: Robert Austin

MID: Jon Watkins (Seville 53')

MID: Sam Bolwell

MID: Colins Akemche (Marshall 46')

MID: Callum Fox-Spence

MID: Dominic Clarke

FOR: Phil Newport


SUB: Sam Seville

SUB: Jamie Carter

SUB: Chris Marshall

Goals & Assists:

Goal 1: Newport (goal), Stevens (assist)

Goal 2: Bolwell (goal), Seville (assist)

The team rally together before kick-off.

Want to know more about The Hype Train?

The Hype Train is an entertainment website founded in 2015, specialising in 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.

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, or visit our website here at

All aboard.

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