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  • Writer's pictureRobert Austin

Reading & District Sunday League Match Report (20/11/2022): Hype Train FC vs. Southbank FC

Hype Train FC will be playing across both Saturday and Sunday next season, with the team primarily competing in 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 fourth season as a club! All aboard.

Match Report: Hype Train FC

Date: Sunday 20th November 2022

Competition: RDSL Division 3 (10:30am KO)

Opposition: Southbank FC

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

Final Score: Hype Train FC 5-0 Southbank FC

Photographer: Sam Austin (@HypeTrainSam)

Match Report:

The train's encounter against Southbank FC was the team's 10th competitive outing of the 2022/23 season, with the team at home down at Calcot Recreation Ground in RDSL Division 3. This was the club's second encounter against Southbank this season, beating our visitors 4-3 on penalties after a 3-3 draw in the first round of the RDSL Industrial Cup.

In a game that took some going to get off the ground, a calm start slowly ramped up and escalated as the first-half escalated. Leon Mannion twice got into good goalscoring opportunities, facing the roulette of the ball's connection with very long grass down at Calcot - with the second shot looping high and forcing Southbank's goalkeeper into a save. Sam Bolwell would also draw a save from the opposing shot-stopper, whilst multiple set-pieces provided nearly moments.

The 22nd minute changed the match for the hosts and started when Phil Newport was throw on goal on the left wing, brought down just outside of the penalty area. Tom Williams then took the set-piece from 20-yards-out on the left, which was flicked on by Newport, and then swept home by Mannion, to give the team the lead!

As the game was boiling over with some moments of bad temper, the half would end with a priceless goal for the train, starting with a throw in that is worked from the left to Williams, who then found the feet of Callum Parr-Jones, with CPJ turning a Southbank central defender before playing in Mannion, who cut on his left at the edge of the box with his first touch, before burying his shot with the second, taking the team into half-time with a 2-0 lead.

A feisty opening of the second-half took 10 minute to calm down, with one notable chance that fell invitingly to the head of Jon Watkins from a Mannion cross, but Watkins had to much time to dwell on a close range header, eventually putting the ball over the bar from six-yards-out.

After that nearly moment for the team, when we were able to bring on fresh blood the game was all Hype Train as we began dominating the game. Liam Bowbrick was only a better connection away from troubling the Southbank keeper, before the stroke of the 70th minute saw the game run away from the visitors. Liam Bowbrick and Brad Matthews combined in midfield, with Bowbrick feeding his brother, Owen, down the wing with a through ball - which all led the team to have a 3-on-2 situation, with Owen Bowbrick slicing the Southbank defence open with an inch-perfect cut-back that was converted by Phil Newport - a really good counter attacking goal that was met with universal applause from the team.

The team's relentless pressure paid off in the 89th minute when Cosmin Huhulea, who was in the wars all morning, was rewarded after some fine footwork and a shot that was saved and eventually cleared away, but only sliced and to Alvin Mugabe inside the penalty area, who teed up Huhulea to curl home a simple effort into the bottom-left corner.

In a great end to the game, following on from a corner that was cleared away, Huhulea calmly controlled the ball and played the ball to Liam bowbrick, who checked past one Southbank player and shot speculatively at goal, with the shot dropping at the last moment and through the Southbank goalkeeper - a very bizarre, but ultimately rewarding goal - as the team completed their rout over Southbank.

The result means that the team remain in 2nd place in RDSL Division 3 with 6 wins from 7 matches, behind table-toppers RE United. Next up for the team, we are one again facing Southbank FC, this time away from home in the Berks & Bucks FA Sunday Trophy on Sunday 27th November 2022!

Thoughts from Club Secretary, Robert Austin:

"Building on from a frustrating game at times last week against Burghfield, today's performance was heavily improved upon with the team clicking well throughout the morning, and on the whole was a very deserved win for the team.

The opening stages of the game were nervy and frustrating, the grass at Calcot hadn't been cut despite our endeavour with the council, which meant that a lot of our shots and efforts on goal were subject to a lottery as the ball either got stuck in the grass, or overhit as a result. When the right moments did arrive though, we were clinical and built on every goal.

With each goal, the game became more tense as the visitors aimed frustrations and were trying to get us to bite and snap back to drop our level, but fortunately we were able to ride the storm and really put the sword to them in the second-half with some really good and well-worked goals. Compared to last weekend, the ball was moved quicker, we showed masses of confidence, and were able to get a very good result on the board to keep pressure on the top of the Division 3 table.

I couldn't have been happier with the entire squad and made this clear to them at the end of the game, especially as we have been managing a competitive squad over the last few weeks - and it is very good to see that everyone is pulling their weight and pushing in the right direction.

Thank you for the game, Southbank, and see you next week in the County Cup! Hopefully the grass won't be as long as scenes in Jurassic Park, and we can have another good game."

Hype Train FC: Matchday Squad

Manager: Robert Austin

Starting 11:

GK: Jamie Halsall

DEF: Graham High (Watkins 71')

DEF: Tom Williams

DEF: Josh Watkins

DEF: Nikhil Garg

MID: Jon Watkins (O. Bowbrick 55')

MID: Callum Parr-Jones (Matthews 58')

MID: Sam Bolwell (L. Bowbrick 55')

MID: Cosmin Huhulea

MID: Phil Newport (Mugabe (55')

FOR: Leon Mannion (Newport 62', Zaky 80')


SUB: Alvin Mugabe

SUB: Walid Zaky

SUB: Brad Matthews

SUB: Owen Bowbrick

SUB: Liam Bowbrick

Goals & Assists:

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

Goal 2: Mannion (goal), Parr-Jones (assist)

Goal 3: Newport (goal), O. Bowbrick (assist)

Goal 4: Huhulea (goal), Mugabe (assist)

Goal 5: L. Bowbrick (goal), Huhulea (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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