Pre-Season Friendly

Potters Bar Town    1    Boreham Wood    4

by John Mead

The coming of age process of Wood’s home grown youngsters took on new levels in this useful work out against a competitive Town side.    With Ian Allinson keen to save the legs of his senior players, in light of the energy sapping Arsenal game in three days time, nine home grown youngsters played out the last thirty minutes of the game.

Their energy and enthusiasm alone was enough to add two more goals to the tally, featuring a first ever goal for Charlie Hunter and a deflected Inih Effiong shot, who added to his nineteenth minute strike.

Were it not for the heroics of Ryan Burbridge in the Town goal, Wood could have been five goals to the good by the interval.    However they fell behind when a fine counter attacking move that swept from right to left across the pitch allowed trialist Anton to pick his spot beyond Michael Jordan after fifteen minutes.

Four minutes later and Effiong pounced on a defensive error from Tom Dickie , holding off his challenger to fire a rising drive beyond Burbridge to even things up.

The rest of the first half was fairly even, with Wood failing to hold onto possession.   Simeon Akinola caused panic in the Town defence with his blistering pace and was unlucky after running onto a fine ball from Mario Noto to see his effort sail just over the crossbar.

Jordan then made a quite superb blocking save with his legs at the other end as Anton burst into the area, looking odds on to double his tally.

Wood were an altogether different prospect after the interval as their higher fitness levels showed. Both Akinola and Effiong leading the line won numerous free kicks, highlighting Town’s desperation to stem the tide of attacks.

One such free kick was curled beautifully around the wall by Daryl McMahon into the bottom left hand corner of the net after sixty-one minutes, allowing Wood to take the lead for the first time in the game.

That signalled six changes and six home grown teenagers took to the field.    Their movement and control was raw yet mesmerising and brought the best out of eighteen year old Tony Walker who played the full ninety minutes at left back and was quite outstanding.

Effiong showed real strength down the left before cutting inside to shoot for goal.    Dan Pett stuck out a leg and unfortunately for him deflected the ball beyond the reach of Callum Horton, making it 1 – 3.

Three minutes later Hunter grabbed his goal in some style, curling a fine free kick from twenty five yards out into the unreachable depths of the top right corner of the net.

After the game Ian Allinson was predictably pleased with the evening.    “Potters Bar Town had a real go and caused us problems in the first half.    We had a number of one on one chances yet their ‘keeper was in top form.    What pleased me most is how we finished the game.    The youngsters I sent out are National College Champions and you do not win a competition like that with poor players.    They have all been taught how to play the right way and their secret weapon is they do not know how to lose!”

Wood meet an Arsenal X1 in a charity showpiece match this Friday at Meadow Park, kick off 7.30pm.

Team:    Jordan (Sub – Lewis 62 mins.), Kamara, Walker, Yala, Smith, Garrard (Sub – Hunter 62 mins.), Noto (Sub – Ruddock 62 mins.), McMahon (Sub – Lawal 62 mins.), Effiong, Chaaban (Sub –  Scott-Morris 62 mins.), Akinola (Sub – Clements 62 mins.).

Goals:    Potters Bar Town:    Anton 15.            Boreham Wood:    Effiong 19, McMahon 61, Own Goal  76. Hunter 79.