Boreham Wood v Eastleigh
Saturday 5th November 2022, 3.00pm
LV BET Stadium Meadow Park, Emirates FA Cup First Round
The Wood return to FA Cup action this weekend, looking to bounce back from defeat last time out at Chesterfield as they host Eastleigh in a repeat of last season’s First Round.
IN FOCUS: EASTLEIGH
The Spitfires are approaching a decade in the National League following their promotion in 2014, with a 19thplace finish last time out sealing a ninth consecutive year in the fifth tier. They have begun the current campaign promisingly though, racking up 25 points from their opening 17 games to see them sit 9th with seven wins, four draws and six defeats, after strengthening in the summer with the arrivals of Ousseynou Cissé, Christian Maghoma, Tristan Abrahams, Charlie Carter and Aaron Martin from Football League clubs, adding experience alongside the new crop of young players with Corey Panter, Brennan Camp, George Langston and JJ McKiernan joining from Luton Town, AFC Bournemouth and Watford respectively. This softened the blow of the departures of Andrew Boyce, Harry Pritchard, Cav Miley and Sam Smart to fellow National League clubs along with veterans Danny Hollands and Tyrone Barnett also moving on. Eastleigh have lost just three of their last 11 games, a run that includes victory over league rivals Dorking Wanderers in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round, and will be looking to enact revenge on the Wood for knocking them out of the competition at the same stage last season.
LAST TIME OUT
Eastleigh 2-0 Scunthorpe United
Tuesday 1st November 2022
Vanarama National League
Vincent Harper came off the bench to net a winning brace at home to Scunthorpe United, as Eastleigh continued their unbeaten run at the Silverlake Stadium.
In a match that saw the hosts have the better of things early on, they went close with chances for JJ McKiernan and Tristan Abrahams as the Spitfires looked to make the breakthrough, before Joe Nuttall tried his luck from distance as the visitor’s first real attempt went off target. The Spitfires continued to dominate proceedings, but were unable to take the lead as opportunities for Jake Hesketh, Abrahams and Brennan Camp all went amiss despite causing plenty of problems for their opponents, going into the break goalless.
The game burst straight into life after the restart, with Scunthorpe finally going close to taking the lead when Andrew Boyce headed over Jacob Butterfield’s corner, shortly before Nuttall forced Joe McDonnell into his first save of the night. Boyce would then have another headed attempt come his way with his powerful effort going inches over the crossbar, as the Iron had seemingly gained some control. Despite this, the Spitfires remained positive with Michael Kelly having a cross deflected goal-bound with Marcus Dewhurst scrambling to keep it out, before George Langston combined with Hesketh to see the latter head over the crossbar. They would finally break the deadlock on the 68th minute when Harper thundered a powerful strike into the top corner with just his second touch, after Charlier Carter threaded a ball through to the wing-back to meet almost immediately after coming on. Scunthorpe pushed for a late equaliser and saw a penalty appeal waved away after Rob Apter went down in the box, with the visitors forcing a succession of corners that were all repelled by the home team. With the game stretched, this left space for McKiernan to race towards goal before putting it on a plate for Harper to hammer home and secure the victory.
Scunthorpe United (H)
Woking (A) L1-0
Torquay United (H) W1-0
Solihull Moors (A) L3-0
Dorking Wanderers (A) W1-3
Chesterfield (H) W2-1
Eastleigh come into Saturday’s fixture in good form having lost just three of their last 11 in all competitions. Brennan Camp’s late strike secured victory over Chesterfield to bring a run of three draws in their previous five to an end, following it up with a comfortable win in the FA Cup Fourth Qualifying Round over league rivals Dorking Wanderers. Solihull Moors brought the Spitfires back down to earth with a 3-0 humbling at Damson Park, beginning a spell of inconsistency with victory over Torquay United preceding a second defeat in three games at Woking. However, they made amends by adding another win as a super sub appearance from Vincent Harper saw the former Bristol City man net a brace after coming on to secure victory over Scunthorpe United last time out.
IN THE DUGOUT: LEE BRADBURY
Lee Bradbury enjoyed a enjoyed a 17-year playing career after spending some time in the Army, featuring over 100 times for Portsmouth and AFC Bournemouth, as well as spending a season with Manchester City in 1997/98 when he was purchased for £3 million. He is well-known locally, having spent time with Pompey and the Cherries as a player and in various coaching roles, guiding the latter to the League One play-offs before spending seven years as manager of Havant & Waterlooville where he oversaw the Hawks’ first ever promotion to the National League. After brief spells at Eastbourne Borough and Crawley Town, the latter being in an assistant head coach role, Bradbury returned to the National League when he took over at Eastleigh in February 2022.
ONE TO WATCH: CHARLIE CARTER
A forward-minded midfielder, Charlie Carter began his career in the Fulham academy before moving to Woking, spending five years in Surrey where he featured 77 times. A season at Chesterfield followed, with his form earning a move to the Football League when he joined League Two outfit Stevenage. The 24-year old spent three seasons at the Lamex Stadium before making the move to Eastleigh in the summer, arriving with nearly 200 appearances and over 26 goals to his name.
LAST TIME WE MET
Boreham Wood 1-0 Eastleigh
Saturday 26th February 2022
Vanarama National League
The Wood grinded out a narrow victory over Eastleigh as an early strike from Tyrone Marsh saw them continue their unbeaten home run.
It was a dream start for the hosts who took the lead after just five minutes, as a corner was swung in by Frankie Raymond towards Will Evans, who’s header fortuitously flicked into the path of Marsh who scrambled the ball over the line. They struggled to build momentum though with much of the first half remaining flat, as Eastleigh looked to find a way back into it without producing a meaningful chance. They did have the ball in the back of the net shortly before the half-hour mark though, but the assistant’s flag came to the Wood’s aid after Tyrone Barnett’s cracking volley was ruled out for offside on Harry Pritchard. The Wood then produced a golden opportunity when Marsh broke quickly against a backpedalling Spitfires defence, but Josh Rees was unable to remain composed in front of goal as he dragged his subsequent effort wide.
The Wood were certainly comfortable for the remainder of the half and continued it into the second half, although chances remained at a premium for both sides. The visitors soon began a spell of half chances with Cav Miley and Michael Kelly both firing volleys off target. The hosts should have extended their lead when a lovely reverse pass from Raymond found Marsh in front of goal, who played the ball into the path of Scott Boden after Eastleigh were able to return to their defensive shape but the chance broke down after the striker took too long on the ball. Further chances fell to Jacob Mendy Mendy and Dennon Lewis as the Wood looked to add a second, with victory being secured despite a late chance for the visitors, as Danny Whitehall swung a right leg at the ball after a corner led to pinball in the box, but the ball nestled in the wrong side of the net before the referee brought a close to proceedings.