Monday 28th August 2023
Pitching In Southern League Premier Division South
Chesham United 3 Beaconsfield Town 0
The Meadow - Att 670
Ram of the Match - Sam Granville
Chesham United continued their unbeaten start to the season as Beaconsfield remained winless after their bank holiday encounter at the Meadow on Monday Afternoon.
Jon Underwood rang the changes in search of a change in fortunes. Resting Sam Togwell and Josh Payne whilst reverting to a back four. Louis Pegg filled in at right-back while Ibby Sankoh completed his two-match ban and Ben van Aurich replaced the injured Elijah Anthony, sidelined with an impact injury that he picked up in Saturday's home defeat against Tiverton.
Jefferson Louis continued up front for The Rams but it was his opposite number Ricardo German who dominated proceedings. Bagging a hat trick before heading off to take in the finale of Notting Hill Carnival .
He was almost unplayable for The Ram's defence in the first half, the focal point of most of the good things that the home side did. Strong in possession, tenacious in the press, and an absolute handful for Luke Neville in particular. After 20 minutes German lured Neville tight, spun away from his attentions, and burst into the area. The Rams' skipper's recovering sliding challenge appeared to be from the side and very adjacent to the ball but German went down, as the byeline beckoned and gave Mr David Nicholson a decision to make. He pointed to the spot.
After a lengthy run-up, that owed more to interpretative dance, Including a one-legged pirouette, presumably an homage to the Karate kid? half way through, German slotted the ball home.
His second just before halftime owed much to the first as it affected Neville's decision-making. German made an almost identical run but this time the defender stayed on his feet and the striker sent a low shot from a narrow-angle across Beasant and into the far corner.
Two nil was slightly flattering for the hosts on the balance of first-half play. That said though, The Rams created little in an attacking sense in the opening period beyond some dangerous crosses which were well dealt with by Zaki Oualah in the home goal. Sam Granville and Jacob Gardiner-Smith were industrious and busy in midfield ably assisted by James Dobson, Dan Bradshaw, and Asher Yearwood but the Chesham defense was well marshaled and Jefferson Louis was starved of decent service throughout and cut an increasingly frustrated figure as the game wore on.
The visitor's play was littered with passing errors, and ponderous play on the ball and lacked much of its usual snap and pace. Whilst they enjoyed good periods of controlled possession they never really opened up the home back line who never really needed to shift through the gears to deal with what the Rams threw at them.
Half Time 2-0
Jon Underwood introduced Jonathan Hippolyte at the break in an attempt to bolster The Ram's attacking options and the move almost paid off immediately as he latched on to a flick-on from Asher Yearwood, lifted the ball over the advancing Oualah but got too much air under the ball allowing Lewis Rolfe to cover back and hook the ball away from under the bar. The resulting corner narrowly invaded Lewis Pegg at the near post. Hippolyte's presence gave more for the home defence to think about and The Rams enjoyed their best period in the opening stages of the second half but on 58 Mins German put the game beyond reach after a low cross struck a sliding defender on the arm and Mr Nicholson gave a second penalty. German offered a more traditional approach to the second with an equally emphatic result.
His afternoon's work complete German was withdrawn after an hour and change, to be replaced by ex-Ram Lucas Sinclair who lasted less than 10 minutes before a swinging arm into the face of Luke Neville under a high ball was deemed worthy of a straight Red by Mr Nicholson.Even against 10 men - Beaconsfield struggled to make regular in roads and when they did carve out good opportunities Oualah was on hand to keep them out saving well from Lenny Farhall and quite brilliantly from Dan Bradshaw whose snap shot from 18 yards had the Chesham keeper flying to his right to tip the effort away.
For all that, the hosts looked well within themselves and it was hard to escape the feeling that if they had wanted more goals, or needed to up their game they possessed the tools and the ability to do just that.
The Rams now have a week away from the pressures of league football as they take on Southall in the first qualifying round of this season's Emirates FA Cup.
The tie takes place at Burnham on Saturday 2nd September kick-off 3pm.
Images © Neale Blackburn Photography 2023