St Ives Town v Needham Market


Match Report

St Ives Town v Needham Market

Pitching-In Southern League Premier Central  19-11-2022

An excellently taken first half Nabil Shariff goal and a solid second half rear guard action took Ives to within seconds of breaking the fifteen-year hoodoo that the Marketmen have held over them. Unfortunately, it was all undone in a momentary lapse of concentration in the final minute of the ninety when substitute Kaan Bennett was allowed to get through the centre of Ives back line to grab an equaliser and stretch that record into another season.

The game could have started so well for the hosts and they should have gone in front inside the first minute as a flowing move down the left was finished with Jonny Edwards putting through a slide rule pass into the perfectly timed run of Tyrone Baker. The Ives winger was completely clear with only visiting keeper Marcus Garnham to beat. Baker took the shot on early from just inside the box but he hit the ball at a nice saving height allowing the big keeper to go down to his right to make the save.

Ives kept up that early pressure and Edwards managed to get an eighth minute free kick through the visitors four-man wall, but the deflection on its way through took most of the sting out of it allowed a defender to hack it clear. The first fifteen minutes were quite open, and the visitors also carved out a couple of half chances. In 14th minute Ross Crane got past Baker down the left and delivered a low cross to the near post where Luke Ingram made a hash of a decent chance completely missing his kick. Home keeper James Goff was called into his first meaningful action of the afternoon two minutes later as he got down smartly to his left to keep out a near post effort from Taylor Clark. The chance had been created by a low cross from the right by Jacob Lay.

Johnny Herd’s long throw has proved a potent weapon for Ives this season and it delivered again to put Ives in front in 18th minute. The arcing missile was flicked on at the near post by Charlie Johnson and the ball dropped at the feet of Shariff eight yards out in the centre of goal. An instant spin and shot found the bottom corner beyond the despairing dive of Garnham.

Ives tried for a repeat performance three minutes later. This Herd projectile arrived at the penalty spot where Jordan Williams got a flick. Callum Milne knocked it back across goal where Johnson rose highest but failed to keep his header down under pressure from a group of Marketmen defenders and keeper Garnham.

Both sides were moving the ball around well on the excellent surface and the next chance fell to the visitors in 25th minute as Clark again got on the end of a flowing move but this time, he failed to hit the target with a crisp drive from just outside the box. Ives put together a flowing move of their own three minutes later as skipper Dylan Williams brilliantly picked out the run of Baker who got away down the right and delivered a driven cross that forced Garnham into a flying save spectacularly palming the ball away from Edwards ghosting in at the back post.

As the first half wore on the fast early pace began to drop off a little and the chances dried up at both ends in the closing fifteen minutes with both defences on top and neither keeper called into meaningful action Ives were happy to take their slender lead into the break.

The Marketmen had been forced into an early change in 31st minute when Clark limped out of the action to be replaced by Kaan Bennett and it was the substitute who came within millimetres of levelling things up only 45 seconds after the re-start. Played through by Crane, Bennett just beat Goff to the ball flicking it past the exposed keeper but fortunately for Ives he could not catch the rolling ball which clipped the outside of the post and went wide.

Having already used one of his replacements in the first period the visitor’s manager, ex Manchester City star, Kevin Horlock went for broke making his final two changes as early as 63rd minute. Jamie McGrath replacing Lay and Tom Fitzgerald coming on for Christian Frimpong. The changes almost instantly brought reward as Goff spilled a Kyle Hammond cross from the right under heavy pressure, fortunately his defenders came to his aid and scrambled the ball clear. The visitors continued to press and two minutes later Ingram curled a 25 yarder just wide of Goff’s right-hand post.  

Ives manager Ricky Marheineke made his first change in 66th minute with Enoch Andoh replacing the tiring Baker. Andoh had an almost instant impact weaving into the box on the right before setting up Kieran Higgs who played in Edwards whose fierce shot from a narrow angle deflected wide off a defender.

After that brief sortie Ives were soon forced back onto the back foot again as the visitor’s pressure built. A 72nd minute glancing header from McGrath flashed wide after the substitute had got on the end of a cross from the right by fellow replacement Fitzgerald. Five minutes later it was the turn of Bennett to fail to hit the target from a good position after Harry Knights had picked out his run from the left brilliantly with a cross field ball from inside his own half. An even better opportunity for the visitors to test Goff came only seconds later as Dylan Williams upended Bennett just outside the box. Crane’s free kick beat Ives five-man wall but curled just wide with a relieved keeper looking on.

The pressure on Ives back line was mounting and even Edwards was back helping out his defence as he picked up a yellow card for pulling back Hammond as the overlapping full back tried to break away down the left in 82nd minute. Knights had appeals for a penalty waved away as he went down under challenged at the back post as he tried to get on the end of Crane’s free kick.

Just as it was beginning to look like Ives hard work was going to pay off with maximum reward they switched off for just a few seconds allowing Bennett and Ingram to exchange passes through the centre of their defence. The former running clear onto the latter’s through ball and clipping the ball past the exposed Goff from just inside the box to level things up.

There was still time for both sides to go close to finding a winner in the added five minutes. For Ives Herd delivered a free kick from the left that Jordan Williams won in the air on the edge of the box. His header down found Shariff but he was crowded out and the ball fell to Andoh on the edge of the box. His shot took a deflection which took all of the sting out of it making an easy save for Garnham. The stoppers big boot up the pitch then carved out a half chance at the other end as Ives substitute Lewis Lembikisa allowed it to bounce and Ingram nipped past him. The visitor’s number nine went down under challenge from the recovering defender, much to the relief of Ives supporters referee Lee Hartley waved away the striker’s pleas for a penalty and ended up booking keeper Garnham who ran half the length of the pitch to join in the protests.

A point that Ives would have probably taken pre-game felt like a defeat after such a late equaliser and it was a demoralised group of players that trudged off at the end but they must take the positives from this performance and use them as motivation to find a return to winning ways in their next game at quattro tech Westwood Road next Saturday when they face lowly Hednesford Town. 

Final Score:  St Ives Town  1  Needham Market  1


ST IVES: Shariff 18,

NEEDHAM: Bennett 90,

Team Line Ups:

ST IVES: Goff, Milne, Herd, Higgs (Lembikisa 89), J. Williams, Johnson, Baker (Andoh 66), Hottor, Edwards (Kaziboni 84), D. Williams (capt), Shariff, Unused subs: none

NEEDHAM: Garnham, Hammond, Dye, Frimpong (Fitzgerald 63), K. Morphew (capt), D. Morphew, Lay (McGrath 63), Knights, Ingram, Clark (Bennett 31), Crane, Unused subs: none

Cards: Yellow:  ST IVES:  Hottor (43), D. Williams (78), Edwards (82)      NEEDHAM: Crane (50), K. Morphew (90+3), Garnham (90+5)


Attendance:  176

Report by Nigel Howlett. Match highlights by Ollie Jones. Interview by Andrew Dunn. Photos by Louise Thompson.

St Ives Town

1James Goff Goalkeeper
2Callum Milne Defender
3Johnny Herd Defender
4Kieran Higgs 14 Winger
5Jordan Williams Defender
6Charlie Johnson Defender
7Tyrone Baker 17 Winger
8Edmund Hottor Midfielder 43'
9Jonathan Edwards 12 Striker 82'
10Dylan Williams Midfielder 78'
11Nabil Shariff Striker 18'
12Greg Kaziboni 9 Midfielder
14Lewis Lembikisa 4 Striker
17Enoch Andoh 7 Winger
Yellow Cards
Red Cards


Date Time League Season Full Time
November 19, 2022 15:00 Southern League Premier Division Central 2022-23 90'


Club1st HalfFinal Score
St Ives Town11
Needham Market01