NEEDHAM MARKET 6 ST IVES TOWN 1
PitchingIN Southern League Premier Division Central
Tuesday 26 September 2023
Nigel Howlett Reports from Bloomfields
The high-flying Marketmen enjoyed their evening as they put a lacklustre Ives side to the sword to retain their place in the top three and push their visitors deeper into the pack of sides at the bottom end of the table.
For the second game in a row there was good and bad news for Ives pre-match. The inclusion of long term injured Jonny Edwards and Myles Cowling in the starting line up was a pleasant surprise even though neither could be fully match fit. But to balance that the scorer of last Saturday’s goal of the season contender Ed Hottor limped out of the warm up and had to be replaced in the eleven by Fernando Bell-Toxtle.
There was a lively start for Ives with Cowling very much to the fore with his direct running style unsettling the host’s defence. Michael Richens tried his luck from distance twice in the opening few minutes with both efforts flying wide of the target.
But it did not take long for the Marketmen to settle down and it soon became clear that their pacey front men were going to be a handful for Ives back line. Tevan Allen playing wide on the right timed his 9th minute run to perfection to get on the end of Jacob Lay’s through ball and it took a brave save from Eddie Brearey to cling on to Allen’s dangerous low cross just ahead of attackers steaming in.
The Ives keeper may however feel that he was a fault as the hosts went in front three minutes later. The young keeper committed early to come for a long ball over the top on the right but he was beaten to the ball by the speedy Luke Ingram who had left Ives defenders in his wake and gleefully rolled the ball into the empty net.
Four minutes later it was two as the Ives defence seemed to go AWOL to allow Kyle Hammond and Ingram to exchange passes straight through the middle. The final ball from Ingram leaving Hammond with time to pick his spot to beat Brearey high to his right from 20 yards.
Things seemed to settle down for a while and just after the half hour Cowling came off in a planned move to be replaced by Dan Barton. Only seconds later Ives came within millimetres of halving the arrears as Paddy Casey and Greg Kaziboni combined well down the right. The former delivering a dangerous low cross to the near post that Dan Morphew slid in to just beat Edwards to it. But the toe poke from Morphew beat his own keeper and both were mightily relieved as the ball rebounded from the post straight into the grateful hands of the prostrate Marcus Garnham in the home goal.
Going close to conceding seemed to wake up the tiger in the Marketmen and within three minutes they had increased their lead. Ingram found acres of space in the centre of the park and sprayed a perfect pass into the run of overlapping full back Tom Smith. His low cross into the centre was laid back into the path of Hammond by Callum Page and the host’s midfielder fired home to claim his second of the night.
As is the minimum these days referee Jack Willmore found an added four minutes at the end of the first half and Ives enjoyed a brief purple patch in those added minutes. Edwards went close to opening his account for the season in the first of them as Richens fed him through but Garnham was equal to the striker’s low drive diving to his right to push it around the post.
Ives goal that gave a brief glimmer of hope arrived right on half time as Charlie Johnson rose at the far post to flick home Richens in-swinging free kick from the left.
But as had happened previously when Ives had gone close it seemed to lift the hosts to another period of pressure. Sure enough they came out determined to restore their three goal advantage and it only took them 65 seconds from the re-start to do so. Allen delivered a low cross from the right that took a deflection off an Ives defender and fell into the path of Ingram who did not need a second invitation to beat Brearey from ten yards.
This time the Marketmen did not ease off they continued to press and holes continued to appear in the hard worked Ives defence. Lay inadvertently hit the post in 52nd minute as Richen’s attempted clearance ricocheted off him and bounced wide off the base of Brearey’s right hand post with the keeper looking on. Two minutes later Allen went close to a deserved goal as he picked up a poor clearance from Tyrone Baker and strode forward before unleashing a rising drive from 25 yards that Brearey did well to palm away.
Baker was again at fault in 56th minute as he took down Lay inches outside the box to set up an excellent free kick opportunity for ex Ives favourite Dylan Williams. A clever free kick followed with a couple of players stepping over the ball before Williams curled it around the wall forcing Brearey into a diving save to tip the shot over the top. But the resulting corner led to the Marketmen’s fifth of the evening. The ball being fed back to Williams who fired in a low cross that was swept home at the near post by an unchallenged Kieran Morphew.
Two minutes later it looked likely to be six as Bell-Toxtle bundled over Jake Dye inside the box as the full back tried to get along the bye line. Ingram grabbed the ball intent on securing his hat trick only to be denied by an excellent save low to his left by Brearey who not only saved the shot but also hung onto the ball.
But the reprieve was very short lived as only ninety seconds later Allen grabbed the goal that his overall display on the night had deserved. Tearing straight through the heart of Ives shell shocked back line to emphatically thump the ball past the over worked Brearey from just inside the box.
Substitutions then began to happen to break up the tempo and the hosts decided to play a bit of keep ball at times. Among the substitutions was another welcome return for Ives as the hard working Brandon Njoku replaced the tiring Edwards for the final half an hour. But that was only the end of the scoring thanks to Brearey. In 70th minute a poor ball from Jordan Williams put Kaziboni in trouble. He was robbed by Hammond who fed in substitute Seth Carroll-Chambers who unleashed a stinging drive from the edge of the box that a well positioned Brearey did excellently to parry away.
Allen was still causing problems down the right and in 78th minute he cut inside Casey and strode into the box before firing into the side netting as Brearey came to close him down.
Barton earned himself a couple of man of the match nominations from the unhappy band of travelling supporters behind the far end goal as he made a few of his trademark mazy runs into the Marketmen’s back line in the closing stages. But nearest that Ives came to a second consolation goal was a fierce 25 yarder from Richens that stung the hands of Garnham as he parried it up into the air. Coolness personified in Morphew as he headed the dropping ball back to his keeper who was still on the deck but he judged it just right to put the ball straight into his hands.
Suffice to say the Marketmen retain their record as Ives bogy side with the run now stretching to thirteen games over sixteen years that the sides have met with Ives still yet to record a victory. But this was certainly the biggest thumping in the sad run of results. Manager Ricky Marheineke and his coaching team have a job to do to pick the side up from this performance and go out in search of results to lift them out of the bottom four.
Final Score: Needham Market 6 St Ives Town 1
NEEDHAM MARKET: Ingram 12 & 46, Hammond 16 & 37, K. Morphew 57, Allen 61
ST IVES: Johnson 45+4
Team Line Ups:
NEEDHAM MARKET: Garnham, Dye, T. Smith, Hammond, K. Morphew, D. Morphew, Ingram (Letts 73), Williams, Page (Fraser 60), Lay (Carroll-Chambers 60), Allen, Unused subs: R. Harris, Crossthwaite
ST IVES: Brearey, Casey, Herd (L. Harris 64), Richens (capt), Williams, Johnson, Kaziboni, Cowling (Barton 33), Edwards (Njoku 69), Bell-Toxtle, Baker Unused subs: Nassunculo, Hottor
Cards: Yellow: NEEDHAM: D. Morphew (48) ST IVES: Richens (24), Williams (41), Bell-Toxtle (55)
IVES SUPPORTERS MAN OF THE MATCH: Dan Barton