Fisher FC 2-2 K Sports
For the crunch top of the table clash, gaffer Dean Harrison made three changes to the starting line-up that had beaten Crockenhill 5-1 the previous weekend. Dwayne Agyemang came back in at centre back, Luke Haidarovic having to drop out because of work commitments, Richie Hamill resumed his usual midfield role at the expense of Rob Brown who dropped to the bench, and Sam Pekun started in the number 9 jersey, Lee Friend missing out due to injury.
K Sports looked to get on the front foot from kick off, and in the very first minute the ball bounced around in the Fisher box as the home defence failed to clear properly. The K Sports number 10 hooked a volley from inside the box, but it lacked power and direction and went harmlessly wide of Nic Taylor’s left hand post.
Fisher came straight back at K Sports, Harry Draper feeding Jamie Brown with a lovely pass, then Brown’s square ball looking for Sam Pekun was deflected into the air. The keeper came to the edge of the box but was deceived by the bouncing ball and couldn’t gather cleanly. The K Sports defence managed to scramble clear, but Jamie Brown picked up again and drove down the right wing before winning a corner. Richie Hamill took it short to Sam Pekun, exchanged the one two then curled a cross to the back post where it was met by Nathan Hunter. His header back across the goal-line couldn’t find a Fisher player and K Sports got the ball clear. A big shout for handball went up from the Fisher players but the ref wasn’t interested.
After 10 minutes, Sam Pekun won a second corner down the Fisher right. Hamill’s ball in was met by Dwyane Agyemang but his header was headed off the line by a K Sports defender. The ball went behind for another corner, but the keeper claimed the ball this time. Two minutes later, Jamie Brown danced up the right wing and fed Pekun, who found Ramsamy with a delicate flick. Ramsamy smashed home but the flag went up and it didn’t stand.
A quarter of an hour in, Nathan Hunter was penalized for a challenge out on the left touchline. K Sports crossed the free kick into the box. It was missed by everyone and Nic Taylor had to push the ball away, before Harvey Brinkley completed the clearance. Three minutes later, it was Fisher’s turn to cross into the box from their left touchline. Hamill’s cross was headed partially clear, but Dwayne Agyemang headed back towards goal and Sam Pekun leapt to flick the ball on. The K Sports keeper did brilliantly to tip the ball over the bar, but again the flag was up for offside.
The game then entered a scrappy phase: both teams were competing hard and cancelling each other out, and neither team was able to break the other down. Jamie Brown had a half chance on 33 minutes, curling over from outside the box after a good run by Harry Draper, but it was K Sports who made the breakthrough against the run of play on 37 minutes. A cross into the box was headed out by Nathan Hunter, and it was met on the edge of the box by Butler who hit a dipping volley into the left hand corner of the net. It was a great strike, but Fisher were entitled to feel hard done by at being a goal down. 0-1, Butler, 37 mins
Jamie Brown did his best to get Fisher back level two minutes later, skipping round three tackles before the last man managed to clear for a corner. Ramsamy’s header from the corner looped over the bar. K Sports then had their best chance of the half on 42 minutes, when a through ball split the Fisher centre backs but the striker was falling off balance as he shot and the ball went well wide.
Just as it looked as if Fisher would be trailing at the break, up popped that man Ramsamy who just can’t stop scoring in a Fisher jersey. A lovely diagonal ball by right back Harvey Brinkley found the mercurial winger, who cut back inside his man then wrongfooted the keeper and slide the ball into the net. Going into the match, Ramsamy had 13 goals for Fisher in just 11 starts, and indeed has only failed to score in 1 of those 11 starts! 1-1, Mathieu Ramsamy, 45mins
Half-time: Fisher FC 1-1 K Sports. Going in level at the break was the least Fisher deserved, having had the better of the chances. They hadn’t had it all their own way, however, with K Sports looking like a well-organised and physical outfit. Half-time stats thanks to Simon (@throssfilms):
Fisher resumed the match shooting towards their vocal backing in the Dockers End (which included Ash Wright and Jack Bullock, there to cheer on their team-mates). On 50 minutes, Harry Draper was first to enter the ref’s book in a bizarre incident which saw Draper beat his opposite number to the back in the middle of the pitch, knock the ball to a team-mate then be tripped by the K Sports players. Somehow the ref saw fit to award K Sports a free-kick and book Draper! Not the first odd decision by the ref, and sadly not the last.
On 53 minutes, Ramsamy was fouled 25 yards from goal. Richie Hamill took the free kick and beat the K Sports keeper, but sadly just beat the right hand post. A minute later, Toyo Adeshina won a free kick on the left wing. Hamill crossed, Jamie Brown headed back across goal but Dwyane Agyemang couldn’t quite get a touch on it to divert home and the ball ran just past the left hand post.
Right on the hour mark, Fisher really should have taken the lead. Harry Draper did brilliantly to win a tackle in the middle of the pitch, then play Ramsamy through on goal. It was the sort of chance Ramsamy has finished so many times this season, but he delayed getting his shot off a fraction too long, and the keeper was able to hold the shot at the winger’s feet.
K Sports then had a couple of good chances to take the lead themselves. A shot from the edge of the box was deflected over for their first corner of the match. From the corner, a shot was cleared off the line at the right hand post, then a follow-up shot was blazed over.
On 66 minutes, Fisher made their first change, Rob Brown coming on for Richie Hamill. Two minutes later, Sam Pekun won a corner down the Fisher left. K Sports cleared the ball behind for a second corner, and this time the keeper and a defender combined to keep out Dwayne Agyemang’s close range header. See it again here: https://twitter.com/FisherFC/status/959825489211875333
Fisher continued to press hard for a second goal. Ramsamy nutmegged his man beautifully just outside the box, and was brought down. The resulting free kick was nodded behind for a corner, as Rob Brown tried to get on the end of it: https://twitter.com/FisherFC/status/959826815559880706
The corner was punched behind by the K Sports keeper for yet another corner. This time K Sports managed to clear, and immediately went on the counter attack, catching Fisher on the break. It took a brilliant diving stop by Nic Taylor at the forward’s feet to prevent Fisher falling behind. Fisher then broke straight back up the pitch, and Jamie Brown twisted and turned before shooting low inside the box. The K Sports keeper made a great save with his feet, and the ball was thumped clear.
K Sports hadn’t given up hope of getting the three points themselves, and a free kick on the right wing was headed back across the face of goal but Toyo Adeshina was able to clear. Right on 80 minutes, Fisher had perhaps the best chance of the whole game: Ramsamy had a strong run down the left wing, then crossed along the ground to the penalty spot. Harry Draper cleverly dummied it, leaving Jamie Brown unmarked with time and space to shoot. Just as the Dockers End waited for the net to bulge, the K Sports keeper pulled off another stunning stop with his feet.
By now, Fisher were laying siege to the K Sports goal. Sam Pekun went off for Alfie Collins, and then a Rob Brown cross was hoofed just over his own crossbar by a K Sports defender. Rob Brown won the header from the corner too, but the keeper jumped to catch the ball just under the bar. Another Fisher free kick on the left wing was curled in by Rob Brown, headed up in the air and Jamie Brown gathered in the six yard box but just couldn’t get it under control and ran it out of play.
Just when it seemed as if Fisher would have to settle for a share of the spoils, right on the 90th minute Toyo Adeshina popped up on the right wing, advanced into the box then sent a lovely low cross along the six yard line. Alfie Collins slid in, couldn’t quite make contact, but right at the back post Mathieu Ramsamy was waiting to tap home. Cue absolute bedlam in the Dockers End, as the entire Fisher team – Nic Taylor included! – joined a massive huddle with the fans behind the goal! See it again here – John captured it as he always seems to do! https://twitter.com/John84Green/status/959853809550921729 2-1, Mathieu Ramsamy, 90 mins
Fisher were buoyed by the goal and looked to see out the 4 minutes that were added on. They were doing so in relative comfort, with K Sports struggling to get the ball off the home side. The game entered a fifth minute of extra time, then a sixth, and then disaster struck. A cross into the box from the left hand side was going away from goal when Toyo Adeshina inexplicably stuck his hand up. A clear handball and a clear penalty, but the game should have long since been brought to an end. From ecstasy to agony for Fisher – the high and lows of football encapsulated in a few short minutes. K Sports converted the penalty, and the ref blew for full time as soon as Fisher took the kick off. 2-2, 97 mins
Full-time: Fisher FC 2-2 K Sports. A pulsating match ended in the cruelest of ways for Fisher, who had a really good go at K Sports in the second half and were desperately unlucky not to get the win. Where the ref found 7 additional minutes from is anyone’s guess, but Fisher can keep their heads held high, having dominated the team at the top of the league.
Man of the match: Harry Draper showed his usual drive and determination in the middle of the pitch, Mathieu Ramsamy extended his astonishing goalscoring record with another two, but for the fourth game running the man of the match is Jamie Brown. The K Sports left back had a torrid time as Brown skipped past him time after time, and so many of the Fisher attacks were channeled through the talented right winger.
Fisher 2-2 K Sports
Saturday 3 February 2018
SCEFL First Division
Mathieu Ramsamy 45, 90
Richard Butler 37
James Alderman 97 (p)