West Bridgford FC on brink of promotion as champions after away victory

In this important fixture against Holwell Sports FC, West Bridgford were seeking four points from their remaining two away fixtures to secure the East Midland Counties League title.

By John Burns

They were forced to make a late change to their starting line up when centre half Pat Newsome failed a late fitness test – Dave Erentz moved into centre half and Kevin Spriggs slotted in at right back.

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Before kick off Bridgford reflected on Tuesdays defeat against local rivals Radcliffe Olympic. In that game all I could hear throughout the match was Sky Sports Chris Kamara’s voice in my head shouting ‘unbelievable Jeff, unbelievable’…. Bridgford have missed yet another chance – at some point I think a messenger was sent to the kitchen to see if we could borrow the Sink.. we had thrown everything else at them on the evening.

In this game we again started brightly, Will Heath and Man of The Match Jamie Spiers began to take control of midfield against a good Holwell Sports side who were proving to be no easy pushovers.

Bridgford suffered an early set back when in the 28th minute midfielder Will Heath suffered a re-occurring ankle problem and was forced to leave the filed – veteran midfielder Tom Coole his replacement.

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There were chances at both ends before in the 39th minute a superb cross from Ross McCaughey saw Tim Hopkinson head home at the far post to give Bridgford the lead. 0-1 (Bridgford)

HT 0-1 (Bridgford)

Early in the second half Holwell winger David Hazeldine had two excellent efforts whistle past the post. The away side made two more substitutions with Carl Westcarr and Jurgen Charlesworth joining the fray for the below par Abou Sylla and winger Tomi Jayeiola.

With fresh legs introduced and Westcarr being a nuisance up front Bridgford saw an immediate impact as Coole and Spiers had excellent efforts saved.

In the 75th minute the league leaders double their lead settling their apparent nerves in the process – this time slick interplay between Charlesworth, Large and Spriggs found Hopkinson who was crudely hacked down in the box for a resultant penalty.

If there is one thing you could almost gamble your mortgage on it would be for leading scorer and penalty specialist Carl Westcarr to slot the ball home… that is exactly what he did and with extreme coolness – it was also his 23rd goal of the season. 0-2 (Bridgford)

A minute later Bridgford secured the contest when a lovely Ross McCaughey through ball was slotted home by Hopkinson at the second attempt after a superb save from the Holwell keeper – it was Hopkinson’s 25th goal in just 27 starts for the club. 0-3 (Bridgford)

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FT 0-3 (Bridgford)

Yet again the team spirit and togetherness on the day epitomised Bridgford’s campaign – the travelling supporters were justifiably proud of their team’s performance..

Man Of The Match: Jamie Spiers

Joint Manager Stuart Robinson spoke at full time; ‘I didn’t actually think there was much in it for the first 60 minutes as Holwell were excellent in their work rate and pressing, the first goal just before half time was crucial though and the two further bits of quality in the second half sealed it for us – after the defeat against Radcliffe Olympic on Tuesday we knew how important it was to walk away with the three points today and go into the final game at Borrowash with it in our own hands’.

The boys are away to Borrowash Victoria on Saturday 29 April 15:00 k.o for their last game of the season