Ryman League Division One South
Saturday 2nd January 2016
Match report and photos: Stuart Tree (photos here)
Video Highlights courtesy of Fox in the Box (click here)
Corinthian-Casuals came away from Colston Avenue with an unlikely point after substitute Shaun Okojie struck in the 83rd minute to share the spoils with Carshalton Athletic.
In a game bereft of chances for the visitors, a mixture of superb goalkeeping and the home side’s wasteful chances enabled James Bracken’s side to get back into the contest and grab a vital point.
Bracken reshuffled his defence, which included an appearance for Rhys Coleman – his first since the opening day of the season. Cherno Mendy was unavailable and so Matt Reece was given a central striker’s role with Emmanuel Akokhia and Juevan Spencer providing the width. Ex-Corinth management duo, Matt Howard and Luke Garrard’s Carshalton side included familiar face, Lee Hall.
On an artificial surface which Carshalton have come accustomed to, the Robins started the livelier and perhaps should have taken the lead after Moses Ashikodi headed over from a well-judged cross.
The continuing rain helped to create a slick surface but one that Casuals just couldn’t find their feet on. As the half continued, it looked to be a subdued performance from the Amateurs. Akokhia had rare glimpses of the ball and could only muster half chances from his wide positions.
Carshalton’s Bobby Price came closest to opening the scoring after a wicked cross wasn’t dealt with in the most comfortable manner. Danny Bracken in goal had to be alert from shots via Tommy Bradford and Adam Thompson. Ashikodi also saw his close range volley sail over the crossbar, when perhaps he should’ve scored.
In what would’ve been a harsh twist, Juevan Spencer was inches from meeting an Akokhia cross at the far post, where surely any touch would’ve resulted in a goal. However, it wouldn’t be far from the truth that Casuals went into half time lucky that they weren’t out of the game.
After the break, Tommy Bradford nearly broke the deadlock, firing viciously towards the top corner, however, Bracken at absolute full stretch, spectacularly palmed away the effort.
Despite being in fine form, there was nothing the keeper could do about Carshalton’s opener; with the defence going missing, Tommy Bradford was put through on goal and slotted past Bracken’s left side to give the home side the lead.
Far from allowing the game to be decided by what had gone before, James Bracken made attacking changes, bringing on Steph Joseph and Shaun Okojie. Buoyed on by the non-stop chanting from the Casuals’ faithful behind the goal, Corinth finally grew into the game and started to impose themselves a little more.
On 83 minutes, in what could be described as the first real attempt on goal in the half, Okojie levelled the scores. From a free kick delivered from wide, Okojie met the cross at the far post and guided it past Colquhoun in goal.
It was now Corinth who looked the more dangerous, with Kevant Serbony making imposing runs from the midfield. However, progress was a little stifled after Joseph was dismissed for a second yellow card following a two-footed challenge.
Thus, the scores remained level and the home side could feel aggrieved that they didn’t get more out of the game. James Bracken will surely take positives once again in the fact that his side doesn’t know when to quit and showed resolve which has earned them a fair few points in this league campaign.