Barkingside manager Le Sage believes Cup experience was good for his side

Joni Vukaj of Clapton and Jack Gibbons of Barkingside during Clapton vs Barkingside, Len Cordell Mem

Joni Vukaj of Clapton and Jack Gibbons of Barkingside during Clapton vs Barkingside, Len Cordell Memorial Cup Football at the Jack Carter Centre on 23rd April 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

Barkingside manager Steven Le Sage believes the Len Cordell Memorial Cup was a great experience for his side as they come up against teams from higher levels.

Side crashed out of the competition thanks to a 3-1 penalty shoot-out defeat against White Ensign on Friday evening.

Ensign lead at the break thanks to a Dominic Locke goal on 36 minutes, but Side forced a shoot out when deservedly levelling with four minutes remaining after a powerful header from Reece Simpson.

It was Ensign who prevailed, though, after Jake McWee, Jason Reynolds-Blanche and Bradley Gates netted in the shoot out to run out 3-1 winners and take their place in the quarter-finals. 

“I think this competition has been a great experience for us,” said Le Sage. “We’ve learned a lot and can take away some positives from the tournament.  


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“We got involved to get the boys back playing so we really just wanted to enjoy ourselves and see how we fared against higher-level opponents. 

“I’ve learned more from this competition than I expected and I’m really excited going into the new season. 

Shaquel Foyewa of Barkingside during Clapton vs Barkingside, Len Cordell Memorial Cup Football at th

Shaquel Foyewa of Barkingside during Clapton vs Barkingside, Len Cordell Memorial Cup Football at the Jack Carter Centre on 23rd April 2021 - Credit: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo

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“In terms of what’s next, we await news from the FA regarding potential promotion to step five. I don’t know how likely this promotion is for Barkingside but wherever we start the season, I’m fully confident we’ll be ready fight to achieve our goals for the season.” 

The boss was disappointed to lose on penalties but know his side weren’t dangerous enough to progress into the next round. 

“It’s always tough to lose on penalties but ultimately that’s the price we pay for not doing enough to win the game in the 90 minutes. I was really happy with the team’s effort. 

"I think we competed well and continued to fight to win the game even after going behind. I felt we defended very well and the first phase of our build-up play was good but we weren’t dangerous enough in the final third where I thought our decision making and quality ultimately cost us the game.

“Although disappointed with the result I was proud of the effort and we continue to improve our performances against strong opposition which is pleasing. However, we know we’ve still got things to work on and we know the what these areas are.”

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