Essex Senior League: Classy FC Romania down Redbridge at freezing Oakside
PUBLISHED: 08:00 22 January 2017
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Essex Senior League: Redbridge 1 FC Romania 4
A clinical showing from FC Romania consigned Redbridge to a 4-1 defeat in the Essex Senior League on a bitterly cold afternoon at Oakside.
Dave Ross and Ricky Eaton done a tremendous job of getting the game on with local clubs Leyton Orient and Dagenham & Redbridge having their fixtures postponed.
But by the end of the first half, the management duo might have been wishing the frost had forced the Motormen’s match to be off.
It took FC Romania just six minutes to open the scoring when Marius Teleoaca fired home via a deflection after poor defending from the hosts.
Redbridge responded immediately with new signing Brian Moses trying his luck, but his effort was weak.
After conceding so early, Ross and Eaton saw their side enjoy the rest of the opening exchanges and they should have levelled in the 12th minute.
Captain Adam Hunt picked out Terrell Miller, but he couldn’t beat Adrian Darabant in the Romania goal from 12-yards.
Motormen kept hold of possession, however, and fashioned another chance, though Moses had a shot blocked.
FC Romania then doubled their advantage, slightly against the run of play, when Ilie Vasile played a beautiful curling pass to Sergui Pitaru and he slotted home in the 18th minute.
It was harsh on the hosts, although the clinical finishing of the visitors meant they deserved their lead.
Once again Redbridge failed to let the setback deter them and came so close to reducing the arrears six minutes after the second.
The in-form Jacob Dingli was played through and rounded Darabant before firing towards goal, but Ion Costache got back well on the line and cleared.
Moses should have done better four minutes later following a dangerous Hunt corner, yet nodded wide from close range.
And with 32 minutes played Motormen created another fine opportunity when Moses knocked down for Dingli.
Redbridge’s striker was crowded out, though found Miller, but he leaned back and fired over.
Joe Gent embarked on a fine run just before the break and the ball fell for Dingli, although his shot was blocked.
And FC Romania hit the hosts with a sucker punch on the stroke of half time when Vasile ran past three Motormen defenders and fired into the corner.
Ross and Eaton’s team responded with Dingli having a header tipped over, although it remained 3-0 at half time.
The hosts begun the second period strongly and Gent failed to hit the target from a tight angle 60 seconds after the restart.
But FC Romania demonstrated their class in the 51st minute when Florin Pop made the most of a Redbridge mistake to fire past Jake Mernagh.
It knocked the stuffing out of the hosts briefly and away substitute Andrei Pavel nearly made it 5-0 soon after.
Motormen regained their composure again and Jamie Alexandrou made a strong tackle before having a shot blocked.
Dingli picked up the loose ball and curled over before James Dobson replaced Sean Kettle in the 63rd minute.
Redbridge, despite being four down, continued to press and came close again with 22 minutes remaining at Oakside.
Dingli and Miller combined and the latter found Moses, although his firm drive flew just past the post.
Young Jack Roult made way to applause in the 70th minute with Jordan Cornelius coming on at right-back for Redbridge.
Less than 60 seconds later and Motormen went close twice in quick succession at a freezing cold Oakside.
First Charlie Parish had a close range volley saved by Darabant and the follow up shot by Moses was cleared off the line.
The hosts maintained their momentum and Dobson’s cross so nearly found the net, but FC Romania’s goalkeeper tipped wide.
Redbridge captain Hunt lashed just past the post in the 76th minute with the sun firmly setting in east London.
Away defender Dinu Barcari was then penalised by referee Ari Mendonca six minutes later for deliberate handball just outside the area.
The man in the middle, who had an extremely good game, had handed Motormen a great chance to pull one back.
And they did just that as Hunt’s free kick was deflected up in the air and Parish battled with Darabant for the loose ball.
Redbridge’s defender deflected the ball goalwards and Barcari could only bundle the ball into his own net with eight minutes left.
There was still time for FC Romania to nearly add a fifth when Pop tested Mernagh from inside the area.
Motormen’s goalkeeper made a fine save and managed to get up quick enough to flick the rebound over the crossbar.
It was the last meaningful action of the match with referee Mendonca bringing the encounter to a close minutes later.
Redbridge had been punished for their mistakes at the back and a lack of clinicalness in front of goal.
The Motormen, who were without several players and had to name boss Eaton on the bench, sit 11th in the table after the defeat.
And they now have another seven days before they return to action when Enfield make the trip to Oakside.
Redbridge: Mernagh; Roult (Cornelius 70), Parish, Alexandrou, Carter; Gent, Kettle (Dobson 63), Hunt, Miller; Moses, Dingli.
Unused substitutes: Eaton, Odutola.
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