Essex Senior League: Local rivals Ilford, Redbridge and Barkingside eye cup joy
PUBLISHED: 14:00 19 January 2017
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We look back on the last 12 months for the three rival club in our ‘Year in Sport’ pull-out this week
Ilford, Redbridge and Barkingside are desperate to win some type of silverware in 2017 after enduring a frustrating 12 months.
The Motormen and Side suffered relegation from the Ryman North in April, while the Foxes have encountered a number of problems in the Essex Senior League this season after an excellent 2015/16 campaign.
Allan Fenn’s team finished fifth to increase optimism at Cricklefield Stadium, but a bizarre fixture schedule and inconsistency hasn’t helped their recent cause, while Redbridge and Barkingside initially failed to handle the drop down to the Essex Senior League level.
A mixed first half of the campaign for the three clubs places them in mid-table with less than half of the season to go.
With promotion now almost out of the question, the aim of Ilford, Redbridge and Barkingside is to win a trophy in 2017.
Gursel Gulfer’s Side remain in the London Senior Cup, although they face a tricky tie with Ryman Premier outfit Dulwich Hamlet.
Barkingside take on Eton Manor in the second round of the Gordon Brasted Memorial Trophy in February, which is realistically their best chance of claiming silverware this season.
Redbridge and Ilford are still in the Gordon Brasted and League Cup, so both will be determined to get their hands on some silverware this campaign.
If the Foxes beat Enfield at home and the Motormen see off Southend Manor away, they will meet in the Trophy quarter-finals.
Both are in the second round of the League Cup too, with Ilford away to Eton Manor and Redbridge at home to Sawbridgeworth Town.
Dave Ross and Ricky Eaton’s team also have a lucrative London Senior Cup tie at Oakside against League One side AFC Wimbledon.
While Ilford, Redbridge and Barkingside will not be involved in the title race this season, a strong finish could see them build much-needed momentum for the following campaign.
Bowers & Pitsea won the League Challenge Cup in May 2015 and earned promotion to the Ryman North the next year.
Meanwhile Clapton’s triumph in the Gordon Brasted Memorial Trophy last season has helped push them on this campaign.
Ilford, Redbridge and Barkingside will all be targeting silverware over the next couple of months to ensure 2017 is more memorable than the past year.
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