Redbridge beat Romford in relegation battle
PUBLISHED: 08:11 04 March 2015 | UPDATED: 08:11 04 March 2015
Mick Kearns/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY
Ryman North: Redbridge 2 Romford 1
In a game build as a “relegation six-pointer”, it was Redbridge who took the spoils in a vital game for both sides’ survival hopes.
Romford had taken a first-half lead, but the hosts battled back brilliantly after the break to net twice.
In the 20th minute, the Motormen’s Patrick Damali fluffed a great chance as he fired wide from a Gavin Cockman free-kick, but his blushes were spared by the offside flag.
Two minutes later, Joe Gent was played through by Kacey Adams and showed great pace to beat the Romford defence, but Aaron Omand saved expertly low down.
From the resulting corner that was initially cleared, Gent nearly curled an effort in, but was denied by another great Omand save, tipping it away.
Another corner followed and after a spot of ping-pong in the box, Damali headed over.
With 32 minutes played, a Romford free-kick into the box was not cleared by Redbridge and allowed Tyrone Scarlett to shoot.
Scarlett shot straight at Mark Parker in the Redbridge goal, who palmed it to Boro left-back Chris Barry, with his scuffed shot falling to Scarlett who then fired wide.
Less than a minute later, the Motormen went close with a free-kick of their own as Adam Hunt’s effort from the edge of area shaved the top of the crossbar.
Then, with nine minutes remaining in the half, Romford’s Jermaine Findlator was shown a yellow card after a bad foul on Shane Wallace that infuriated the home fans.
Romford took the lead in the final minute of the half, though, when a corner into the box was again poorly dealt with by Redbridge, allowing Loui Hazelwood to smash home from 18 yards.
Four minutes after the break, Aaron Scott levelled with a powerful header after a delicious free-kick from Gavin Cockman.
And less than two minutes later, another Cockman free-kick from out wide evaded everyone and crashed against the post.
In the 54th minute, Scarlett burst through the home defence, but his shot could only find ‘keeper Parker who pushed the ball away for a corner.
Seven minutes later Scarlett forced another great save from Parker with a powerful header following a cross.
Boro captain Abs Seymour delivered a fantastic ball into the box in the 70th minute, but Nick Reynolds’ header rattled the post rather than the net, with the ball ending up in Parker’s grateful arms.
Then, with 13 minutes remaining, Nathan Cooper fouled Cockman in the penalty area and Mark Nougher scored the subsequent penalty to put the hosts ahead.
The win could prove vital for Redbridge in the fight for survival as they increased their lead over Romford in the final relegation spot to six points.
Redbridge: Parker, T Thomas, Hunt (Parish 75), L Thomas, Scott, Damali, Gent (Morgan 83), Nougher, Cockman, Adams, Wallace.
Romford: Omand, Kemp, C Barry (Reynolds 39), Ishmail, Cooper, Findlator (Jones 83), Hazelwood, Seymour, Scarlett (Lord 90), Scott, Ibe.