Sunday, October 13, 2019

Merstham 1 - 4 Tanners

Leatherhead put Merstham to the sword yesterday and got rewarded with four goals and three points.  It was clear from the opening minutes that Leatherhead could go on to demolish Merstham yesterday, with our host's defence straining and having to bring in the referee and assistant to help bolster it... a goal ruled out for a dodgy offside and two good shouts for a penalty turned down.

Ibz has returned a much improved player since joining Maidstone and his run of scoring continues as he calmly found the bottom corner.  Woods too has impressed as his powerful shot found the other corner... the ball coming to him via a clear handball (make that three penalty misses, ref).

The officials realised that defending wasn't their forte, so opted to attack and awarded a weak penalty.  With a hand delicately placed on the striker's shoulder, his feet slipped out from under him and the ref could not wait to give it.  2-1.

Travis is back to his best and calmly slotted away our third and off to the tea bar to queue as only one person was working on it, despite the increased crowds on Non-league Day. 

Second half and it was more of the same.  Mensah broke free after performing an outstanding role of controlling midfield and got our fourth.  The ref had given up on Merstham by this point and awarded us an equally laughable penalty, but DSane did the sporting thing and smacked his effort against the post.

The intensity did drop off as substitutions were made but we remained very much in control until the end.  This only left the final whistle and Merstham manager, Barry Hayles (a man who put Southampton out of the League Cup once) to somehow find room to blame the officials and complain for several minutes instead of recognising his own inability to control our attacking formation.

Hornchurch it is Saturday then...

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Travelling Tanners

Leatherhead hit the road today to play in the Mick Sullivan Derby against our old friends, Merstham.  Our hosts have embraced Non-league Day, with entry just £5 if you are a season ticket holder of another club.

Meanwhile, Leatherhead have received the boost of moral that comes with three points and retaining key loan signings over the past week.

Kick off at 3pm. Directions can be found here.  See you there!

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Travelling Tanners

A fine performance on Saturday saw Leatherhead pick up all three points, keep a clean sheet and lift them out of the relegation zone (also, 10 points off of the play-offs).  The loan signings are making the difference, so let's hope they stay a bit longer...

Tonight we have the formidable midweek trip to Margate to contemplate.  I have a Tesco delivery coming so can't make it...

Kick off at 7.45.  Directions can be found here.  Good luck fellas.

Saturday, October 05, 2019

Cheshunt are coming!

A-ring-a-ding-ding!  Cheshunt come to the Grove today in the league, bringing with them a fans' favourite of Craig Edwards as manager.

Last year's South Central Division playoff winners come to the Grove looking to build on their comfortable start.  Nothing comfortable about our Tuesday night performance but let's hope for a reaction.

Kick off at 3pm.  Good luck fellas.

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

Bognor Regis Town 5 - 1 Tanners

I don't think any religious leaders lost any sleep over a second coming on the south coast last night.  Leatherhead's defensive frailties were on show and we were duly punished by our hosts.

The warning signs were there as early as the fifth minute when our defence parted allowing a free shot on goal.  Thankfully the shot was pulled inexplicably wide of the post.

On 11 minutes, Bognor had a corner which resulted in a free header and 1-0.  Eight minutes later they romp down the pitch like the Harlem Globetrotters, full of tricks, while we look like rabbits in the headlights.  2-0.

Now.  The sudden heavy downpour brought water into my house so I was just texting my wife to see if this had been resolved when we started a nice move which found a player out to our left.  I only saw a boot strike the ball and sail perfectly over the 'keeper into the net.  The quality of the finish suggested it was Ibz, but in fact it was Wood.

2-1.  We're back in this... well we were until we could only push the ball out of our box into the path of the in-form Dan Smith who rifled it from distance into the side netting.  3-1.

By now it was obvious we had no midfield at all.  I felt for poor Will Seager who looked rather lost in the centre after being asked to do a job to bolster it.  Any central defender who starts the game as left back then gets moved to central midfield would look lost.  Vigil Van Dyke would look lost.  An out and out defensive midfielder is needed urgently.

Half time needed a chocolate bar in addition to a cup of tea to calm down.  With glucose running giddily through my veins I stepped out looking forward to the second half.  This optimism was almost rewarded as Travis grabbed the game from the scruff of the neck and could have had a couple himself.  Three local kids who stayed down our end for "bants" suddenly didn't fancy it and walked back to join their mates.  The comeback was on...

No, it wasn't.  Leatherhead allowed Bognor Regis to overrun us not once but twice in the same move as a deflected shot was gathered on the goal line and crossed back in for a another headed goal.

At this point I decided to make my way home and enjoy the surprise road closures Bognor Regis had laid on for us.  On the way out I was able to see Ikebusi receive two quick fire yellows and hear the cheer for their fifth as I reached the road.

We were at least spared dropping to the bottom of the table by Corinthian-Casuals inability to retain a lead and Wingate & Finchley being managed by Spencer.  On to Saturday and the visit of Cheshunt...

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Travelling Tanners

After celebrating the first win I sat down and took stock of my season so far.  I've realised I haven't been good enough.  I've recycled jokes, been overly sarcastic and not been myself.  It has been difficult though, I've missed games through travel but I am not here to make excuses.  Enough is enough.  My season starts tonight with the trip to Bognor Regis.

Bognor Regis sit just above us on the table and the last time we played them we put four goals past them, beating them 4-0 at their place.  They were the true victors though as their fans stayed and sung until the end...

Kick off at 7.45.  Directions can be found here.  See you there!

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Tanners 1 - 0 Bowers Pitsea

Leatherhead get their first win of the season thanks to my positivity and an Olutade goal.

We started brightly.  Travis was causing problems down our right and it was from him we got our goal.  We pounced on a cross and fired powerfully at the 'keeper who could only spill it into the path of Ibz who instinctively headed it home.

Second half and Leatherhead started the game with their trademark laissez faire approach and were it not for an excellent save from Zak we would have conceded.  This was a storm we had to weather for 15 minutes before the sense of inevitability subsided.

Then we looked a decent side again and on two occasions we went narrowly wide of the post.  We also were spared by a ref who adjudged a foul to have occurred outside the box where some may have seen it another way.

Three points in the bag and Nikki can finally be himself again in front of the cameras again.  Bognor Regis Town on Tuesday...