Wednesday 8 September 2021

Ground #355 - West Street

Date: 28th August 2021
Ground: West Street
Location: Coggeshall, Essex

My fifth new ground of 2021 was on Saturday 28th August at West Street in Coggeshall, Essex. The game was Coggeshall Town vs. Romford in the Isthmian League North Division.

West Street is, as the name suggests, to the west of the town of Coggeshall. The road runs close to the A120 with the venue surrounded by fields to the south and west. On the northern side is the road itself with houses beyond while there is a garden centre on the eastern flank. The site is three miles north-west of the nearest railway station in Kelvedon and has been home to the club since 1960.

The main stand is on the northern side of the ground consisting of three rows of covered seating. Either side of this is uncovered standing in front of a grass bank. There is no spectator viewing on the grass bank itself but at the top of it is more uncovered hard standing to get a higher view. The southern side of the ground is more limited on space. There is uncovered standing for the eastern and western thirds of this side with the middle not connected as it has to make space for the two dugouts with a gantry in between. 

The eastern side is uncovered standing with a sloped grass bank behind while the western end has a covered stand for the whole of its length. Behind it situated on an upper level is a decking section with picnic benches, a food outlet and a very nice modern clubhouse which would rival any others from this level of the pyramid. Finally there is a separate dressing room building at the top of the north-west corner.

This was the second game of the league season - visitors Romford had experienced a 7-0 hiding at home to Maldon & Tiptree on the opening day so were keen to put that behind them and get off the bottom of the table. They started the stronger of the two sides and took the lead in the 17th minute when Christian Adu Gyamfi did well to fend off defender on right before squaring for Steve Carvell in the box. Carvell had no-one near him so plenty of time to advance and smash into the roof of net from close range. Gyamfi almost grabbed a goal himself ten minutes later after a mix-up between Coggeshall goalie Matthew Cafer and defender Jayden Gipson saw the ball knocked in the direction of the goal. Gyamfi chased after it but couldn't prevent it going just the wrong side of the post. Coggeshall started to come back into the game around the half-hour mark with Jermain Francis heading just over from in the area. The hosts equalised in the 38th minute with a nice clipped ball into the box found Sam Bantick who deftly lofted over the Romford keeper from 12 yards. However the home side fell behind a minute before half-time after a goal-line scramble culminated in Jesse Olukuku poking in. The goals continued in the second half with Coggeshall achieving parity again in the 57th minute - a cross into the box saw Sam Bantick pushed over, play was waved on and the ball ended up with Tyler Christian-Law at the back post who powered a header home. The scorerline was short-lived though as Romford got their noses in front for the third time just five minutes later. A lofted ball from the right found Aundre Wholas-Spencer at far post who steered an excellent finish across goal into the far corner. The game continued back and forth and in the final minutes Romford fell back to defend Coggeshall's attempt to get something out of the game. However there would be no third equaliser and Romford put their opening day result behind them with a hard-fought win.

Result: Coggeshall Town 2-3 Romford
Division: Isthmian League North Division
Attendance: 108

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