Pharrell Anderson gave the Cooks an early lead with his 8th goal of the season on the 3G at St Ives Town, but Matty Allan earned his side a share of the spoils with his 19th.
Saturday 28th January 2023
UHLSPORT UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE – PREMIER DIVISION SOUTH
GODMANCHESTER ROVERS (1) 1 COGENHOE UNITED (1) 1
(Played at St Ives Town F.C)
ATT; 250 (as per Full-Time)
With the pitch at Bearscroft Road still suffering the after-effects of the Snow, rain and ice of the previous few weeks, Godmanchester switched the venue of the game to St Ives Town and their new 3G surface to ensure the game would go ahead.
Scott Carlin brought Kodi Briggs back into the starting line-up following several weeks on the sidelines with a knee injury, replacing the unavailable Lewis Green and Pharrell Anderson returned originally in place of Jessi Obeng, but Jessi was given a reprieve as he swapped places with Harry Waple-Moors who had pulled up in the warm-ups. Alex Parkes also returned to the squad but had to settle for a place on the bench.
We backed off Josh Lewis a little in the centre and allowed him the chance to bring the ball forward and shoot from distance with Bruce Tsinosis blocking his effort, then Anderson broke down the right flank before putting the ball across for Bailey Weatherly, but he didn’t manage to get round it enough to steer it on target. A scrappy break by the home side saw a number of challenges before Ben Tait found himself inside the box with the ball but his attempt at squaring was cut out by Perry Ronayne on the edge of the 6-yard box. The pace of Anderson looked like it might have got him clear just to the right of centre only for an excellent challenge from the experienced Richard Chadwick to stop him in his tracks, then the Cooks had the first shot on target when Louie Barrett cut inside the box on the right, but his left footed effort was easily gathered by George Whitehall in the Goddy goal.
Cogenhoe took the lead with 7 minutes played as Anderson took advantage of an error at the back. The home side probably should have cleared the ball up field on their right, but instead it came to Rob Ruddy in the centre a few yards outside of his own penalty area and when he failed to control it, Anderson moved on to the bouncing ball and calmly lifted over the stranded keeper’s head from 20-yards out. Bit of a howler from Goddy, but a superbly executed finish by Pharrell.
Barrett fouled Sammy Fisher rather needlessly just beyond the left corner of our box giving the much-travelled Declan Rogers (including one appearance for Cogenhoe during Craig Adams brief spell in charge) a chance to send in high and deep free-kick, but Ash Bodycote took it cleanly before in the incoming blue shirt could get to it beyond the back post. Barrett made a good run down the right before pulling the ball back across the box. It was a home defender who got the first touch to take it away from goal, but only as far as Paddy Cichosz who hit it first time, but he wasn’t able to direct it on target. Anderson battled for a high ball and it dropped to Bailey Weatherly on the edge of the box and he took it down beautifully on his chest before hitting a corker of a volley that took the slightest of deflections on its way to crashing against the crossbar with the keeper well beaten.
Goddy had a chance when a cross from the left was headed out by Barrett and Sam Tagg was given a good sight of goal on the edge of the box, but he fired his first time shot wide of the target. Anderson worked past his man on the left before curling a shot over the top, then good work by Matty Allan on the right side of the box created a chance for Tagg in the middle and he forced Bodycote to get down and make an excellent save to deny him and when Mo Hammza followed up, it was a far more routine save for the Cooks number one. Obeng played a good ball out to Briggs on the right and although his cross was over Weatherly’s head, the powerful striker chased to win it before cutting back inside and firing a powerful shot that Whitehall did really well to tip over the top. Great save from the Goddy keeper leaving Weatherly frustrated as he continues to search for is first goal for the Cooks after earlier being denied by the woodwork. Will Bates sent Obeng clear down the right and his cross saw Weatherly nip in at the near post, but Whitehall did well and gathered the ball before launching a big kick down the centre that looked to have put Hammza clear on goal, but his first touch was a poor one and the chance was gone. Obeng fed Barrett inside the box on the right and he went past Fisher before drilling in a cross that Whitehall caught cleanly above his head at the near post.
Bodycote had to receive a second bout of treatment from Jules on the half-hour giving us a ‘time-out’ as both gaffers called their players in for a team-brief, but thankfully the keeper was ok to continue. Tom Spark fired a low shot wide of the far post from just inside the box on the right, then Bates did well to nod on an Obeng cross, but the ball wouldn’t drop for Barrett who was unable to take advantage inside the box. Godmanchester drew themselves level on 36 minutes as Allan celebrated his 19th goal of the campaign. A true striker’s goal, taking a touch as the ball came in from the right before swivelling and placing a low shot past Bodycote from the centre of the box.
Goddy were clearly boosted by their equaliser and Hammza should have put Allan clear through, but his pass wasn’t what he had been looking for, then Ban Tait was put in a good position inside the box on the right, but he put his cross over the bar. Ruddy could have made up for his earlier error when a Rogers free-kick picked him out unmarked at the far post, but he got his header all wrong and it bounced off his head and over the bar. Weatherly had already been warned for a few late challenges as defenders cleared their lines and he did one too many on 43 minutes leaving Ellis Mills little option but to reach into his pocket and show him the game’s first yellow card. Obeng touched the ball wide to Barrett who went past Fisher, but opted to go for goal from a very tight angle and his powerful strike flew over the angle of near post and bar, then Obeng had the final chance of the half, but placed his shot the wrong side of the far post.
Half-time; Goddy 1 Cooks 1
No changes from either manager at the break, but Goddy were first to show as Bodycote saved Allan’s low effort as the striker turned well on the edge of the box, then down the bottom end, Whitehall was quickly off his line to beat Weatherly to a through ball just inside his area. A nice move from the Cooks that involved Bates, Cichosz, Obeng and Barrett created an opportunity for Anderson, but his shot was just wide, then Barrett did well down the right only for his cross to be cut out by Ruddy. A Kyle Ansell free-kick was a little too high for Barrett and even though he managed to stretch and get his head to it, he had no chance of directing it on target. The first change came on 50 minutes as Tagg made way for Tommy Dear. A good turn and cross from Anderson went straight across the face of the goal, then Briggs robbed his man deep inside the Goddy half and decided not to burst into the box, but instead opted to cut back inside and find Weatherly 20-yards out and his shot under pressure flew wide of the mark.
Anderson hit a decent effort from 25-yards out that Whitehall had to palm away. Ansell sent the corner in and got it back via a Whitehall punch and his second effort was met by a downward header from Cichosz that was straight at the relieved keeper. Goddy made another change on 58 minutes as Josh Lewis made way for Jacob Joseph. A good ball from Rogers saw Allan whip in a cross that Bruce Tsinosis cleared, then Weatherly’s strong run saw him fouled a couple of yards outside the box on the left. It seemed a prime spot for Bates who had scored from this position against Godmanchester last season, but Ansell claimed it and he curled a left foot shot over and inside the wall and it clattered against the crossbar. Ansell rolled a quick free-kick up to Anderson inside the left of the box but his shot was blocked, then Fisher was booked for bringing down Anderson with 64 minutes gone. Ansell dinked this one into the box, but Whitehall dived at the feet of Obeng to claim the ball. The third change for Goddy followed as Hammza made way for Marley Edwards.
Cogenhoe broke away quickly from a Goddy corner and a great ball from Weatherly sent Anderson into the box on the left and although he got the better of Joseph to get into a shooting position, the sub full-back had forced him a little wide and he sliced his shot from an angle a yard the wrong side of the near post. Bates got a foot in to send Anderson though again and this time he cut back inside Jacobs to create space for a shot, but the result was the same as he fired his effort wide of the near post again. Allan saw a looping header go over the bar and when Obeng tripped Dear on the edge of the box, this was prime Declan Rogers land. He has had a habit of scoring against the Cooks over the years for numerous clubs, but perhaps the old magic is now fading as he hit his free-kick straight at the wall. Bodycote made a brave save as Allan hit a first time shot from deep in the box following a low ball in from the left, then he had to deal with a Dear shot from outside the box, but that was more-or-less straight at him.
Fisher was adjudged to have fouled Anderson 25-yards out in a central position and Ansell saw this as another chance to show what he has in his armour. He struck it well and Whitehall could only watch and hope as it dipped beyond his reach, only to hit the bar yet again. Sometimes it just isn’t your day and Kyle must have been feeling that when he saw the ball come back off the woodwork once more. Spark hit a well-struck shot from the right side of the box that was destined for the far corner of the net had Bodycote not dived at full-stretch to push the ball away with another super save. Allan got past Ronayne just outside the box on the right and the Cooks defender brought him down to earn a yellow card for doing so. Rogers sent the free-kick in, but Bodycote reached up to turn it away at the far post.
On 81 minutes we had a plethora of subs as Carlin made three changes at the same time that Goddy took off Rogers and replaced him with Matt Green. Tsinosis, Obeng and Barrett were all given a rest with Luca Purse, Harry Waple-Moors and Cal Farmer coming on. Bates tried a volley from 30-yards that looped up off his boot and dropped into the keepers arms just before a deep Spark cross from the right had to be tipped away by Bodycote at the back post. Cichosz picked up a yellow card for a hefty challenge on Spark and he was shortly subbed off with Alex Parkes taking his place in midfield. Ronayne dinked a ball over the top that Whitehall had to come out of his area to clear, then despite being off balance, Waple-Moors managed to get a shot on target from the edge of the area, but Whitehall was able to deal with it comfortably. Another excellent save by Bodycote saw him dive to his right to keep out Tait’s well-hit shot from the edge of the box, then deep into injury time, Spark turned and beat Bodycote with a low shot, but the ball hit the base of the post and the Cooks keeper dived on the loose ball. Unlucky on the Goddy man, but Bodycote didn’t deserve to be on the losing side today and also you must remember the fact that we had previously hit the woodwork three times.
A 1-1 draw, could have been 4-4 on another day, but I feel the point is just about right today as neither team deserved to come away with nothing. A good entertaining game played on the excellent new 3G surface at St Ives Town. My Cooks man-of-the-match today goes to Ash Bodycote who made some superb saves today, but on the whole this was a good performance from the team and we could easily have won it on another day. A point on the road is not to be sniffed at when you are down the bottom, but we now face some tough tests starting on Tuesday night when we host leaders Rugby Town, then the following Saturday we have a change of fixtures as we now host fifth placed Coventry United instead of fellow strugglers Eynesbury.
Goddy; 1. George Whitehall 2.Josh Lewis (sub 12. Jacob Joseph 58) 3. Sammy Fisher 4. Richard Chadwick 5. Rob Ruddy 6. Declan Rogers © (sub 15. Matt Green 81) 7. Tom Spark 8. Ben Tait 9. Matty Allan 10. Sam Tagg (sub 17. Tommy Dear 55) 11. Mo Mammza (sub 14. Marley Edwards 65). Sub unused 16. Will Jolly.
Yellow card; Fisher (64) Foul.
Cooks; 1. Ash Bodycote 2. Perry Ronayne 3. Kodi Briggs 4. Paddy Cichosz © (sub 15. Alex Parkes 89) 5. Kyle Ansell 6. Bruce Tsinosis (sub 12. Luca Purse 81) 7. Louis Barrett (sub 14. Cal Farmer 81) 8. Will Bates 9. Pharrell Anderson 10. Bailey Weatherly 16. Jessi Obeng (sub 11. Harry Waple-Moors 81). Sub not used; 20. Jamie Hall.
Yellow cards; 10. Weatherly (43) Foul. Ronayne (79) Foul. Cichosz (87) Foul.
Referee; Ellis Mills
Assts; Neil Arthur & Gary Halliday.