The Cooks were hammered by promotion chasing Racing Club Warwick as our hosts reclaimed second place with a resounding 5-0 win.
Saturday 11th November 2023
UNITED COUNTIES LEAGUE – PREMIER DIVISION SOUTH
RACING CLUB WARWICK (3) 5 COGENHOE UNITED (0) 0
Hamp 36, 38
The Cooks made the trip to the county town of Warwickshire to face a Racing Club team that they had beaten 3-2 at Compton Park back in early September with Scott Carlin forced into a number of changes to his line-up. There were debut starts for John Meadows in goal and the returning Ben Gough at centre-back to replace the departed North and Osoimoejiokhian, with Callum Swain, Alex Parkes, Bailey Weatherly, Sharma Bako and Dalton Leon all included in the starting eleven. Dennis Nkrumah has also returned to the club and was named amongst the five subs, along with Ben Dimond, Jai Newell-Hollely, Jack Connor and Earl Atat. Callum Farmer was suspended, Dylan Wilson away and Kieron Mobbs left right out of the squad which I assume is due to injury as he was watching the game and has been performing well. Racers boss Scott Easterlow had the added weight of the dreaded manager of the month award presented to him before the game by UCL Chairman Alan Poulain, while he made just the one personel change to his starting eleven from Tuesday night’s impressive win over Loughborough Students in the KO Cup with the experienced Callum Carsley taking over from Jay Dlionga who dropped down to the bench.
The game got off to a lively start with RCW keeper Brad Catlow the unfortunate one to be facing the setting sun for a good half hour. Josh Parsons found himself with the space to make it into the box where his shot was stopped by the boot of Gough, while Bako played a nice ball into the home penalty area to find the feet of Weatherly and although he couldn’t work the space needed for a shot with two defenders on him, Sonny Knights found Bako on the edge of the box and he forced a save out of Catlow with his low effort. A dangerous driven cross from Carsley went behind for a goal-kick off a teammate at the near post while Troy Johnston slipped a pass through to Bako, but his shot from ten yards outside the box was ten feet over the top as it cleared the nursery and headed down the Hampton Road. The Racers had a shout for a penalty turned down, but they took the lead on 11 minutes through Josh Parsons who was played clear by Ryan Quinn just to the left of centre inside the box and he gave Meadows no chance with his powerful strike.
I had thought that Ryan Andrews had been booked for a foul on Knights as referee Luke Thorne got his book out of his pocket as he lectured him, but later events proved me wrong on this one. Leon dinked a ball up to Weatherly who made for goal, but Kyle Barnett played the skipper’s role with a great piece of defending to deny him a shot, then Parsons just failed to get his head onto a wicked Carsley cross at the far post with the goal gaping. Charlie Jones turned deep inside the box and saw his shot deflect wide for a corner as Warwick turned the screw on the game, then Parson’s fired well over with a 30-yard free-kick after Knights had pulled the shirt of Jones. A very nice touch from Knights gave Parkes the ball at his feet and he sent Bako down the right flank, but his eventual cross was taken comfortably by Catlow. Gough was again the saviour as he blocked Louis Monaghan’s first-time close range shot after some great work by Quinn, then Archie Hamp left Swain in trouble as he headed the ball over him to send Quinn racing away down the right before setting up Monaghan inside the box and his first time shot curled just wide of the target. Parsons scuffed a good chance wide, while down the other end a Leon cross was held comfortable at the near post by Catlow.
The home side had been knocking on the door for a second goal and it came on 36 minutes. Hamp drilled in a cross that Gough blocked, but when the ball came back to the Warwick number two, he hit a sweet shot into the far corner to double his side’s advantage with a great finish. Monaghan sent over a deep cross that Parson’s met on the volley at the far post with Mallard doing well to block it behind for a corner. Joy was short lived for the Cooks though as Hamp arrived unmarked at the near post to net with a simple header from Quinn’s well taken delivery. 3-0 with 38 minutes gone and the home side were totally in charge now. James Hancocks volleyed wide from the edge of the box, Gough blocked a Parsons shot with the ball spinning to Meadows and a great chest down by Hamp allowed Andrews to set up Monaghan, but again Gough read the situation well and blocked his shot. Hamp sent the pacy Quinn a little too wide inside the box on the right, but he still managed to send the ball back across the area to pick out Hamp’s run only for Gough to block as he steered the ball at goal.
Half-Time; Racers 3 Cooks 0
There was one change at the break with Earl Atat taking over from Swain, but swapping side’s with Bullement. It took the home side just 60-seconds to add to their tally when poor play from the Cooks allowed James Hancocks to run deep into the box on the left before firing a shot across the keeper and just inside the far post which was exactly what the Cooks didn’t need if they were to salvage anything from this game. Nkrumah came on for Johnston on 51 minutes while good control by Jones inside the box would almost certainly have led to another goal had Atat not made a very timely interception just before the Racers made their first change with Hancocks making way for Oakley Hazell. Knights was booked for a foul on Parsons after 56 minutes just before Mallard made a great block as he got in the way of a rocket of a shot hit by Hamp and this allowed Knights to break quickly, but support was slow and he ended up stretching to poke the ball towards goal from outside the box.
Meadows got up to punch a corner and then saved Jones’ low shot after Carsley had teed him up, but it was 5-0 on 59 minutes when Monaghan’s shot from a couple of yards inside the box was placed just inside the keeper’s left-hand post as Cogenhoe’s afternoon got even worse. The Cooks brought on Connor for Weatherly before the restart, while Easterlow mad a treble change with Cameron Ebbutt, Luke Shearer and Jay Dlionga all coming on. Shearer headed wide from a Dlionga corner as two of the subs quickly made an impact, while Carlin replaced Bako with Newell-Hollely after 67 minutes. Atat broke quickly and exchanged passes with Hollely before whipping in a cross that Catlow caught cleanly, then the last change of the game saw Parkes limp off to be replaced by Dimond with fifteen minutes remaining.
Dlionga sent over a dangerous cross and Carsley lifted it back into the edge of the 6-yard box where Ebbutt met it with a powerful header that Meadows got his hand to on his goal line with a great reflex save.
Leon was shown the yellow card for a foul on 77 minutes while the Cooks had a good chance when Connor intercepted a pass and played Hollely clear in the box, but Catlow made a very good save to deny him his first goal in Cooks colours. Moments later another chance came the way of the visitors as Knights showed good control inside the box before turning to shoot, but his effort flew the wrong side of the far post. The Cooks continued to have a spell of attacking play late on with Connor chesting down Atat’s cross to Nkrumah who fed Knights in the centre, but he couldn’t get the ball out from under his feet and ended up fouling his marker. Meadows saved Jamie Ashmore’s 25-yard low free-kick while Shearer showed a great turn of pace before sending over a decent cross that Meadows took well. We were already into stoppage time when Andrews fouled Dimond on the halfway line with the Cooks man reacting which led to a mini skirmish and this time Thorne definitely showed the Racers number four his yellow card, as he did also to Dimond. The last action of the game resulted in Gough cutting out Shearer’s pull back after a great run by the Racers sub, but the day belonged solely to the home side who thoroughly deserved the three points this afternoon.
Not a lot you can say after that really, the boys were well beaten today by a team that were sharper, quicker and completely controlled the midfield for a majority of the match. Ben Gough gets my man-of-the-match for all those blocks and cut outs he made and as a final note, we could easily have ended up on the wrong end of a much bigger scoreline today if the home team handed lost their fluency with four changes in the first quarter of the second half.
Next week we head to Daventry Town and hopefully we will fair better than we did at home to them when they turned us over 5-1 a few weeks back.
R.C Warwick; 1. Bradley Catlow 2. Archie Hamp (sub 16. Jay Dlionga 59) 3. Callum Carsley 4. Ryan Andrews 5. Jamie Ashmore 6. Kyle Barnett © 7. Ryan Quinn 8 James Hancocks (sub 15. Oakley Hazell 53) 9. Louie Monaghan 10. Josh Parsons (sub 14. Luke Shearer 59) 11. Charlie Jones (sub 12. Cameron Ebbutt 59)
Cooks; 1. John Meadows 2. Luke Bullement 3. Callum Swain (sub 17. Earl Atat ht) 4. Alex Parkes (sub 12. Ben Dimond 75) 5. Ben Gough 6. Harley Mallard © 7. Sharma Bako (sub 14. Jai Newell-Hollely 67) 8. Troy Johnston (sub 16. Dennis Nkrumah 51) 9. Bailey Weatherly (sub 15. Jack Connor 59) 10. Dalton Leon 11. Sonny Knights
Referee; Luke Thorne
Assts; Daniel Hollins & Steve Davies
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