DIVISION ONE NORTH
Ilford 1 Needham Market 6
Danny Laws is confident of a perfect run of form after the Marketmen ended a winless sequence with a much-needed victory.
Following a 6-1 victory over Ware in the second round of the Ryman League Cup on Tuesday night, Needham matched the scoreline, as Ollie Fenn’s opener was added to by Duane Wright, and braces from Nathan Clarke and James Evans clinched the rampant visitors their first league win seven matches.
Laws’ charges will now look to claim their first league win at home with high-flying Maldon and Tiptree’s visit to Bloomfields tomorrow (3pm) followed by Waltham Forest on Tuesday (7.45pm) and, after securing back-to-back success, the manager believes his newly-rejuvenated squad will do just that.
“I was delighted to get the three points, but even more so by the way we got them so emphatically,” he said.
“However, saying that, we still haven’t had a league win at home and so we want to change that quickly and give the fans something to cheer.
“Maldon are flying high but we have to be confident of winning and back ourselves do just that.
“Tuesday will also be tough but again we have a good chance of winning.
“We had a blip but everyone remained positive and we have every right to be confident.”
Against their struggling hosts, Needham started positively and broke the deadlock as Fenn reacted quickest to Sam Newson’s header coming back off the crossbar to fire home the rebound.
Needham doubled their advantage shortly after as Wright was on hand to prod the ball over the line after a mistake by host custodian Daniel Mukaku.
Ilford began to grow into the game and found a way back into the encounter after 26 minutes as Warren Mfulu struck to reduce the deficit.
However, the visitors were gifted a chance to re-establish their two-goal lead after 32 minutes when they were awarded a penalty, which Evans dispatched confidently for a 3-1 half-time lead.
In the 63rd minute Evans grabbed his second of the afternoon, firing home a rebound after James Hubbard saw his effort parried away.
Clarke then wrapped up a convincing display, converting at the near post after 78 minutes, before adding his second with a well-taken finish in injury time.