Boss Sturrock impressed with Needham duo

FOOTBALL - Needham Market FC v East Thurrock United
FOOTBALL - Needham Market FC v East Thurrock United
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Needham Market 0

Southend United 5

by Derek Bish at Bloomfields

PAUL Sturrock singled out Needham Market’s Bradley Barber and Pip Boyland for special praise after his Southend United outfit won 5-0 at Bloomfields on Monday night.

The Shrimpers brought a side made up of a mixture of first-team players, youngsters and trialists – including former Premier League player Vincent Pericard.

And despite the one-sided 5-0 result, Sturrock was full of praise for the Marketmen, as a team and a club.

Speaking about Bradley Barber, he said: “He was a very tidy player – he made the step up to play against pros.

“Generally, I thought they had some decent players. The right centre-half (Pip Boyland) looked small, but by hell he can jump.

“The people here are very nice. The board and the manager are nice people and we’ll be back to give them another game in the middle of winter.”

The Shrimpers took a little over four minutes to go in front when Namibian trialist Wilko Risser beat the offside trap, rounded Andrew Plummer and tucked the ball home.

Pericard wasted a couple of efforts to double Southend’s lead before Plummer made an athletic save when palming away Risser’s looping header from Ryan Leonard’s cross.

United’s second goal finally came in the 36th minute when Risser was adjudged to have been brought down by Lewis Pemberton and Harry Crawford netted the resultant spot-kick.

The closest Needham got to a goal was just three minutes later when Ollie Fenn met Deakin Napier’s left-wing corner, but saw his header cleared off the line by Andre Blackman, despite appeals for a goal.

After the break, Luke Prosser stabbed in Blackman’s corner, Pericard tucked in from close range and George Smith fired into the top right-hand corner having exchanged passes with Risser.

Gavin Johnson narrowly headed another Napier corner wide and substitute Luke Wade forced Daniel Bentley into a fine save at point-blank range, while at the other end Kyle Asante rattled the crossbar from a free-kick as Southend ran out 5-0 winners.

Needham: Plummer, Pemberton (Evans 73), R Barber (Sloots 65), B Barber (De’Ath 80), Boyland, Johnson, Napier, Fenn (Foster 73), Bloomfield (Wade 59), Wright (Mayhew 59), Thrower (Newson 65).

Southend: Bentley, Leonard, Blackman (Nesbitt 80), Sawyer (Artemi 75), Coughlan, Prosser, James-Lewis (Currie 63), Woodyard (Smith 75), Crawford (Asanate 63), Pericard (Paterson 80), Risser.

Attendance: 230.