YOUR WEEKEND PREVIEW STARTS HERE:
CYRIL ANEKSTEIN CUP ROUND ONE
BRADY MACCABI vs MACCABI LONDON LIONS BLUE
Bouncebackability is the name of the game for both Brady Maccabi and Lions Blue on Sunday.
Brady saw their impressive start halted by a red-hot Redbridge team. Reiss Mogilner maintained his goal a game record and Clark Norton scored his first MGBSFL goal, but the management team of Joel Nathan, Josh Dagul and Elliot Dagul have been working hard to ensure they will be firing for the big derby at the Lane.
Nathan told JC Sport: “Following a great start, we came down to earth last week and the boys are determined to put that behind them as they look to make progress in the cup against a very good young MLL team which includes a number of boys who have played together for a number of years.
“We know we will be involved in real battle at the Lane but it is something we are looking forward too.”
The Lions lost a seven-goal thriller in the Herts County Cup. Benji Weinberger maintained his excellent start to the season with a hat-trick – and none of his teammates are trying to take one off him this time!
Having already beaten one of their Rowley Lane rivals this season, Blues boss Sam Marchant is determined to put on a good show and maintain bragging rights.
I’m predicting a high octane affair, with lots of energy bars needed on the sidelines.
JC team news: Brady have a full squad to choose from.
LIONS: Harpin, Behar, Kingston, Linden, Brafman, Anders, Perez, Barnett, Nezri, Abadi, Cohen, Gaon, Winters, Bloom, Kenley
Venue – Rowley Lane, Ref – Daniel Fox, KO – 10am
JC star man: Clark Norton (Brady)
DC Prediction: Brady 1 Lions 1 (AET - Lions to win on penalties)
FAITHFOLD A vs REDBRIDGE JEWISH CARE A
There’s an intriguing battle between two former League Cup winners on Sunday as first division Faithfold host Premier Division giants Redbridge.
Redbridge made a real statement of intent in their opening fixture against previously unbeaten Brady last week, with Daniel Garfinkle and Scott Oldstein the stars of the show.
Garfinkle is desperate to make a return trip to Wingate & Finchley later in the season and if his performance on Matchday Four is anything to go by then he will be a contender for Player of the Year. Gaffer Jon Jacobs described him as “unplayable” in the 5-2 win last week.
Faithfold have nothing to lose and with a passionate home crowd expected, I expect manager Avi Markiewicz to set his team up to try and frustrate Redbridge and try and pinch something on the counter-attack.
Looking ahead to the tie, player-manager Markiewicz told JC Sport: "Big game this week for us and where we made a name for ourselves last year was in the cups.
"Last season, as RCUK, we managed to beat the champions, Oakwood and deservedly so proving that by also beating Premier Division Camden and only loosing to a sublime Lions Masters performance.
"We have had a fair few comings and goings and Redbridge, with the likes of Garfinkle, are going to be extreme tough but we still believe that we can win.
Avi Garson and Leor Harel will be big players for them but they will need to start well and ride their luck if they are to get any joy.
I can see Faithfold huffing and puffing but in the end RJC’s experience will prove decisive.
JC team news: With the exception of Markiewicz, still out with a hamstring, Faithfold have almost a fully fit and available squad.
Venue - The Hive, Ref – Richard Jaye, KO – 9.50am
JC star man: Nate Kashket (Redbridge)
DC Prediction: Faithfold 1 RJC 3
MACCABI LONDON LIONS WHITE vs REAL HENDON
Real Hendon are confident of filling the away end at Rowley Lane for the biggest game in their history.
They don’t come much bigger than Lions away in the cup and manager Martin Smulovitch has some interesting selection decisions to make ahead of a game everyone at the club wants to be involved in.
Press officer Rafi Addlestone has been inundated with press enquiries ahead of kick-off. Of course he saved the best till last.
“I could say that we're looking forward to the big day out, at the fancy stadium, against the well fancied team,” he told JC Sport.
“But I'll tell you what Danny, Real Hendon don't roll over for anybody. We're in this contest to win it. Whatever the scoreline, the Lions will know that they've been in a battle. The bees will be buzzing early Sunday morning at Rowley Lane, ready to sting.”
The wait continues for James Gershfield and his first win since taking charge of the Lions. And with Frank De Boer and Carlo Ancelotti already on the scrapheap, he knows the pressure is slowly building ahead of what is surely a must-win.
With Connor Perl and Kiki Levin starting the season in fine fettle, Gershfield will set his team up to be hard to get behind and encourage them to show a ruthless streak in the final third.
But the longer Real are able to stay on level terms, the more nerves could play a part.
Venue – Rowley Lane, Ref – Darryl Colmans, KO – 10am
JC star man: Jack Mattey (Lions)
DC Prediction: Lions 4 Real 1
LOS BLANCOS vs FAITHFOLD B
Alan Hansen would’ve had a field day tucking into the Faithfold defending in last week’s tussle against Catford.
They rolled over far too easily and rather than criticise, let’s just say the hope is they will only get better.
With Avi Garson having been promoted and Richard Fogelman moving on, they are going to have to find the goals from somewhere else. But I can’t see them getting much joy in Borehamwood this weekend and their wait for a first win will continue a little while longer.
Blancos are not expected to be at full-strength for the tie, but I still expect them have far too much for the Green.
Joint-manager Joel Salomon told JC Sport: “We’re a bit lighter on numbers with just one sub, but we’ve started the season well and are getting better by the game.
“Every time we step out at the Hertswood Centre, we expect a win.”
Blancos have their tails up after a solid start and a nice cup run will keep them dreaming of Wingate.
JC team news: Faithfold welcome back several players including JJ Marache, Sam Garson and debutants Joel Becker and Alex Davies.
Venue – Hertswood, Ref – Bob Caplin, KO – 10.15am
JC star man: Luke Strauss (Blancos)
DC Prediction: Blancos 4 Faithfold 0
MGBSFL PREMIER DIVISION
NORTH LONDON RAIDERS A vs HENDON UNITED SPORTS CLUB
There’s a cracker in store at Brunel where the MGBSFL match of the day sees title hopefuls Raiders and Hendon go head to head.
Two of the league’s most celebrated teams are ready to rumble in what promises to be a fascinating contest.
NLR showed tremendous character to recover from two goals down to beat Lions White last weekend. The match marked former Player of the Year Liron Mannie’s first start and it was no surprise to see him on the scoresheet in a contest where Ben Joseph and Alex Moss were the star performers.
Ahead of kick-off, NLR boss Dan Shafron told JC Sport: “Raiders and Hendon always produce exciting, tough games and we are all looking forward to Sunday.
“We will look to be competitive, play with plenty of aggression with and without the ball and follow up with another good performance following last weekend.
“It’s these types of games that you are always excited to be involved in and we can’t wait.”
Hendon have been frustrated by their opponents since winning the one and only match that actually went ahead.
But I’m sure match sharpness will not be an issue for the reds who will be keen to impress.
Boss Greg Corin told JC Sport: "We're very much looking forward to getting our season going after the disappointment of two cancelled matches over the last couple of weeks.
"It's a great opportunity to bed in our new players, playing a strong side like Raiders so early in the season.
"No doubt, it will be a tough test for the team but we're looking forward to it."
As always, this will be a great advert for the MGBSFL. Raiders will have their chances but I have a sneaky suspicion it will be Hendon's day
JC team news: Alex Bloch joins Jordan Marks on NLR’s long-term injury list. Matt Stock and Alex Kaye are close to return. Josh Pistol begins his two-match suspension. Skipper David Rhodes also misses out. Zack Neiman, Justin Spiro and Josh Goldstein return.
Hendon welcome back into their squad Greg Corin, Josh Bentley and Larry Cohen. Yoav Kestenbaum is still unavailable along with Rocky Spitzer.
Venue - Brunel, Ref – Andy Myerson, KO – 10am
JC star man: Larry Cohen (Hendon)
DC Prediction: Raiders 1 Hendon 2
NORTH LONDON RAIDERS B vs REDBRIDGE JEWISH CARE B
No doubt the Raiders B management will have gone out for a couple of lattes with C team boss Sam Rose for the low-down on Redbridge B following their cup clash last weekend.
The fact Redbridge came through unscathed tells you plenty about them, with Josh Kalinsky’s growing reputation going up a couple of notches.
Redbridge managers Josh Hambling and Daniel Lipman have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure the season will be a successful one. And given they are both top boys, they will also keep things entertaining on and off the pitch.
Hambling told JC Sport: “As everyone in Essex knows travelling to Brunel is probably the worst journey in life closely followed by rush hour at Henley’s Corner. So you can imagine my players delight in being told The Ark was this weeks port of call. 99 per cent of the squad declared themselves “OUT” within two minutes.
“Slowly I’ve talked some of them round but I’m going to be missing a few this week (no mind games!).
“With any luck this will be a great chance for myself to dust off the old World Cup boots and show these boys how it’s done in centre mid.”
Hambling and Lipman splashed the cash to bring in an old face over the summer and they are confident he will start firing.
“Dan ‘Flash’ Gordon has promised me he’ll score 20 goals before Chanukah, so I’m tipping him to get off the mark Sunday,” added Hambling.
“Dan Andrews is still looking for the match ball at Brunel after he skied a free-kick 80 feet last week so literally no idea if he’ll be playing!
“We know Raiders are a strong team with a few familiar faces to myself from the last EMFT. I’ll be looking forward to seeing these lads in action on Sunday. It will be a good contest where I think the game will be won or lost in midfield.
“I’m sure my best bud Dan Shaf will give the B’s a helping hand as he keeps telling me he’s going to drop half of his squad in our Sunday afternoon catch-ups!”
Given their A-list personnel and work-rate, I cannot see Raiders failing to score in many matches. Jake Gilbert is on fire at the minute and Ricky Lawrence has given then another dimension.
Rob Blackman will be on a high following his finest game in a L’Orange shirt while Josh Green has an excellent goals to games ratio.
The combination of Matt Leader, Mark Leader and Anthony Goodmaker have a wealth of experience at this level and their collective performances will play a part in the final outcome.
JC team news: NLR "are blessed" with a lot of availability this week so it will be a tough call to select 14 let alone the starting XI. David Esterkin, Charles Braunstein and Danny Bloom return from their northern Rosh Hashanas, whilst Elliot Espinoza is available after last week's Birthday hangover and Brandon Sassoon is back following his Tough Mudder exploits.
Jacob Kaye, following a brief spell at Fairlop, and Yoni Fialka have joined Redbridge after a long summer break. Matt Kemp comes in goal this week as Brad Grant is away on a Johnston’s baby lotion expedition!
Venue – Ark Academy, Ref – Steve Levy, KO – 10am
JC star man: Mark Leader (NLR)
DC Prediction: NLR 2 RJC 1
REDBRIDGE JEWISH CARE C vs TEMPLE FORTUNE A
Redbridge will be looking to inflict more misery on a Temple Fortune team who have lost three on the spin.
Club chairman Nigel Kyte was keen to play down last week’s Anekstein Cup defeat against FC Team. He believes the result should be put into perspective as the victors fielded a number of players playing top-flight football last season.
On the flipside, on Sunday they will come face to face with a Redbridge team laced with several boys with Premier Division experience including goalkeeper Ben Rosenthal, Jerome Marks, Dean Ben Yosef, Darryl Green and Alex Aviram. So let’s see how they fare second time around.
Venue - Farilop, Ref – Brandon Pieters, KO – 10am
JC star man: Jason Patmore (RJC)
DC Prediction: RJC 3 Fortune 1
SCRABBLE FC vs L’EQUIPE
Promotion isn’t always the joyride it’s made out to be. Not all teams adjust immediately, as L’Equipe are finding out.
Forced to withdraw for their cup clash against Hendon United last weekend, Nick Stern’s troops will be out to break their duck against a Scrabble team in transition.
Scrabble boss Ray Abrahams has identified this as a must-win. Confidence is fairly fragile in both camps and the first goal could be crucial. If it goes the way of Scrabble they might just rediscover their best form.
Venue – Capital City, Ref – Martin Fox, KO – 10am
JC star man: Erez Noonoo (L’Equipe)
DC Prediction: Scrabble 2 L’Equipe 1
FAIRLOP FC vs BOCA JEWNIORS
If you’re looking for a home banker this weekend then this is your game. And it’s coming at the perfect time for a Fairlop team firing on all cylinders.
Not all teams cope favourably with the tag of favourites, so credit to Aaron Dias and his merry men for a job well done, so far.
But Dias knows nothing is won in September. Kai Vale was their matchwinner in the excellent cup win over first division Scrabble. Maintaining that level of performance will be key against a battling Boca.
Sefton Monk’s men have conceded 17 goals in their first two outings. And if the home side score early doors I fear the worst.
Venue – Redbridge Sports Centre, Ref – David Lazarus, KO – 10am
JC star man: Kai Vale (Fairlop)
DC Prediction: Fairlop 5 Boca 0
HERTSWOOD VALE vs BAYERN MINCHA
Alon Pinhas has warned his Bayern players against complacency for the weekend trip to Hertswood.
After impressing in front of the JC cameras last weekend, Daniel Holder and Pinhas admit it has been “hard to pick a squad this week,” with competition for places across the pitch.
Joint-manager Pinhas told JC Sport: “Ideally we would like to pick 14 men but we had about 18 boys available who are all on form and eager to get on that pitch.
“As expected and planned, we bounced back with a convincing cup victory last week after our slip-up to Fairlop the week before.
“This week we are expecting to continue our form and take all three points. The boys are all buzzing to get out there.”
Everyone who watched When Sunday Comes has been talking about the qualities of Adam Ellis and Bayern were wise to tie him down to a long-term contract in August.
Pinhas continued: “Adam Ellis who is on fire at the moment, and in-form skipper Jake Dayan, alongside with in-form vice-skipper are expected to cause Hertswood all sorts of issues on Sunday.
“However, we know Hertswood have some good players and will definitely be up for this match. Our boys know not to underestimate anyone.
“Sunday should be a good game but we are expecting to go home with three points.”
Hertswood have a horrible run of fixtures in October, with FC Team, Catford and leaders Fairlop FC to follow. But Jacob Emanuel will challenge his players to prove their have the talent to mix it with the best.
Joint-manager Jacob Emanuel told JC Sport: "A game we're looking forward to. We have a number of players returning following our 5-0 win against SHP, including Ben Davis, James Neidle and Gal Alkalay.
"We know it will be difficult, particularly with the threat of Adam Ellis but we know there's much more to Bayern than just him. They're a team pipped for promotion so we're looking to put in a performance to match them."
But when all is said and done, my money is firmly on Bayern.
JC team news: Bayern will be taking 15 and unfortunately will be missing out on the likes of Josh Levy, Guv Nussbaum and a few more.
Venue – Tempsford Green, Ref – Neal Cohen, KO – 10am
JC star man: Jake Dayan (Bayern)
DC Prediction: Hertswood 1 Bayern 4
MILL HILL DONS vs CATFORD & BROMLEY MACCABI
Catford & Bromley brushed aside the challenge of Faithfold with minimal fuss last weekend. But it wasn’t until Alex Jacobs came on to their pitch their superiority really told.
Jamie Sinai looked like a different player with Jacobs supplying some delicious passes to a player I’m tipping to score double figures this season.
Gotch expects a much tougher 90 minutes against the Dons. “We have a big game this week against another team two for two in league,” he told JC Sport.
“Obviously the whole Arsenal 12 o'clock kick-off means certain players will be at the Emirates but I have a gold squad of 15 and we're all looking forward it.
“We know we are capable so for me nothing less than three points will do.”
Mill Hill were blown away by the quality of Adam Ellis in the cup last weekend. Manager Brandon Hamme gave an honest assessment after the game, admitting they “didn’t do enough”.
Dons boss Brandon Hamme told JC Sport: "After last week's disappointing performance in the cup, we are desperate to bounce back with a win this weekend.
"We have had a very solid start to the season in the league and we will look to continue that with three points this week.
"We must make sure that last week's performance was just blimp and not a trend for what is to come.
"We know we are not in for an easy game this weekend, they gave us a good game in both times we faced them last season. I am positive that the boys will put in a good performance which hopefully will be enough to get all three points."
Much depends on the key battle between Gotch and ace Dons defender Josh Cinna. Don’t be surprised if it finish honours even.
Venue – Aycliffe Road, Ref – Barry David, KO – 9.45
JC star man: Oli Burchell (Dons)
DC Prediction: Dons 2 Catford 2
STRAW HAT PIRATES vs NORTH LONDON RAIDERS C
“After fasting on Saturday we hope to be feasting in goals on Sunday”. Those were the words of Raiders boss Sam Rose ahead of the trip to the Pirates.
Yet to concede in the league, their hopes of League Cup glory are over for another season, despite the best efforts of Jonny Blain.
Raiders looked much more comfortable once Rose switched to a 3-5-2 formation and it wouldn’t surprise me if that’s how they start in Borehamwood.
“We learnt a lot from last week’s game against Redbridge despite the scoreline which I think will stand us in good stead over the course of the season – but we want to maintain our league form and are hoping for a positive result against Straw Hat.
The Pirates gave an excellent account of themselves against Premier Division Camden Park. Boss Elliot Cukier was proud of the fact they didn’t collapse after conceding two early wonder goals.
Striker Aron Gale certainly rose to the challenge and it’s important the Pirates give him the service his work-rate deserves.
But Raiders know each other inside out and I can see them coming away with maximum points.
JC team news: Liam Stein returns after a trip to the continent last weekend with familiar faces keeping their places in the Raiders fold.
Venue – Meadow Park, Ref - , KO – 10am
JC star man: Dan Lovat (NLR)
DC Prediction: SHP 1 NLR 3