JC MSFL Div 4: East London Knights 6 Pinner JFC 2
Another terrific display by the Knights crowned off a thumping victory at Wanstead Flats this morning.
Although things didn't start to brightly for the Knights after two minutes into Simon Marks's debut it was cut short by a hamstring strain when he over-stretched for a ball played in the air forcing the home side into a change.
After a gutsy performance from Pinner last weekend against Woodford Wanderers gave them plenty of confidence going into this encounter, and things went from bad to worst for the reds early on as they wasted no time in taking the lead. A great delivery from the left hand side fell dangerously in the 6 yard box and the Knight's centre back Marc Pollack failed to clear and turned the ball into his own net.
This quickly sparked the home side into life and moments later James Ryan found him self free in space on the right flank, delivering a sweet pass into Grant Stone. He shot early but the keeper failed to hold onto the first shot leaving Stone to bundle in the rebound at the second attempt.
East London Knights gained a real foothold on the game now and Pinner were struggling to combat the Knights constant attacks.
Josh Danan, who deservedly won MOTM was a real thorne in their side, gaining the height advantage he was winning every header from throw in's to corners. Josh's counterpart Matt West hit top form today, spreading delicious passes from left to right controlling the midfield. Dave Sidloff set Michael Marks off down the left hand side yet again and he crossed a curling ball into the path of Steve Clements who had his shot saved well and looped up into the path of Ryan who's spectacular diving header put the Knights in front.
On the half hour mark the Knights stretched their lead to 3-1, Pinner failed to clear a throw in from David Sidloff which was nodded backwards by Josh Danan and fell at the feet of captain Justin Bell and struck a delightful right footed shot low and hard into the bottom right-hand corner, it was a finish any top striker would be proud of.
With the home side growing in confidence, Pinner found themselves second best to almost everything as the half time interval was closing in, but the Knights weren't quite finished with them yet, Ryan was played in down the right-hand side running a total of 50 yards and his bursting pace beat his full back with ease and delivered a low cross into the six-yard box where Michael Marks was lurking to tap into the empty net after the goalkeeper let the ball slip under his body.
A pretty easy half time team talk for the reds, just more of the same please was the words of manager Ryan.
On the hour mark West dashed any hopes and dreams of a come back for Pinner after scoring one of the goals of the game. He got on the end of a good move and beat three players on a mazy run with close skill and control inside the box and despatched a wonderful shot with the outside of his right foot.
Pinner had several chances to pull another goal back, a looping shot clattering the crossbar denied them in the road to recovery.
Michael Marks delivered the final nail in the coffin, Matt West receiving a pass from Danan and played a looping pass into the path of the left winger and he lobbed the onrushing keeper with aplomb.
Pinner had the final say in the matter, grabbing themselves one final consolation the Knights were caught a little cold and the forward beat the offside trap and lashed a stunning right footed shot into the top corner.
ELK player-manager James Ryan said: "The performance today was 100 times better than last week, although I still believe there is room for improvement and seeing as we had half a team missing it just shows the strength we have in our squad.
"We played some great football for majority of the game and with players still to come back I have no doubt that this team will get stronger and stronger as the games go on."