JC MSFL PREMIER DIVISION TITLE DECIDER
HENDON UNITED SPORTS CLUB A 0 REDBRIDGE JEWISH CARE A 1
Dean Nyman scored with 10 minutes remaining to clinch the first Premier Division title success in their history for Redbridge Jewish Care.
The goal sparked wild celebrations, as the visitors saw out the win against their nearest rivals, who endured a frustrating day after missing some superb opportunities.
It was a scrappy first half, with the tension palpable, but it was the home team, who needed to win their last three games to have any hope of winning the league, who exerted most of the pressure.
Greg Corin had a cross which almost looped under the crossbar and required a smart save from Dan Lee.
In a half of few chances, Hendon were unlucky not to go ahead when a free kick was headed onto his own bar and over by Adam Hakimi as the pressure threatened to tell, and Alex Rosenthal should have put them in front from a Corin corner but he headed agonisingly wide from point blank range.
Redbridge started to get the ball on the ground more often in the second period, and almost went in front when Nyman’s shot from close range was blocked and Sam McCarthy’s rebound volley flew over.
Hendon pushed men forward in search of a crucial goal, opening the game up, and they were almost rewarded when Dovid Korman had a sight of goal but could only half volley straight at Lee.
For Redbridge, Darren Bern began to come into the game and threaten down the left, and his wing play was creating space in the centre to exploit, which Nyman almost did when his snapshot from outside the area was saved.
Korman had another header saved for Hendon and then Redbridge had a succession of chances to go in front. First, Steve Summers let fly from range, before Ben Sollosi had two glorious opportunities, first firing at the goalkeeper from inside the area following a corner, and then firing wide when clean through on goal.
Hendon still looked threatening, and they then had two great chances of their own, Ari Last having a header brilliantly tipped over by Lee, who had a superb game for Redbridge, and then Josh Lipman’s effort was also tipped over.
Lee’s saves proved decisive when the leaders finally went in front, as Adam Stolerman’s through ball found Nyman, who rounded Russell Corin in the Hendon goal to fire home and spark jubilant celebrations.
Jubilant Redbridge manager Sam McCarthy told JC Sport: "It’s great to get the victory and we’ve never won the title before so it’s great for Redbridge Jewish Care.
"It is never going to be an easy game against Hendon. They are always going to have a height advantage. The first half was tense and we did not get the ball down enough.
"It’s great to get the psychological advantage ahead of the Cyril Anekstein Cup final.”
For Hendon, the game was up, and with it the title. They will rue missed chances in a game they arguably edged. At least for manager David Garbacz there is a battle to come in the Cyril Anekstein Cup final, which will be contested by these sides on April 17, presenting an opportunity for immediate revenge for a defeat he felt was harsh.
Hendon manager David Garbacz told JC Sport: "We know Redbridge are not unbeatable, they are strong but we’re the better team and know we are.
"We dominated the first half and we played really well today. It was when we opened up looking for the winner late on that we left space and that was how their goal came.”
The teams meet again in the JC Cyril Anekstein Cup final on April 17.
Hendon: Russell Corin, Martin Smulovich, Alex Rosenthal (sub: Alex Gilbert), Josh Lipman, Paul Bentley, Rafi Kon, Ben Kon, Josh Bentley (sub: Saul Conway), Dovid Korman (sub: Avi Korman), Ari Last, Greg Corin
Redbridge: Dan Lee, Craig Sandford, Joel Berg, Richie Caplin, Daran Bern, Ben Sollosi (sub: Mitch Lassman), Danny Hakimi, Sam McCarthy, Dean Nyman, Steve Summers (sub: Stolerman), Adam Hakimi
Goal: Nyman 81