Needham Market are beaten at home by impressive Enfield Town side

Needham pull a goal back against Enfield.

Needham pull a goal back against Enfield. - Credit: Archant

Third-placed Needham Market were looking to strengthen their position in the Ryman Premier Division, and maintain their challenge for promotion.

Needham's Luke Ingram fires in a shot against the Enfield defence.

Needham's Luke Ingram fires in a shot against the Enfield defence. - Credit: Archant

However, a poor performance from Mark Morsley’s side against a capable Enfield Town team, saw them leave Bloomfields empty-handed.

The Marketmen went behind in the first minute when a Karl Oliyide cross appeared to be covered by goalkeeper Danny Gay, but took a deflection off Keiran Morphew and wrong-footed the stopper.

In front of a crowd of 326 spectators, Luke Ingram responded, testing Nathan McDonald in the visitors’ goal, but Enfield looked an accomplished side, playing expansive football and testing the home defence with crosses.

The visitors’ second goal came in the 13th minute when a cross from Jonathan Muleba picked out the unmarked Harold Joseph who headed beyond Gay.

Enfield continued to impress and Morsley’s side were having a torrid time, struggling with their passing game and giving isolated striker John Sands little support to penetrate.

Enfield extended their lead in the 29th minute when Billy Crook threaded a fine ball into the path of Samir Bihmoutine whose first attempt was partially saved by Gay. However, Bihmoutine followed up to prod home the loose ball.

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Needham lacked composure and were generally being outplayed, Gay having to save from Mickey Parcell at his near post.

After the break, Oliyide struck a powerful effort that Needham’s goalkeeper saved superbly, before Morsley rang the changes on 56 minutes, introducing joint-top scorer Reece Dobson, Joe Whight and Will Crissell.

Needham had a glimmer of hope in the 63rd minute when a corner from the left was tapped home by skipper Ian Miller.

Then, Cameron Norman’s free kick was headed against the woodwork by Sands and Dobson sent a shot straight at former Braintree Town man, McDonald.

Enfield recovered after this and, with the impressive Mark Kirby and Joseph at the heart of the visiting defence, they took firm control.

Whilst Needham were below par the visitors were excellent and good value for their win.

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