It was a warm June evening for this post-lockdown tournament fixture between Chatham Town FC (red shirts and white shorts) and Lordswood FC (sky blue shirts and shorts). There was a decent crowd in when I arrived 25 minutes prior to the 7.45 pm kick off.
The mini tournament has been really popular, and the attendance for this fixture was still high, despite the France v Germany Euro Championship fixture being live on TV. Lordswood FC, are something of a local rival to Chatham, and both sides, usually, ply their trades in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division.
Both sides started attacking confidently. On 16 minutes Lordswood appeared to take the lead with a nicely finished goal only for it to be cancelled out for a handball decision, seen by the assistant referee and flagged quite late.
Chatham seemed to spur themselves on immediately from this and two minutes later the ball was put in from the right for Strouts to slot home to make it 1-0 and send the crowd behind the goal wild.
The game then became end to end, with Chatham having the better chances. Tackles flew in and both sides seems to forget this match wouldn’t affect the finalists and played with all the pride and passion you’d expect in a local derby game.
On 43 minutes Chatham pressure paid off and Evans finished for the second goal to make it 2-0.
The second half continued to be a battle with both sides pushing for more goals and tackles flying in with energy and aggression.
Chatham had some good chances, but fortune and strong defending kept them from breaching the Lordswood goal.
Just when it seemed as if the game had no more goals in it and, with the match in the 87th minute, Chatham pushed forward and with a headed finish from Pilbeam, made it 3-0.
Chatham continued to pressure the Lordswood defence until the 90th minute. at the final whistle the ground emptied with fans knowing the next time Chatham played, it would be in the final of the tournament, next Thursday. Although the result was 3-0 the match was closely fought, and Lordswood really competed throughout.