On a very chilly and dank November midweek evening, I decided to come for my second visit to the home of Snodland Town to see them play Chatham Town in the Southern Counties East Football League Challenge Cup (2nd round) tie.
Snodland Town play in the SCEFL Division 1, a league below Chatham Town who are one of the big three in the Premier League, along with Sheppey United and Glebe FC.
Snodland Town’s top scorer this season is the prolific Lee Friend with 13 goals from 11 league games. Snodland have made a positive start to the season, sitting in seventh place, in this highly competitive league. Chatham Town’s top scorer, Dan Bradshaw, has plundered 19 goals in just 15 games, which has in no small part contributed to his side standing in third place in the league. Neither Bradshaw nor Friend would play tonight.
The Potyns Field Ground has been significantly improved since my last visit over a year ago. It now boasts a modern clubhouse extension to the main stand. The clubhouse has a bar and refreshment stand. There is also decent floodlighting.
Snodland Town were playing in Blue and Yellow shirts and blue shorts. Chatham Town took to the pitch in red shirts and white shorts. A decent crowd of 207 had braved the cold tonight.
On 22 minutes Tom Smith put Chatham Town 0-1 up with a headed goal from a Jack Evans’ cross.
On 24 minutes Rhys Bartlett hit the ball home clinically to extend Chatham’s lead and make it 0-2.
On 31 minutes Ed Rosetti pulled one back for Snodland Town, to make it 1-2 and give the home fans some hope.
On 36 minutes, the game was extensively delayed, after an injury to Chatham Town’s Tom Smith. After the restart, the teams took a more cautious approach, and the score stayed 1-2 at the break.
Within two minutes of the restart, Chatham Town went 1-3 up when Jude Watts scored after a Matt Bodkin cross.
On 65 minutes, Snodland had a chance from a header which hit the bar and could easily have crossed the line. Snodland didn’t stop trying to score again and created a series of chances, while Chatham too looked to add to their own tally.
On 84 minutes Ike Orji made it 1-4, taking the game away from Snodland and effectively closing the game off.
As the final whistle blew, the crowd applauded what had been an entertaining cup tie.