Ryman North: Romford ready to spoil Brightlingsea Regent’s title party

PUBLISHED: 15:00 07 April 2017

Callum Chafer saved two penalties for Romford last weekend (pic Mick Kearns/TGS Photo)

Callum Chafer saved two penalties for Romford last weekend (pic Mick Kearns/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Boro boss Paul Martin does not want Regent celebrating title by beating his team

Romford manager Paul Martin says he is only too happy to spoil the title party for Brightlingsea Regent in the Ryman North this weekend.

Boro make the trip to Regent tomorrow (Saturday), with the hosts able to secure the title should they better Maldon & Tiptree’s result at home to Dereham Town.

Martin is full aware it will be a difficult game against a team who have only lost once at home in 2017, but insists Romford are more than ready to make Brightlingsea wait to be crowned champions.

“I’m not being disrespectful to Brightlingsea, but I don’t want them to win the title by beating Romford,” said Martin.

“It’s one of those games that will depend on who turns up for both teams as they can’t be complacent because we have nothing to lose.

“We have to try and keep the momentum going until the end of the season and we are still looking to finish in the top half.

“It’s a game that Brightlingsea have to win, and if they do, then maybe when we face Maldon or Thurrock, they’re resting players for the play-offs.”

Martin will also hope goalkeeper Callum Chafer is in top form once again on Saturday after saving two penalties last weekend, though Boro did lose 2-1 at Tilbury.

Romford’s Greg Akpele had cancelled out an early opener from Emiel Aiken, before Michael Salako scored in the 89th minute to consign the visitors to a first loss in six.

Despite the result, Martin was still happy to praise Chafer following his heroics in saving two spot-kicks.

“Callum has been fantastic all season for us in goal and in saving the two penalties, he was again,” he added.

“I suppose it is the goalkeeper’s job to keep the ball out of the net!

“In all seriousness, though, he had very little to do other than the two penalty saves and picking the ball out of the net twice against Tilbury.”

Defeat at Tilbury saw an end to a five-game unbeaten run in the league that had given Romford hope of a

top-half finish this season.

Prior to Saturday’s defeat, Boro had taken 13 points from a possible 15 to establish themselves as one of the form sides in the league.

But Martin admits he was left scratching his head after the loss, believing the Ship Lane club had played one of their best games in recent weeks, but had nothing to show for it after another loss at bogey ground Chadfields.

“It was probably one of the better games over our recent run of good form, but it’s ended in a defeat so it is a strange one, but that’s football,” he said.

“Two good crosses have undone us, and I thought there were a couple of harsh decisions for the penalties which didn’t help, but at least Callum kept them out.

“We were improving in the game and I felt we had it in us to go on and win. I can’t grumble, though, we’ve had a few late goals ourselves in recent weeks.”

n Honours finished even in the Essex Olympian League Premier Division derby between Harold Hill and Harold Wood Athletic.

Reiss Kingsley scored for Essex Premier Cup runners-up Wood, while Seye Okunloca was on target for Hill, but then missed a late penalty for the relegation-threatened hosts.

Hill visit Leigh Ramblers this weekend, while Wood travel to White Ensign.

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