top of page


Southend United 2 Dorking Wanderers 0

Vanarama National League

November 12th 2022

Dorking were defeated by an in-form Southend United side who extended their unbeaten league run to 11 games with victory at Roots Hall, Wanderers by contrast are now without a win in their last four league games.

Shrimpers man of the match Jack Bridge opened the scoring by driving home a spot kick inside ten minutes after Barry Fuller brought down Wesley Fonguck, and the hosts doubled their advantage just past the half-hour courtesy of defender Shaun Hobson's header from a corner ball. Despite changing shape in the second half, Wanderers couldn't find a response as the best defence in the league shut out any real threat and retained an impressive eighth clean sheet in ten games.

Marc White stuck with the 4-5-1 formation he deployed in midweek against Torquay but was forced into changes as Josh Taylor and Nicky Wheeler were ruled out through injury, and James McShane was a late withdrawal from the matchday squad due to his partner going into labour.

Captain Barry Fuller did return to the starting eleven having been ruled out with a groin injury for the past few weeks. Subsequently Dan Gallagher would move into the middle of the defence to partner Joe Cook, with Archie Procter coming into the left back position to make his first start in a Wanderers shirt. Sami El-Abd would drop to the bench, and Bobby-Joe Taylor would move up to play wide left, as Luke Moore and Jack Jebb came into central midfield. Slav Huk also returned to the side to replace Dan Lincoln in goal.

Ahead of Remembrance Sunday, a rendition of 'The Last Post' and a minute's silence was perfectly observed before kick off.

The game was yet to settle down as play was hastily contested back and forth in central midfield in the early exchanges, but on 9 minutes, with their first real venture forward, the hosts managed to open the scoring. Wing back Jack Bridge looked to play a one-two with Wesley Fonguck inside the attacking left channel, and upon entering the box with an overlapping run, the former Barnet midfielder Fonguck was brought down by Fuller, penalty awarded. Bridge put the ball on the spot, and despite Huk getting a hand to it, managed to drive the ball into the bottom left corner.

As the game continued to be fought out predominantly in central midfield, Southend were proving effective in their high press, the industrious Shrimpers top scorer Callum Powell forcing Huk into a couple of nervy moments in the six yard box as he looked to play out, and Kevin Maher's team were getting joy down the left through the lively Bridge with Foguck and striker Chris Wreh often dropping in to create an overload. Clear cut chances were not forthcoming though, with defender Ollie Kensdale's strike from range the closest effort on goal as it whistled narrowly wide of the post.

Just past the half-hour mark though, the hosts did manage to double their advantage. A corner ball from the right was nodded home by Shaun Hobson up from the back, fashioning a good contact to plant his header beyond Huk and into the top right corner.

The second goal seemed to spur Wanderers into action, having not really got out of midfield for the majority of the game up to this point they began to cause the organised Southend rear guard some issues in the latter stages of the half. McManus had a shot go wide after cutting in from the left and Procter would stride forward and take on a shot from distance, the rising effort just narrowly averting the crossbar. Patient play down the right involving McManus and Fuller led to Jebb then curling an effort from just outside the box which would cannon off the inside of the post, Seager unfortunate not to get to the rebound.

Harry Ottaway was introduced five minutes before the break in place of Bobby-Joe Taylor as Marc White looked to give Wanderers more presence up top, and the striker nearly scored with his first touch, stabbing Muitt's low cross just wide from several yards out.

Half-Time: Southend United 2-0 Dorking Wanderers

The home side took back control of the game after the restart, and again whilst not creating anything too clear cut, continued to cause problems from out wide as Moore had to make a block on the left side of the box and both Procter and Ottaway made vital headed clearances inside the six yard box.

With just under half-hour to go, Marc White reverted Wanderers back to their recognised 3-5-2 formation with Isaac Philpot and Alfie Egan coming on to replace Barry Fuller and Archie Procter. McManus would take up position on the left side of midfield, as Cook moved across to the right of the back three.

In their familiar shape Wanderers took a stronger hold of possession and got forward more often inside the closing twenty minutes, but the strong defensive trio of Hobson, Lopata and Kensdale were largely untroubled and in the main showed why they were part of a side which had let in just 13 goals so far this season. Moore had a shot closed down at the edge of the box and like Procter in the first half, Cook would make a run forward from the back and unleash an effort from range, this time trying a curler which would go wide.

Kevin Maher freshened things up top with the introductions of Aaron Cosgrave and Harry Cardwell late on, and it was not long before Huk was brought into action twice in the space of a minute. Cosgrave slid in wing back Gus Scott-Morris to fire an effort just inside the box which Huk beat away emphatically, before then denying Cardwell in similar fashion after as he darted in from the left channel. Philpot would then produce an excellent sliding challenge to prevent Cosgrave getting a shot off, and Wanderers would go very close to halving the deficit at the end of regulation time, Seager and Moore combining before a cross found McManus on the far side of the box, his angled strike was blocked just in front of the goal line.

Ultimately Southend held out to make it a fifth win in six league games, demonstrating to Wanderers today why they have been on such a good run with a very well balanced, organised side. The Shrimpers remain in 5th spot whilst Wanderers slip down to 15th having picked up just one win now in the last seven league matches. Marc White will be looking at the next week to hopefully get a few more bodies back from injury ahead of a return to home soil next Saturday as Bromley visit Meadowbank in a 3pm kick off.

Dan Stobbart

Southend United (3-5-2): 30 Colin Andeng Ndi, 5 Shaun Hobson, 22 Kacper Lopata, 6 Ollie Kensdale; 2 Gus Scott-Morris, 16 Harry Taylor, 17 Cavaghn Miley (c), 18 Wesley Fonguck (10 Dan Mooney 90'), 7 Jack Bridge; 11 Callum Powell (23 Harry Cardwell 72'), 19 Chris Wreh (20 Aaron Cosgrave 67')

Unused Subs: 4 Louis Lomas, 24 Jason Demetriou

Goals: Bridge 9' pen, Hobson 32'

Yellow Card: Lopata 34'

Dorking Wanderers (4-5-1): 1 Slav Huk, 22 Barry Fuller (2 Isaac Philpot 64'), 20 Dan Gallagher, 33 Joe Cook, 35 Archie Procter (29 Alfie Egan 64'); 7 Jimmy Muitt, 6 Niall McManus, 18 Luke Moore, 23 Jack Jebb, 3 Bobby-Joe Taylor (24 Harry Ottaway 40'); 9 Ryan Seager

Unused Subs: 4 Sami El-Abd, 12 Callum Kennedy

No Yellow Cards

Referee: Wayne Cartmel

Attendance: 6, 400 (140 Wanderers Fans)

Man Of The Match: Jack Bridge (Official Home Selection)

bottom of page