Goals from Dwade James, Callum Ibe, Emiel Aiken and Lewis Francis gave Walthamstow a comfortable 7-0 win over Southend Manor. It was dominant performance from Stow as they got their second 7-0 of the season and moved up to 2nd, closing the gap on Hashtag United to a single point.
It was a quick start from Walthamstow and they were ahead after just 3 minutes. Dwade James miscued his shot before Callum Ibe smashed home the loose ball. The goal gave the home side confidence going forward as they looked for a second. Callum Ibe fired a shot over after a pin-ball of headers before Dwade and Ibe were denied by Josh Harrison.
Their was a penalty shout for Walthamstow but all shouts were waved away. A minute later, Dwade James scored his first of the day when he fired a rebound shot into the far corner. The pressure continued from Stow but they couldn’t increase their lead. A number of headers were just over before Steven Carvell could only fire over the bar.
Walthamstow scored 3 goals in 4 minutes as the game reached the half-hour mark. Dwade James scored his second of the game when he wrestled past 2 defenders and slotted it past the keeper before completing his hattrick after firing it past the keeper from a tight angle. It was two minutes before Emiel Aiken joined in on the scoring and getting only his second of the season. A pull back from Stow’s hattrick hero allowed Aiken to smash it into the net.
Southend Manor hardly tested James Bransgrove and all attacks were smothered before being cleared. Despite a couple of chances for Stow and Billy Jones guiding the ball just wide, the teams went into the break with Stow leading 5-0.
The second half began no different to the first and it was the home side who started off the quickest. Callum Ibe tried to play in Dwade James but the ball was cleared before a shot from Jack Folan was caught on the line by Manor’s keeper.
A rare attack from the visitors saw a shot deflected over before Stow wondered how they hadn’t further when Steven Carvell’s shot was blocked off the line.
As the half went on, Emiel Aiken got his second of the afternoon as he curled the ball into goal from the edge of the box. Charlie Yexley was denied with a fantastic save from Josh Harrison before Lewis Francis got his second Stow goal in 3 games as he scored from a tight angle to give Stow a 7-0 lead with 8 minutes to go. Despite pressure from Stow into added time, the referee brought the game to an end.
Speaking after the game, Stow manager Ryan Maxwell said “Obviously, today was all about reaction. I think the training session on Thursday already told me how this game was going to pan out. We were disappointed with Tuesday’s result and as I said before, I’ll take some responsibility for tinkering with the team, but despite that, we still didn’t deserve to lose. We needed a reaction and some of the football we played on that horrendous pitch was exceptional.”
[When asked about the importance of having a range of scorers] “It’s massive and there’s no pressure on one individual. I’ve always wanted to take the burden off Dwade and we have a few players in this team that can find the back of the net. Callum is a super attacking player but then you’ve got Emiel who played in midfield and scored 2. It’s a huge bonus when the whole team scores and not just one player.”
[When asked about the midweek cup game] “We will analyse the squad and see who’s fit and who will feature. We will rotate as a few players have played a lot of games and many have some knocks but it is a game of football we will want to win no matter who we are playing.”