1st Team Match Reports – 2008-09

Colts finish in style

 Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5, Radlett Village 1

(Review Division 3)            10 May 2009

Division 3 champions Harpenden Colts Olds Boys finished the season in style with a comfortable 5-1 win against Radlett Village with Club Captain Chris Sheridan celebrating his 200th appearance for the club and a hat trick by top marksman James Warner taking his tally to 68 for the season with singles by Oliver Spicer and Chris Ellis. David Keenleyside was again outstanding for Colts providing 4 assists with full back Tom Dyball also in impressive form on the overlap.

Colts dominated from the start and they were rewarded after 5 minutes when a good passing movement saw David Keenleyside square the ball to midfielderChris Ellisto curl a goal into the top corner from 25 yards to take the lead. Two minutes later Colts were 2-0 up when a power driven corner from David Keenleyside saw Oliver Spicer get across his man on the near post to head home. Colts then created numerous chances only to find the Radlett keeper in tremendous form saving well from James Warner on 3 occasions and also denying both Oliver Spicer and David Keenleyside. The pressure finally told and Colts hit their third goal after 32 minutes when James Warner was on hand to fire in form close range following a cross from marauding full back Tom Dyball that the Radlett keeper failed to deal with.

The second half saw Colts ease off the pressure and Radlett start to get back into the game as the Colts gave the ball away frequently but normal service was resumed after 54 minutes when David Keenleyside was on hand to cross for James Warner to slot home to effectively end the game. More chances came and went with James Warner, David Keenleyside and Steven Easterbrook all having good chances but being denied by some great saves and some poor finishing. Radlett struck back to take advantage of being given the ball cheaply after 79 minutes to gain a consolation goal but James Warner was again on hand in injury time after being fed through by a great David Keenleyside through ball to round the keeper to notch his hat trick and his 244th career goal for Colts in 262 games. Michael Ross and Jack Cartwright were again pillars of dominance in central defence for Colts with stand in keeperColin Arnsbygiving a confident display.


Keenleyside shows the Road home

 Harpenden Colts Old Boys 7, London Road 0

(Review Division 3)            3 May 2009

Harpenden Colts Olds Boys top striker James Warner scored 4 goals against title rivals London Road “A” but it was fellow striker and Man of the Match David Keenleyside that ran the show for a full strength Colts side as he hit a brace with midfielder Stuart Brown adding a single as the Colts ran out 7-0 winners in a match that could well have decided the league title. KeeperCharlie Collinswas solid in the Colts goal with central defenders Michael Ross and Jack Cartwright outstanding at the back as was Chris Ellisholding the midfield.

In a game that was billed as a possible title decider both keepers were called upon to make great saves to keep their sides in the game  in the first 15 minutes but after Road keeper Nick Hasslett has made a number of good saves it was James Warner that broke the deadlock after 21 minutes when a scramble following a David Keenleyside free kick was swept in by James Warner after a Stuart Brown shot was blocked. Colts then stepped up a gear but they had to fight hard to retain the initiative and they were rewarded after 43 minute whenMarc Oakleywon a header and the ball was swept by Stuart Brown to James Warner who unleashed a great strike inside the far post to put the Colts 2-0 up. Warner then hit his hat trick in the 4th minute of injury time whenOliver Spicerput in a great cross form the left for Warner to ghost  in to fire home from close range.

The second half saw Colts finding time and space on the ball and James Warner made it 4 after 53 minutes when he rose to beat the keeper to anotherOliver Spicercross to head home to give Road a mountain to clime. Man of the Match David Keenleyside then made it mission impossible just a minute later when a Long Kick by keeperCharlie Collinswas deflected on by a Road defender for David Keenleyside to race on and lob the keeper to make it 5. Colts then continued to create chances and after 69 minutes Keenleyside was again on hand after referee Kevin Moore played a great advantage after midfielderChris Elliswas fouled and Stuart Brown slotted through a great ball to set David Keenleyside on his way to slot past the keeper to make it 6-0. Stuart Brown then capped a fine display a minute later when he latched onto a rebound from a Tom Dyball close down to fire home from 20 yards to put the game beyond doubt.



Kier Williams denies Colts double figures


RBL Harpenden 1, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 3

(Review Division 3)            26 April 2009


Harpenden Colts Old Boys dominated this game only to find Kier Williams in the RBL Harpenden goal in outstanding form throughout the game making a string of great saves. RBL took the lead against the run of play after 24 minutes but the Colts pressure finally proved too much as goals from James Warner, David Keenleyside and Jack Cartwright set up a 3 – 1 win for the Colts. David Keenleyside was outstanding for Colts.


For the second week running Colts dominated the early play but the combination of a number of outstanding saves and missed chances saw the colts with nothing to show for their efforts. James Warner, David Keenleyside and Stuart Brown all had good chances but were denied before Colts were caught on the break to go behind, against the run of play, after 24 minutes. Colts then found the ball in their own net again 2 minutes later but the goal was ruled out for a clear offside and this kick started the Colts up a gear. James Warner levelled after 29 minutes when put clear by David Keenleyside and 2 minutes later David Keenleyside latched onto a through ball byChris Ellisto put Colts ahead. More chances were then created but not taken as HARCOB took a 2-1 half time lead.


The second half was much the same as the first with the RBL keeper continuing to be in fine form and Colts continued to bombard the RBL goal with James Warner being also denied by the crossbar before  after 65 minutes Jack Cartwright rose to head aMarc Oakleycorner firmly into the net to finish any hope of an RBL fight back. The industrious David Keenleyside was outstanding for Colts with Michael Ross and Jack Cartwright looking solid in the colts defence.


Missed chances cost Colts


Blackberry Jack 3, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 1

(Intermediate Cup Final)  19 April 2009


Division 3 side Harpenden Colts Old Boys dominated much of the first half in the Review Intermediate Cup Final against division 2 league leaders Blackberry Jack but they only had a well taken first half goal by James Warner to show for their efforts despite creating and not taking a number of chances. A crucial defensive error just before half time put Blackberry Jack back in the game and then Colts got caught on the break after giving the ball away 20 minutes from time to see them chasing the rest of the game. A killer goal from a corner 5 minutes from time killed a spirited Colts fight back as they laid siege to the Blackberry goal.Dan Fensomeworked hard in the Colts midfield whilst Jack Cartwright gave another solid display at the back for Colts.


Colts took the game to Blackberry Jack right from the start and they dominated much of the early possession with stand in keeperColin Arnsbynot having a save to make for much of the game. The Blackberry keeper was called upon to make a smart save at the foot of the post from a lively James Warner and Colts had a number of other efforts blocked and saved. After 30 minutes HARCOB  made the breakthrough when a driving run byOliver Spicersaw James Warner slipped in to fire on the turn into the corner of the net to put them into a well deserved lead. Colts then seemed to relax and they failed to clear the ball around their ownbox6minutes from the break to give Blackberry Jack a lifeline back into a game that Harpenden Colts OB had been dominating.


The second half saw Blackberry attack the game with more urgency and HARCOB not producing the fine supporting play seem in the first half but they nevertheless produced a number of chances to get ahead but blocked shots and some desperate defending kept them at bay. With stand in keeperColin Arnsbystill rarely troubled HARCOB gave themselves a mountain to clime when they lost possession on the halfway line and got caught on the break for Blackberry to fire a well taken volley from a cross with 20 minutes left. HARCOB  then produced a flurry of chances to try to get back into the game but a headed goal from a corner 5 minutes from time effectively ended the contest.




6 of the best by Warner wins battle of marksmen


Duke of Marlborough 2, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 10

(Review Division 3)            12 April 2009


Five first half goals by Harpenden Colts Old Boys’ James Warner effectively ended this match by half time but despite rival marksman Dene Lewis getting 2 consolation goals for the Duke of Marlborough in the second half Warner added a single to complete his double hat-trick as Colts went on to complete the rout 10 – 2 supported by a brace by defender Jack Cartwright and singles by David Keenleyside and Tom Dyball who capped a fine display with 4 assists .


Colts were ahead after 9 minutes when a give and go sawMarc Oakleyclear to cross for James Warner to head home. Another give and go 2 minutes later between Daniel Fensome and Tom Dyball saw a fierce shot by Tom Dyball parried for Warner to tap in on the rebound. James Warner notch his first hat-trick after 17 minutes when a long route 1 ball by Michael Ross saw him put clear to round the keeper to score. Colts should have gone further ahead with chances falling to Daniel Fensome and Simon Beazley but James Warner made it 4 after 31 minutes when he was slipped in by Tom Dyball to dink the ball over the advancing keeper. Warner was then put clear by Simon Beazley after 38 minutes to make it 5-0 to Colts and himself at half time.


Colts had to reshuffle at the break as the unwellChris Newcombewas replaced after a comfortable first half keeping theMarlboroughstriker out of the game but Colts continued to dominate and went 6-0 up after 50 minutes when a half cleared corner fell to James Warner whose cross was attacked by defender Jack Cartwright to head home. Colts then feel asleep and were caught by a typicalMarlboroughgoal within a minute but they went 7-1 up after 67 minutes when James Warner was on hand to fire home a Tom Dyball pull back from close range. Colts were again guilty of switching off straight from the kick off to concede another almost identical Marlboroughconsolation goal but within 2 minutes they were further ahead when theMarlboroughkeeper fumbled a Tom Dyball corner and Jack Cartwright was first to the loose ball to make it 8-2. Another fumble from the keeper after 86 minutes from a Michael Ross shot saw David Keenleyside pounce on the follow up to make it 9 and 2 minutes from time Tom Dyball capped a fine display of 4 assists by latching on to a poor back pass to round the keeper to roll ingoal number 10 for Colts.


Colts puurrrr into Final


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 4, Oaklands 0

(Review Intermediate Cup Semi Final)          5 April 2009


Harpenden Colts Old Boys cruised into the final of the Review Intermediate Cup with a comprehensive 4-0 winning performance against Oaklands. A 2nd minute goal by James Warner from a greatMarc Oakleycross set the Colts on their way and a single by Tom Dyball together with a goal in each half from Simon Beazley put the game beyond reach of a hard working Oaklands side. Man of theChris Elliswas outstanding anchoring the Colts midfield with Steven Easterbrook looking solid when leading the line. 


Colts new cat mascot was positively purring after 2 minutes when Steven Easterbrook closed down the full back to win the ball and then feedMarc Oakleyto send in an un-defendable cross for James Warner to fire home form close range to set the Colts on their way. HARCOB continued to dominate the first 20 minutes and the Oaklands keeper had to pull off a great save from a James Warner header following anOliver Spicercross to keep the home side in the game. Colts then eased off the midfield pressure which gave the home side more of the game but then stepped up a gear and were rewarded when another superbOliver Spicercross saw Steven Easterbrook head onto the bar but midfielder Simon Beazley was first to the rebound to fire home to put the Colts into a comfortable 2-0 half time lead.


Colts continued to have much the better of the play in the second half but it was not until the 62nd minute that Colts were able to increase their lead when a cross by overlapping full backColin Arnsbysaw Simon Beazley dummy to fire home and opposite full back Tom Dyball bravely getting in where it hurts to poke home under pressure from 2 defenders to give Oaklands a mountain to climb. Central midfielderChris Ellisthen capped a fine display after 72 minutes when he split the defence with a through ball which saw Simon Beazley on a 3rd man run through the middle and defy the odds to slot past the advancing keeper to put the game beyond reach. Substitutes Simon Cooper andChris Sheridanthen made the game safe for Colts with solid defending when it was needed whilst stand in keeper Stuart Brown gave a faultless performance in the Colts goal. 



Warner hits half century


Nicholas Breakspear OB Reserves 0, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 4

(Review League Division 3)              29 March 2009


Harpenden Colts Old Boys bounced back from last weeks shock cup defeat with a well worked 4 – 0  win over Nicholas Breakspear OB Reserves as man of the Match James Warner hit a hat-trick taking his tally to 52 for the season and also provided the cross that was turned in by a defender before the  lurkingMarc Oakleycould execute the coup de gras.Chris Ellisand Daniel Fensome impressed for Colts in midfield with Jack Cartwright and Michael Ross anchoring a solid defensive display.


Colts went ahead after 3 minutes when good pressure play byMarc Oakleyforced a poor back pass from the NBOB defender and James Warner latched onto the ball to score past the stranded keeper to score his 50th goal of the season. Colts then dominated much of the possession but had to wait until the 24th minute for their second when good interplay withOliver Spicer  saw James Warner hit a great cross to the back post to force the NBOB defender into turning the ball into the net taking the ball off the foot of the lurkingMarc Oakley. Stand in keeperColin Arnsbywas forced to pull off a great save  from NBOB’s only real attempt on goal before another tremendous cross fromMarc Oakley, this time from a corner, saw James Warner rise to head home after 32 minutes to give Colts a comfortable 3 – 0 cushion going into half time.


The second half saw Colts cruising and they might have pulled further ahead when a great cross by substituteChris Sheridansaw Simon Beazley in space for a free header but the ball just went over the bar. Further chances were created with the industry ofChris Ellis, Daniel Fensome and Tom Dyball with the maraudingChris Newcombealways a threat when getting forward on the overlap. NBOB had a good chance when a indirect free kick was awarded near the Colts penalty spot but the team photo line up on the goal line did its job. It was not until 3 minutes from time when a set piece byOliver Spicersaw James Warner rise in the box to head home his hat-trick and Colts 4th goal to seal the match and another clean sheet underpinned by a solid performance from Michael Ross and Jack Cartwright in central defence.



Colts pay the penalty


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 1, Oaks Reserves 1

(Oaks Reserves win 4-3 on penalties)

(Junior Cup SF)  22 March 2009


A much changed and improved Oaks Reserves gained revenge for their earlier 8-1 County Cup defeat by beating Harpenden Colts Old Boys 4-3 in a Review Junior Cup semi-final penalty shoot out after the scores were level at 1-1 at the end of extra time.  Oaks took the lead after 5 minutes from long range after colts failed to clear their lines butOliver Spicerpulled the goal back for the colts bundling in a greatMarc Oakleycross to score his 100th goal for the club. Colts stand in keeper Stuart Brown capped a fine display by saving 3 of the penalties in the deciding shoot out but four missed penalties cost Colts dear making it an unhappy 200th appearance for midfielder Daniel Fensome.


Playing at “home” on an unfamiliar and bumpy Harpenden Rovers pitch HARCOB couldn’t get their normal passing game going and they paid the price for not attacking the ball after 5 minutes when a long range drive went through a crowded penalty area to put Oaks in the lead. Colts equalised after 10 minutes when a give and go betweenMarc Oakleyand James Warner saw a greatMarc Oakleycross bundled in on the far post byOliver Spicerfor his 100th goal for the club. Stepping up a gear the Colts then created but did not convert numerous chances with stand in keeper Stuart Brown rarely troubled in the Colts goal.


The second half saw Colts playing some improved football without taking the chances on offer whilst once again keeper Stuart Brown was rarely troubled. Extra time saw both sides hit the woodwork with Oaks creating a couple of good chances near the close as the Colts pressed to win the game. The penalty shoot out saw Stuart Brown making some great saves after Colts regular penalty takers hit poor penalties to give Oaks the advantage. The Colts could have won the game in sudden death the end of the first round of penalties after Oaks had missed their 6th penalty but the miss kept Oaks alive to take the advantage and then win as Colts missed their seventh attempt.



Jack trumps Kings


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5, King Harry 2

(Review Intermediate Cup QF)        15 March 2009


Three late cry offs saw Harpenden Colts Old Boys struggle to field a full side for this Intermediate Cup quarter final match against division 4 favourites King Harry but Man of the Match defender Jack Cartwright capped a solid performance in defence by scoring the opener in a game that Colts were always in front eventually running out 5 – 2 winners with a second half hat – trick by James Warner and a superb solo strike byMarc Oakley. Full backChris Newcombeimpressed against a lively King Harry wing whilstChris Ellisworked hard in midfield.


Late cry offs saw managerSteve Oakleyas the sole available substitute for most of this match after Jamie Mangan was forced to exit with hamstring problems in the opening minutes after being put clean though on a one on one and James Warner also went close before after 14 minutes James Warner flicked on anOliver Spicercorner for defender Jack Cartwright to head home for the opener. The Colts offside trap then got sprung a minute later in a close call to see the visitors equalise but they were rarely troubled for the remainder of the first half whilst being let down by the final ball  and unable to pull clear.


The second half saw Colts respond to a lively half time team talk and after 2 minutes a great cross byOliver Spicerfound James Warner lurking in the box to force home from close range.  The Colts increased their lead after 50 minutes when James Warner was again first to the ball to aMarc Oakleycross to force home from close range. Colts went to sleep on a free kick to give away a soft goal to let King Harry back into the game after 59 minutes but they went further ahead after 77 minutes with a superb solo strike from outside the box byMarc Oakleywas too hot to handle and squeezed inside the far post. A free kick byOliver Spicerin the last minute sealed it for Harpenden Colts when James Warner was first to the rebound off the post to force home from close range as Colts ran out deserved winners to meet Oaklands in the semi final. Michael Ross was Mr. Commitment in the Colts defence with Jack Cartwright an assured presence.Chris Newcombewas superb in dealing with the KH winger in the second half.


Trouble at’ Mill


Cottonmill Warriors 0, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 8

(Review League Division 3)              8 March 2009


Harpenden Colts seemed to find trouble in getting going in this match against bottom side Cottonmill Warriors and playing the first half uphill against the wind despite creating a host of chances only had a Warner goal to show for their efforts. The second half saw a better performance as Colts cruised to an 8—0 victory with a second half hat-trick from James Warner together with a brace by Jamie Mangan, and singles by debutant David Keenleyside and a superb solo effort byChris Newcombe.Oliver Spicerwas outstanding for Colts in the second half with 3 assists whilst Jack Cartwright also impressed on his debut.


HARCOB just couldn’t seem to get the ball down or get the ball wide in the first half and whilst they created a number of chances clearances of the line and good saves by the home keeper kept them at bay for the first half hour before James Warner was on hand to turn in a fineChris Newcombecross on 31 minutes to start to save the Colts blushes.


A crisp team talk at half time and the advantage of playing downhill with the wind saw Colts go further ahead 2 minutes after the break whenChris Newcombegained possession inside the box and curled the bal high inside the far post to set Colts on their way. A poor clearance on 58 minutes gifted Colts a third goal which James Warner duly despatched and debutant David Keenleyside set up James Warner for his hat-trick just a minute later and Warner then returned the complement after 65 minutes playing a neat give and go to put Keenleyside clear to slot home. The last 15 minutes saw a virtuoso performance by Ollie Spicer who stood in goal for the first half. A Spicer cross after 77 minutes saw Warner head home his 4th goal and two minutes later a superb diving header by substitute Jamie Mangan converted another Spicer cross into a goal. Another Spicer cross after 88 minutes saw a scramble that Jamie Mangan was first to the loose ball to force it over the line to make it 8 – 0 for the Colts in a game that saw managerSteve Oakleylead the line in the final stages after coming on as substitute


Warner rampant as Colts come of age


Sandridge & Harvesters 0,

Harpenden Colts Old Boys 21 (twenty-one)

(Review League Division 3)              1 March 2009


Harpenden Colts bounced back from last weeks shock County Cup defeat with a comprehensive 21 – 0 demolition of Sandridge & Harvesters with man of the match James Warner leading the rout with 8 goals supported by a hat trick byOliver Spicer, braces fromChris Newcombe, Tom Dyball and Steven Easterbrook and singles fromChris Ellis, Michael Ross andChris Sheridanwith an own goal completing a miserable day for the home side. James O’Brien was outstanding for Colts as was debutant Jack Rich. Not so much a match report byChris Ellis; more like a commentary on the fall of wickets:


1-0           Easterbrook – corner comes in, over runs, boxer shoots across goal from tight angle, Steve                 slots in
2-0           Warner – Spicer takes goal kick, runs straight through to Warner, slots away with ease
3-0           Jamie slid Warner down wing, crosses in to back post and Steve scores with a Klinsman-nesque diving header
4-0           Warner – Jamie wins ball off defender, slides in Warner who slots past keeper
5-0           Jack Rich slides Dyball down wing who cuts inside full back and scores too easily at near post.
6-0           (whose?) corner comes in, goal mouth scramble, Jimmy bundles it in
7-0           Job wins ball off defender and crosses in Jimmy to volley it in from close range
8-0           Michael Ross takes a free kick which goes over their centre back, Jimmy gets ahead of his defender to round keeper and score
9-0           Jack Rich slides Olly down wing who dribbles to edge of box and rifles it with his left foot in to far post
10-0         Ellis wins ball in midfield and slides Olly in on goal who slots past goalie
11-0         Dyball swings in corner, keeper drops and Sherry is poaching and scores
12-0         Jimmy beats 3 players with a series of drag backs in box, gets brought down, Michael Ross               steals the ball to take penalty and slots in bottom corner
13-0         (whose?) corner comes in to back post, Chris Ellis volley’s it straight in to far corner
14-0         Sherry clears ball which their keeper decided not to come and collect, hesitation allows       Jimmy to get there ahead of goalie and score
15-0         Olly accelerates down wing just inside box, gets clipped. Boxer slots in penalty
16-0         Olly skins his full back and from edge of box rifles in to bottom corner
17-0         Olly whips cross in, defender is forced to head in to own net with Jimmy lurking
18-0         Jimmy goes on solo run, plays a 1-2 with Dyball and volleys from edge of box in to top corner
19-0         Dyball dribbles in from right hand side, no-one closes him down. decides to shoot from 25                 yards, screams in to top corner
20-0         Boxer dribbles out from back, dribbles past 3 players, shoots from edge of box, hits the       post and goes in, we celebrate this goal the most!
21-0         Olly takes corner and Jimmy runs in near post and heads in at near post.



Colts crash to late goals

Harpenden Colts Old Boys 2, Northaw 3 – aet

(Herts Junior County Cup Quarter Final)     8 February 2009


A below strength and depleted Harpenden Colts Old Boys were still strong enough to expect to win this Herts County Junior Cup quarter final and should have done so after leading twice throughChris Ellisand James Warner who was making his 250th appearance for the club but poor defending from set plays and a number of missed chances wrecked their run of 16 straight wins as they fell to the winner 5 minutes from the end of extra time.Chris Elliswas outstanding for Colts deputising in central defence with the assured Michael Ross whilstDan Fensomeworked hard in midfield.


The first half of this game saw HARCOB have much the better of the play and Northaw were denied a shot on goal whilst for the Colts midfielderChris Sheridanhit the post, whilst the Northaw keeper made 2 fine save to deny James Warner andDan Fensomebefore after 27 minutes HARCOB took the lead whenOliver Spicerdummied aMarc Oakleycorner forChris Ellisto drive into the net from inside the box.


Poor defending from a corner allowed the all to run through the HARCOB box to be forced home from close range after 75 minutes to give Northaw an unexpected equaliser but James Warner was on hand 5 minutes later to restore the lead when he lobbed the keeper after being set up byOliver Spicer. That should have been enough to win the tie but once again failing to attack the ball from a set piece saw the tie levelled again 5 minutes from normal time.


Extra time saw HARCOB create a number of chances and James Warner, Jamie Mangan andMarc Oakleyall went close before another set piece was the undoing of HARCOB just 4 minutes from the end of time to see them crashing out of  a cup that they were expected to win.


Mangan at the double


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 4, ONeills Celtic 1

(Review League Division 3)              1 February 2009


Harpenden Colts returned to their league programme with a comfortable 4-1 win against O’Neill’s Celtic set up by a 4th minute penalty byMarc Oakleytogether with  a brace for the hard working Jamie Mangan and a single by Daniel Fensome making a rare appearance in the front line. A solid performance at the back supported by a fine display byColin Arnsbyin the Colts goal helped seal the win that saw the O’Neill’s keeper in fine form withCraeg Deeryand Simon Cooper also shining for the Colts.


Holidays and injuries saw a below full strength Colts without their 3 top scorers but any worries that ManagerSteve Oakleymay have had on the goal front were quickly set aside whenMarc Oakleycoolly slotted home a penalty in the 4th minute after Jamie Mangan was tripped in the box. Jamie Mangan was then rewarded for a hard working display after 23 minutes when he closed down a defender in possession to win the ball and go on to slot home past the advancing keeper. The Colts continued to have a number of good chances but the O’Neill’s keeper again kept them at bay.


The second half saw HARCOB give the ball away cheaply after just 5 minutes to let O’Neill’s back into the game but they stepped up a gear to pull further ahead after 55 minutes when a trademarkChris Ellisdefence splitting ball saw Jamie Mangan clear to slot home his second one on one of the day to put Colts 3-1 up. Daniel Fensome and Jamie Mangan then went close again only being denied by the O’Neill’s keeper before after 62 minutesCraeg Deeryplayed a great ball into space for Daniel Fensome to latch onto and slot home to make it 4-1. SubOliver Spicercame close to making it 5 and O’Neill’s had their keeper to thank for preventing further chances being turned into goals in a Colts performance which saw Simon Cooper andCraeg Deeryshine and stand in keeperColin Arnsbymake some good saves late in the game.


Warner double brace fells Oaks


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 8, Oaks Reserves 1

(Herts County Junior Cup 5th Round)           18 January 2009


A double brace of goals and a double brace of assists by James Warner sent Harpenden Colts Old Boys into the quarter finals of the Herts County Junior Cup with an 8 – 1 victory over Harpenden side Oaks Reserves. Warner’s assists set up a brace byMarc Oakleyand singles by Steven Easterbrook and Tom Dyball. Stand in keeperColin Arnsbycelebrated his 150th appearance for Colts with a solid display with Michael Ross andAndrew Smithalso outstanding in the Colts defence whilstChris Sheridanimpressed upon his return from injury. Harry Hunt poached the goal for the Oaks.


A reshuffled HARCOB were made to work hard in the opening stages by determined rivals Oaks but after a number of chances went begging James Warner broke the deadlock after 18 minutes when a great route 1 ball by central defender Michael Ross sent James Warner clear to slot home. Five minutes later the lively James Warner was clipped in the box andMarc Oakleydespatched the resultant penalty to put Colts 2-0 up. Colts then found themselves in the driving seat after 28 minutes whenOliver Spicercrossed for James Warner to shimmie and fire home  from close range to make it 3—0. Harry Hunt pulled a goal back for Oaks when HARCOB failed to attack a free kick and gave Hunt an easy chance after 37 minutes. 


HARCOB stepped up a gear after half time and another great route 1 ball from Michael Ross sent Warner clear for a copy of his first goal and his hat-trick after just 2 minutes and Warner was on hand to fire home his 4th with a great near post volley fromMarc Oakley’s cross after good work by Simon Cooper sent the winger clear. HARCOB continued to create a number of chances but it took a great challenge byChris Sheridanto prevent Oaks getting another goal back. James Warner then set up Tom Dyball to fire home after 79 minutes and then Warner repeated the complement by setting up Steven Easterbrook 3 minutes later to fire Colts seventh.Marc Oakleywas then on hand to fire a screamer past the keeper 4 minutes from time after being sent clear by James Warner to complete the a happy day for Colts and stand in keeperColin Arnsbywho was celebrating his 150th appearance. Michael Ross andAndrew Smithwere outstanding in the Colts defence whilstChris EllisandChris Sheridanalso impressed in midfield.


Warner brace decides six pointer


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 3, Oaklands 0

(Review league Division 3)               28 December 2008


Holidays, illness and injury saw HARCOB making 6 changes to last weeks County Cup match winning side in this division 3 match against a useful Oaklands side but late goals before the end of each half saw them take all the points in this six pointer of a game with a brace by James Warner well supported by a single by Steven Easterbrook. Stuart Brown andChris Elliswere outstanding in the Colts midfield whilst Tom Brennan and Michael Ross worked hard to contain the lively Oaklands forwards well supported by keeperCharlie Collins.



HARCOB had much the better of the early exchanges and had created chances to go ahead through James Warner, Stuart Brown and Tom Dyball before after 20 minutes good work by Stuart Brown saw James Warner round the keeper and his goal bound shot deflected in by a Oaklands defender for a deserved Colts opener. Colts then created but did not take numerous chances before a minute before the break a number of block shots saw Stuart Brown pounce on a rebound which was blocked on the line but Steven Easterbrook was first to the rebound and fired home from close range to see Colts 2 – 0 up at the break.


The second half saw Colts continue to press for another goal and they created a number of chances at regular intervals but the Oaklands’ keeper was in fine form making some great saves from James Warner,Craeg Deeryand Stuart Brown and when he was beaten by a fierce Michael Ross volley the post came to his aid. HARCOB sealed the game a minute from time when Steven Easterbrook won possession outside the Oaklands box and his cross shot was parried by the keeper but James Warner was first to the loose ball to volley home to make it a deserved 3 – 0  win for the Colts.




4 goal Warner brings down high flying Penguins


Miami Penguins 3, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5 (aet)

(Herts County Junior Cup 4th Round)           21 December 2008


In a game in which they were never behind, Harpenden Colts Old Boys finally got their twice postponed County Cup 4th Round game against a high flying Miami Penguins side boasting a 100% record in the Watford League without conceding a goal but the Watford side simply had no answer to a hard working Colts side and an on fire James Warner whose 4 goals included a landmark 200th goal for the club and who also provided the assist for a single by Steven Easterbrook to seal a place in the last 16. Central midfielders Dan Fensome and Chris Ellis were outstanding for Colts whist stand in keeper Colin Arnsby made a number of good saves to keep the Penguins at bay when it mattered.


HARCOB took the game to the Penguins and had most of the early chances with James Warner and Oliver Spicer having chances saved before after 35 minutes Chris Ellis won possession and drew the defenders before putting James Warner though to slot home the opener and his 200th goal for the club.


The second half saw HARCOB continue to press and they were rewarded when James Warner broke clear to round the keeper and then cross at a tight angle for Steven Easterbrook to tap in from close range after 55 minutes. Colts paid the penalty for ball watching at a corner after 60 minutes to give a goal away from a free header but they struck back 5 minutes later when pressure byMarc Oakleyand James Warner saw a hurried clearance from the keeper shut down by James Warner and rebound into the net. Another free gift, this time from a free kick, saw Penguins get an undeserved goal back with another free header. Another almost identical free header 5 minutes from time saw Penguins equalise but the Colts looked to have won a great chance to settle matters when James Warner was brought down in the box and they saw the initial penalty award reversed to a kick outside the box.


Extra time saw HARCOB get more space and just 7 minutes into the first period a cross-shot by the overlapping Daniel Pringle was only palmed out by the keeper and James Warner was first to the rebound for his hat-trick. Warner was on hand to seal the win 6 minutes from the end of the second period when a great determined run by Simon Beazley saw him go past 3 players and then commit defenders before slipping in James Warner to hit his 4th to seal a place in the last 16 against Harpenden side Oaks Reserves.


Daniel Fensome and Chris Ellis were the stars in the Colts midfield with Steven Easterbrook also putting in his best performance of the season whist Michael Ross and Andrew Smith were twin colossi at the back. 



Lucky Hat-Trick


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 6, Marshalswick 2

(RFL  Junior Cup 3rd Round)          30 November 2008


A hat– trick by midfielder Andrew Luckhurst together with singles by James O’Brien, Oliver Spicer and James Warner were enough to see Colts through to the quarter finals of the Junior Cup against Division 5 outfit Marshallswick who hit back with goals in both halves and whose keeper was in fine form. Man of the match James Warner capped a fine display by providing a hat-trick of assists as didMarc Oakley. Steven Easterbrook was unlucky not to be able to celebrate his 100th appearance for Colts with a goal butDan Fensomewas also outstanding in the Colts midfield.


For the second week running HARCOB struggled to get a team out and managerSteve Oakleyagain named himself as a substitute. HARCOB again created a number of early chances only to see the Marshalswick keeper in fine form. Colts went ahead after 12 minutes when a long through byChris Elliswas headed on by James Warner for Andrew Luckhurst to rise majestically in the box to head home from 10 yards. With HARCOB pressing forward they found themselves caught on the break and a Marshalswick cross from the colts right was then turned in for the equaliser after 25 minutes. Colts regained the lead after 31 minutes when aMarc Oakleycorner was only half cleared to Andrew Luckhurst who rifled home from outside the box. The hard working James Warner then provided the first of his 3 assists when his cross after 44 minutes was squeezed in at the far post by James O’Brien.


The second half saw HARCOB raise the pace and after 48 minutes Andrew Luckhurst hit his hat-trick by turning in a loose ball from aMarc Oakleycorner to make it 4 – 1. Marc Oakleythen made it a hat—trick of assists after 54 minutes when good interplay with James Warner saw Oakley’s cross turned in by James Warner through a bunch of defenders. Warner then made it a hat trick of assists himself after 54 minutes when his cross was swept in by the hard working Oliver Spicer. Colts then gave away the ball inside their own box to concede a sift goal after 60 minutes but the Marshalswick keeper continued to make a string of saves to keep HARCOB at bay in the final 30 minutes.


HARCOB are now at home to Dynamo Sopwell in the quarter finals.


Colts show musketeer spirit to topple Kings


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 4, Kings Head 3

(RFL  Division 3)                23 November 2008


Harpenden Colts OB struggled to get a team out after a number of absences through injuries, illness and no shows and managerSteve Oakleywas forced to name himself as the only available substitute. Nevertheless the Colts failed to take numerous chances in this match had display all of their renown team spirit to win a game after being 2-0 up after 20 minutes with goals by Steven Easterbrook and debutant Tom Dyball only to see Kings Head level through a disputed penalty and a defensive error. James Warner then put Colts in front again only to see a soft equaliser put Kings level before a penalty byMarc Oakleysealed the game for Colts afterChris Newcombewas brought down in the box. Midfielder Andrew Luckhurst looked solid as stand in keeper for the Colts whilst Tom Dyball impressed on his debut.


With only 5 players from the side that started in the 8-0 drubbing of Kings Head in the earlier away fixture a much reshuffled HARCOB had to work hard to settle in with a number of players playing in unfamiliar positions. Good work down the right byChris NewcombeandMarc Oakleysaw the ball fed to Steven Easterbrook who played a neat one – two with James Warner to fond himself with time and space to slot past the keeper after 7 minutes to put Colts ahead. More good work down the right 10 minutes later sawMarc Oakley’s cross shot blocked with James Warner first to the rebound to have another shot blocked before the ball broke to debutant Tom Dyball who simply thumped the ball home from 12 yards. HARCOB conceded a shock goal back after 20 minutes when a disputed penalty saw stand in keeper Andrew Luckhurst sent the wrong way to put Kings Back in the game. HARCOB then created a number of good chances to take control of the game with James Warner going close many times before half time.


A defensive error early in the second half saw the ball given away and Colts hit on the break for Kings to lob stand in keeper Andrew Luckhurst to draw level. HARCOB then had to draw on all their team spirit to fight back and they pulled ahead again after 58 minutes when a great cross by Oliver Spicer found James Warner to slot home inside the far post. Disaster struck again for HARCOB when they were manhandled and dispossessed to send Kings clear to level once more midway through the half. HARCOB continued to create and not take chances with Warner, Easterbrook, and Oakley all going Close and Michael Ross hitting the bar before a great solo run byChris Newcombeplaying in un unfamiliar left back role ended with him being brought down in the box andMarc Oakley  stepping up to send the keeper the wrong way for the winner.





Seconds for Pudding 


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 3, RBL Harpenden 2 (aet)

(RFL Junior Cup R2)         16 November 2008


Harpenden Colts OB had to battle hard in this local derby cup game and after gifting RBL an opening goal they replied through James Warner and thenAndrew Smithonly to see another gift goal conceded send the game into extra time. Defender Andrew “Pudding” Smith then capped a fine performance with a second helping of a goal early in extra time to send the Colts through.Chris Newcombewas solid in the Colts defence with the lively James Warner a constant threat up front.


HARCOB started the game lowly and with RBL physically closing players down found it hard to get the passes flowing but despite this created early chances for James Warner,Chris Ellisand James O’Brien which could have set Colts on their way. The Colts then paid the penalty for ball watching at a corner which saw a free header inside the six yard box gift RBL the lead just 4 minutes before half time. The goal fired HARCOB out of their complacency and they immediately swept back upfield and a move involving Oliver Spicer andChris Ellissaw Oliver Spicer just fail to connect with aChris Ellis  cross but the ball was then swept in on the far post by James Warner for the equaliser.


The second half saw Colts continue to try to create but not take chances and keeper Matt Corran had to make a couple of smart saves to keep RBL at bay before after 52 minutes defenderAndrew Smithghosted in on a Michael Ross free kick to steer the ball inside the far post to put Colts ahead. Colts then started to look comfortable in their lead and had a number of chances to increase their lead when James Warner and Oliver Spicer went close but poor defending and failing to attack the ball saw RBL gifted an equaliser with just a few minutes of the game remaining.


Extra time saw the Colts grab the winner when Andrew “Pudding” Smith grabbed a second helping of a goal after just 4 minutes of the first period when he swept the ball in after a James Warner shot from an Oliver Spicer corner was blocked on the line. The Colts had to battle hard to stay in front with Matt Corran also having to make some fine saves in a physical game that game managerSteve Oakleywith numerous injury worries for coming matches.


HARCOB now meet division 5 side Marshallswick in the next round.


JOB well done  


Radlett Village 1, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5

(Herts County Cup R3)      9 November 2008


Harpenden Colts OB struggled to put together their normal flowing game for the first 30 minutes of this Herts County Junior Cup 3rd round match against fellow division 3 outfit Radlett Village until striker James Warner broke the deadlock and then a maiden strike by midfielder James O’Brien set the Colts up for a comfortable 5—1 win with a second half brace by Oliver Spicer and a single by Jamie Mangan sealing the win. SubstituteDan Fensomewas outstanding in the Colts midfield with full back Daniel Pringle working hard on the overlap.


The Colts created but did not take a number of first half chances with James Warner, Andrew Luckhurst and Jamie Mangan all going close. Keeper Matt Corran was called upon to make a couple of smart saves to keep Radlett out of the game before after 30 minutesMarc Oakleysent James Warner away for a one on one with the keeper and he duly obliged with his 20th goal of the season.  James O’Brien made it 2 just 5 minutes later when he drove a half volley from outside the box after a nod down byChris Ellisof a Ollie Spicer corner.


The second half saw the Colts step up a gear and they were rewarded after 53 minutes when the hard working Jamie Mangan sent Oliver Spicer on his way to shrug off an intended Radlett sandwich and then slip the ball under the advancing keeper to make it 3-0 and the Colts were then cruising after 66 minutes when great interchange work by Daniel Fensome and James Warner saw Warner turn his marker and drive the ball into the box for Oliver Spicer to sweep in at the near post. The Colts paid the price for not being decisive in dealing with the second ball from a Radlett corner to let Radlett into the game after 69 minutes but they replied immediately within a minute when the alert James Warner split the Radlett defence to send Jamie Mangan in for a one on one which he rolled into the net to make it 5-1. SubstituteDan Fensomeimpressed in midfield and Dan Pringle worked hard on second half overlaps.


Colts are now away to Watford Sunday League side Miami Penguins in the next round.




Warner double hat trick  


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 9, Brookman’s Park “A” 0

(RSFL Division 3)               2 November 2008


Man of the Match striker James Warner hit a hat trick in each half and provided 2 assists against Brookman’s Park “A” as Harpenden Colts OB cruised to a 9-0 win well supported by singles byChris Ellis, Oliver Spicer andMarc Oakleywho celebrated his 250th appearance for the Colts with a “goal of the season” fine volley from outside the box. Jamie Mangan was superb in a supporting striker role providing 2 assists whilst keeper Matt Corran was on hand to produce 2 smart saves in the closing stages to give Colts a clean sheet.


HARCOB went ahead after just 2 minutes when James Warner headed on an Ollie Spicer corner andChris Ellisrose to head home from close range. James Warner then scored the first of his six after 14 minutes when the hard working Jamie Mangan sent him on his way to slot home to make it 2 nil. The Mangan—Warner combination worked again after 21 minutes when Jamie Mangan chased the ball down and crossed for James Warner to nod home for his second and then complete his hat trick after 38 minutes when CaptainChris Sheridansplit the Park defence with a great through ball for Warner to shimmie past the keeper and then slot home a well taken one on one to make it 4-0 at the break.


The Colts resumed their scoring spree 2 minutes after half time when Park could only half clear an Oliver Spicer corner and the ball sat up forMarc Oakleyto celebrate his 250th appearance in a Colts shirt by setting himself and unleash a powerful side volley that flew inside the far post to make it five. Warner resumed the goal trail after 51 minutes when he was on hand to sweep home an Andy Luckhurst flick on from aMarc Oakleynear post corner. Warner was then  on hand just a minute later when he was first to the ball to bundle it home whenAndrew Smith’s sliced shot from anotherMarc Oakleycorner. Midfielder Ollie Spicer was then on hand to deliver a killer cross after 66 minutes that saw James Warner race into the box to sweep home on the far post to complete his double hat trick. The lively Ollie Spicer was rewarded after 76 minutes when James Warner helped on anotherMarc Oakleycross to fire home for number nine. The colts should have made it a magnificent ten with the last kick of the game when an interchange involvingMarc Oakley, James O’Brien, and James Warner saw substitute Stuart Brown through on goal but firing just wide. Matthew Corran produce two good second half saves to keep a clean sheet for the Colts whilst full backsChris Newcombeand Dan Pringle both worked hard on the overlap.





Spicer & Warner crown Colts domination


Kings Head 0, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 8

(RSFL Division 3)               26 October 2008


A goal after 3 minutes by Andrew Luckhurst from an Oliver Spicer corner set Harpenden Colts OB on their way to a comfortable win with a well taken hat trick by James Warner and singles byMarc Oakley, Steven Easterbrook, Jamie Mangan and a superb solo goal by man of the match Oliver Spicer adding to his 3 assists and crowning a comprehensive performance that saw stand in keeper Daniel Fensome also making 3 good saves to complete a hard worked shut out.


HARCOB worked hard from the start and Andrew Luckhurst was first to a near post corner by Oliver Spicer to drive home for the Colts opener after just 3 minutes. The Colts created a number of further chances with wide playersMarc Oakleyand Oliver Spicer ever available to feed the ball into the lively James Warner and it wasMarc Oakleywho fed James Warner after 9 minutes to use his strength to shake off a challenge before slotting the ball home to make it 2—0. James Warner was then the beneficiary of a great give and go with Jamie Mangan to make it 3-0 after 18 minutes before Man of the Match Oliver Spicer latched onto a poor clearance after 28 minutes to pull the ball back for James Warner to rise majestically to head home for his hat trick after 28 minutes. Jamie Mangan was then on hand to be rewarded for his constant running and closing defenders down when Andrew Luckhurst fed the ball for Mangan to coolly slot home when one on one with the keeper after 39 minutes to kill the game.


The second half saw HARCOB substitutions upset their balance for a while beforeMarc Oakleycoolly slotted home a penalty after 54 minutes after James Warner was manhandled in the box at a corner. Substitute Steven Easterbrook then headed home from another Oliver Spicer corner after 64 minutes to make it a magnificent seven for Colts before Oliver Spicer made it 8 after a great solo run that saw him go past 4 defenders to fire home 6 minutes from time for a comfortable 8-0 win. Midfielder Daniel Fensome impressed as stand in keeper making 3 good saves with Michael Ross dominating at the back.


Colts leap Gate into Quarter Final


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5, The Gate 1

(RSFL Division 3)               19 October 2008


HARCOB dominated the early stages of this game but only had a well taken strike by James Warner to take into half time at 1-0. The second half saw HARCOB step up a gear with goals byMarc Oakley, a second strike by James Warner and singles by John Barker andAndrew Smithto seal a quarter final place in the Intermediate Cup despite gifting a goal back midway into the second half. Substiture James O’Brien impressed upon his return from injury as did Jamie Mangan and Ollie Spicer who also provided valuable assists.


With HARCOB closing the ball down and passing well when in possession they dominated early proceedings and were rewarded when after 12 minutes Jamie Mangan fed James Warner to slot home to send Colts on their way. Keeper Matthew Corran had to be at his best to make a great save after 22 minutes to keep The Gate locked out of the game.Marc Oakleycould consider himself hard done by when a well taken goal was ruled out for an earlier offside and Andrew Luckhurst,Marc Oakleyand Ollie Spicer also came close in a first half that Colts looked comfortable.


The second half saw HARCOB step up a gear with Daniel Fensome replacing the injured Andrew Luckhurst and Fensome immediately made his presence felt after 51 minutes when he took a pass from Jamie Mangan and fed wide midfielderMarc Oakleyjust inside the box to fire home inside the near post. The Gate pulled a goal back after 65 minutes when two great close range stops by keeper Matthew Corran were not cleared and the ball was forced home at the third attempt. Newly introduced substitute James O’Brien then celebrated his return from injury after 28 minutes by battling through midfield to slip in James Warner to net the third off the inside of the far post to kill the game. Four minutes later Oliver Spicer capped a fine display by stroking a killer ball through the midfield for to pick up John Barker’s third man run as he ran through to commit the keeper to fire number four and a very rare goal.Andrew Smithheaded home the 5th after 79 minutes when the Gate failed to deal with an Ollie Spicer corner and only a desperate goal line clearance denied Michael Ross a 30 yard screamer when he latched onto a clearance from another corner. CaptainChris Sheridanimpressed in midfield as did full backsChris Newcombeand Daniel Pringle.







Warner brace sets Colts on their way


Spread Eagle (Ware) 0, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 6

(Herts County Junior Cup R2)         12 October 2008


HARCOB made hard work of what should have been a banker comfortable away victory against Ware basedWalthamand Mercury League bottom side Spread Eagle but despite creating and not taking a host of chances they had to wait for CaptainChris Sheridanto show them the way after 24 minutes when his cross shoot sailed into the net. Two second half goals by Man of the Match James Warner with singles by Oliver Spicer, Steven Easterbrook andCraeg Deerycompleted the rout.


The Colts started well enough and should have been ahead after just a minute but the Spread Eagle keeper was in tremendous form for the first half that saw chances come and go to Ollie Spicer, Andy Luckhurst,Chris EllisandChris Sheridanbut keeper Matthew Corran had to be at his best to claw a rare Eagle effort out of the top corner to keep the home side out of the game after 15 minutes. A cross shot byChris Sheridanbroke the deadlock after 24 minutes but although HARCOB continued to dominate they just could not put the ball in the net.


The second half saw normal service resumed after just 4 minutes when Daniel Pringle sent James Warner on his way on a great solo run past 4 opposition to fire home from 20 yards for a contender for goal of the season. The fired up James Warner rose to head home an Oliver Spicer cross from outside the box to make it 3—0 after 4 minutes later and he then returned the complement by closing down an Eagles clearance to send Oliver Spicer clear to pass home inside the far post to make it 4—0 and game over.  Substitute Steven Easterbrook then fired home a spectacular volley on the turn from aMarc Oakleycross  after 76 minutes and the set up a headed pass from a James Warner cross for late substituteCraeg Deeryto rise majestically on the post  to make it six o the best from HARCOB. Michael Ross commanded the Colts defence when they were under pressure and matt Corran in the Colts goal had to be brave and alert to make a double save to keep the clean sheet that the Colts deserved.


Ollie Spicer hits double brace


Radlett Village 0, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 5

(RSFL Division 3)               5 October 2008


HARCOB only had 11 fit or available players for this match against the league leaders of the day but they started fast and with their trademark passing game simply dominated much of the game and were 2 goals up in the first 12 minutes and created but did not take numerous chances before Daniel Pringle added a third early in the second half with two more by Oliver Spicer sealing a well deserved win that saw lively man of the match James Warner setting up two goals and the improving John Barker setting up two more. Matthew Corran was solidly impressive in the Colts goal making a couple of good saves when it mattered to keep Radlett out of the game.


The Colts simply passed Radlett off the park in the opening minutes and an interchange involving Daniel Pringle, James Warner and John Barker saw John Barker behind the full pack to cross for Ollie Spicer to sweep home after 6 minutes. A carbon copy move after 12 minutes saw James Warner repeat the move and cross for Ollie Spicer to net the second and give Radlett a mountain to climb. The colts continued to create good chances and Ollie Spicer, James Warner and John Barker all came close but Matthew Corran in the Colts goal had to be at hisJenningsbest saving with his feet midway through the half to keep Radlett out of the game.


The second half saw HARCOB restore their passing moves and a great ball byChris Ellissaw  Daniel Pringle with time and space on the left to cut inside and fire home inside the near post after 3 minutes of the second half to set the Colts on their way. The Colts continued to dominate but had to throw bodies at shots in and around the box on more than one occasion to keep the momentum  before John Barker cut the ball back for Oliver Spicer to side foot home with 15 minutes left to make it 4-0. With the Colts now finding even more time and space a man of the match James Warner capped a fine display by setting Ollie Spicer clear to lob the keeper to make it 5-0 and game over. Un-used and injured substituteMarc Oakleydid a great job on the line for Colts.




Corran saves HARCOB’s blushes


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 1, Lifted Music 1 (aet)

(HARCOB win 5 – 4 on penalties)

(RSFL Junior Cup 1st Round)          28 September 2008


A much depleted and reshuffled HARCOB made hard work of a game that they were expected to win and needed substitute and Club Captain Chris Sherridan to come off the bench to sweep home an equaliser after a soft cross was allowed to evade everyone to put Lifted a goal ahead midway in the second half. Extra time saw HARCOB create but not take numerous chances before stand in keeper Matthew Corran became the penalty shoot out hero saving a penalty and then firing home HARCOBS 5th and winning penalty to put them into the next round against RBL Harpenden.


With numerous players returning to University and key injuries HARCOB had to shuffle last weeks pack but they looked short of touch and commitment in a first half that saw Jamie Mangan hit the bar in a half that neither side seriously threatened.


The second half saw more action form the Colts but a soft cross into the box saw the ball not attacked and creep direct inside the far post to put a physical Lifted side ahead halfway into the second half. Club CaptainChris Sheridanimmediately joined the fray as substitute and his energy and commitment was rewarded when an Ollie Spicer corner was knocked down by Steven Easterbrook forChris Sheridanto sweep home from close range with 5 minutes left.


Extra time saw the Colts create numerous chances with Ollie Spicer missing out on a one on one chance and returning midfielder Jon Barker battling hard in midfield. Lifted were reduced to 10 men following an off the ball incident before Matthew Corran became the penalty shoot out hero saving a penalty and watching Ollie Spicer, Michael Ross,Marc Oakleyand Chris Ellis fire home their spot keeks before stepping up himself to wing the game for the Colts.


Easterbrook at the Double


Oaklands 1, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 2

(RSFL Division 3)               21 September 2008


HARCOB deserved this hard fought win against a much fancied Oaklands side thanks to two superb strikes by Steven Easterbrook, a solid performance from stand in keeperColin Arnsbyand a defence well marshalled by man of the match Michael Ross. Oaklands pulled a goal back 30 minutes from time but a reshuffled formation saw the Colts hold on and almost increase their lead when a strike from Stuart Brown was cleared after looking to be over the line.


HARCOB looked good in the early stages of this game but stand in keeperColin Arnsbyhas to make a superb save from 25 yards to keep the scores level before Steven Easterbrook turn on a ball played to his feet just outside the box by the industrious Chris Ellis to fire home a goal after 28 minutes that would have graced the premiership.


The second half saw HARCOB step up a gear and they went further ahead after just 3 minutes when James Warner flicked on a Stuart Brown ball for Steven Easterbrook to ghost in on the blind side to simply thump the ball into the roof of the net touching the underside of the bar on the way. Oaklands pulled a goal back when HARCOB allowed the left winger to skip past 3 challenges inside the box to cut the ball back to be swept home but they considered themselves ahrd done b when a superb strike was too hot to handle for the Oaklands keeper and seemed to be over the line before it was scooped clear. HARCOB Were made to defend hard in the closing stages but the defence well marshalled by man of the match Michael Ross held firm.


Colts cruise into 3rd Round


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 7, Marquis of Granby 1

(RSFL Intermediate Cup 2nd Round)             14 September 2008


Harpenden Colts Old Boys cruised into the 3rd round of the Intermediate Cup with a tidy performance that saw Man of the Match James Warner netting 5 supported by singles from Andy Luckhurst and debutant Steven Easterbrook. Stand in keeperColin Arnsbywas solid in goal just getting a hand to the Marquis late penalty consolation goal with busy Beazley providing 4 assists.


James Warner opened the scoring after 10 minutes from a Simon Beazley cross but the Colts then created and missed a host of chances before netting the second after 44 minutes with James Warner converting a penalty after he was brought down in the box. In injury time Warner then made it 3 for his hat-trick sweeping in a Steven Easterbrook diving header from a Stuart Brown cross.


The second half saw the Colts go further ahead after 53 minutes when James Warner netted from another Simon Beazley cross. Warner then had a fine strike disallowed before Steven Easterbrook made it 5 –0  bing first to a loose ball after efforts by Warner, Stuart Brown and Simon Beazley were blocked. Warner then made it a personal five and 6-0 to Colts after 70 minutes when he latched onto another good cross by Simon Beazley. The Colts then created and missed more chances before Marquis pulled on back after a collision of heels just inside the box sawColin Arnsbygetting a hand to a penalty taken by former Colt Martin Smith. Andrew Luckhurst made it lucky seven by bending the ball around the wall from a free kick after Stuart Brown was tripped outside the box to see Colts cruise through to the 3rd round.


Reshuffled Colts couldnt find their aces


Harpenden Colts Old Boys 2, RBL Harpenden 3

(RSFL Division 3)               7 September 2008


A much reshuffled Harpenden Colts Old Boys just couldn’t find top gear for much of this match and found themselves at the unexpected wrong end of a defeat by the odd goal in five despite well taken strikes by James Warner and Jamie Mangan with James Warner also being denied by the bar and a great lob effort by the every improving James O’Brien going just over.


The Colts themselves 1—0  down at the break in a first half that neither side looked like threatening to score although the Colts could claim to have created the better of those chances on offer.


The second half found the Colts stepping up a gear and finding more time and space with the lively James Warner hitting the bar an a number of good chances being created before Colin Arnsbyfed James Warner  whose fierce shot from 25 yards was just too hot to handle for the RBL keeper to make it 1-1. Ball watching from a delayed cross saw the Colts give a free header in their own box to go 2-1 down and then a penalty after a mistimed tackle saw the colts go 3-1 down with 15 minutes left. The colts then started to play their trademark short passing game and created numerous chances  with James Warner hitting the bar and efforts by Mangan and O’Brien going close before Warner cut inside past 3 players to feed Mangan to fire home from outside the box to reduce the arrears.  More pressure from Colts saw them very vulnerable on the break and stand in keeper Matthew Corran made a number of point blank saves to keep the Colts in the game when it really mattered.




Colts subdue Warriors


Cottonmill Warriors 1, Harpenden Colts Old Boys 9

(RSFL Friendly)                  24 August 2008


Harpenden Colts Old Boys celebrated their first game since forming in the close season with a comfortable victory over third division outfit Cottonmill Warriors with a hat-trick by the impressive Stuart Brown with singles by Simon Beazley, Oliver Spicer, Dan Fensome,Colin Arnsby,Craeg Deeryand a 30 yard screamer from Michael Ross. James O’Brien made a steady debut stepping up from the youth sides.


HARCOB played some impressive football from the start but it took a swerving and twisting long range effort from Simon Beazley to open the scoring after 15 minutes.Craeg Deeryadded the second 5 minutes later from an Ollie Spicer cross withAndrew Smithputting pressure on the ball. Dan Fensome pounced upon a loose ball after 27 minutes to put HARCOB 3 up and Stuart Brown forced home the fourth from an Ollie Spicer cross after 30 minutes to put Colts well in the driving seat. Ollie Spicer then cut inside from the right to justify his Beckham number 7 by curling the ball in from an angle outside the box to make it 5 nil at half time.


HARCOB resumed their dominance 3 minutes after the break when Stuart Brown netted his second but the Colts then immediately switched off outside their own box to allow Cottonmill time and space to lob a soft goal past the otherwise untroubledCharlie Collins. Michael Ross was then given time on the ball after 67 minutes to drive a screamer into the top corner from 30 yards out and he then sent left backColin Arnsbyon his way 5 minutes later to stroke a fine left footed shot into the far corner to make it 8 – 1.Colin Arnsbythen turned provider minutes later by squaring the ball to Stuart Brown to complete a fine hat-trick to complete the scoring.


James O’Brien made a solid debut stepping up from the youth sides with the foundation of a solid defensive display being anchored by Tom Brennan andAndrew Smithin the middle at the back with the marauding Simon Cooper providing support at right back.