Justin Bell impresses as ruthless Village condemn Eagles to relegation
Somerset Eagles 0 North Village 9
North Village Rams bounced back from three consecutive losses in emphatic style on Saturday at White Hill, helping themselves to a convincing win over Somerset Eagles and in the process, relegating their hosts, who were suffering their fourteenth loss of the season.
Village dominated the early exchanges, playing nicely through the Eagles press to work their way into dangerous positions on several occasions without really troubling their opponents’ defence.
However, the West End side were dangerous on the counter-attack, with Shakir Smith getting played into space through a pass from Anwar Telford before the striker fired wide.
Village found their opening goal from a set-piece midway through the first half after midfielder Vernon Perinchief was taken down just inside the opposition’s half.
Terryn Fray stepped up and looped the free-kick over goalkeeper Joshua Roberts and into the top corner to give his team the lead. They quickly made it two, moments later, after a cross by Kyler Knights was poorly cleared for Jalen Harvey with the left-back pulling a pass for Justin Bell to settle and finish at the near post.
Village continued to underline their dominance for the remainder of the first half, despite being pegged back by counter-attacks on a few occasions.
They would, however, increase their advantage from the penalty spot, after an incisive midfield move culminated with Pierre Smith finding Tahmi Williams just inside the penalty area, before the latter was taken down through a clumsy tackle by Kieran Evans.
Rai Simons placed the resulting spot-kick inside the right post to extend the visitors’ lead and with the half-time interval approaching, Village again found the net to begin the commiserations.
The onslaught continued in the second half as within ten minutes of the restart, the nine-time league champions added another goal through a beautifully-worked move, which saw Owen Botelho finding Bell, whose initial effort was well-stopped by Roberts, who could do nothing to prevent Simons from scoring from the rebound.
Midway through the second period, Bell scored his second.
Substitute Kristian Carrington cut back nicely from the left to find the forward, who controlled before firing into the near post. He completed his hat-trick from the penalty spot after he was fouled in the box by a lunging Shentoine Lambert before picking himself up and sending Roberts the wrong way.
The visitors completed their rout with two more goals in the final 20 minutes with goals from Bell and Smith, who ended with four goals.
Head coach Kenny Thompson, a former Eagles coach, was pleased with his side’s ball retention and highlighted his team’s target for the remainder of the season.
“We kept the ball well. We spoke about taking care of the ball at half-time, to make sure we completed our passes,” said Thompson.
“We are still in the competition (FA Cup) and want to end the season with some silverware.”
North Village: Fray 19, Bell 21, 54, 66 pen, 78, Simons 26 pen, 53, Harvey 30, Smith 73
Somerset Eagles (4-2-3-1): J Roberts 5 – S Lambert 4, K Harrison 5, K Evans 5, M Iris-Simmons 3 – D Simmons 4 (sub: H Butterfield 50min 5), R Saggar 4 (sub: J Rogers 76) – S Smith 5, E Fubler 5, Z Smith 5 – A Telford 5. Substitute not used: W Tucker. Booked: Smith, Telford
North Village (4-1-4-1): O DeShields 5 – J Harvey 6, Q Lema 6, T Fray 7, K Knights 6 (sub: K Carrington 58 6) – V Perinchief 5 (sub: L Outerbridge 58 5) – T Williams 6, R Simons 7 (sub: J Smith-DeShields 58 6), P Smith 6, O Botelho 6 – J Bell 8
Referee: T Simons