Match Reports

Peter Butcher Memorial Trophy | 31 January 2024

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-0 Takeley After a win each in the January Trilogy, Bengal took on Takeley for the final time at Mile End Stadium. After the defeat over the weekend, Bengal came out strong and controlled possession. The breakthrough came just after the quarter hour mark when Sam Edwards spotted the keeper off his line and then fired in a rocket from 30 yards over the keeper and into the roof of the net! Stunning strike from the skipper to set the tone of the match. Despite chances from both sides, that remained the sole goal of the game as Bengal controlled the majority of it. The win advances Sporting Bengal to the Quarter Finals of the competition.

Essex Senior League Premier Division | 27 January 2024

FT: Takeley 3-2 Sporting Bengal A long trip away started well after Sam Edwards curled into the bottom right corner after Sheri poked the ball ahead of the defender towards his path. Great finish by the skipper to give Bengal the lead but an error at the back soon after gave Takeley the equaliser. Just before half time, Pepple’s shot was saved by the keeper but Sheri was on hand to loop in a header over the keeper and into the back of the net. Bengal up 2-1 at the break. Despite looking comfortable, Bengal failed to keep the lead once again as Takeley somehow found themselves back into the game with a penalty. Soon after, a great finish completed a comeback for Takeley who won 3-2. After back to back defeats, Bengal have a chance to make things right again this Wednesday in the Cup in another tie against Takeley but this time at Mile End Stadium. The final chapter of the January Trilogy against Takeley!

Essex Senior League Premier Division | 20 January 2024

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-2 Barking Unbeaten in 11, Barking came to Mile End Stadium in great form. After a goalless first half, a bit of magic from Yassine down the left wing early in the second half allowed him to cross towards the backpost where Chris was on hand to head in to give Bengal the lead. However, Barking came back strong in search for the equaliser and were gifted a penalty 11 minutes from time. The penalty was dispatched and along with that came the momentum to find the winner which was found late on after a free kick cross wasn’t dealt with and the rebound fell to Hirst who knocked it in. Three deserved points for the visitors. Tough game in very cold and difficult conditions but we don’t have time to dwell on it as we are back in action on Tuesday away to Saffron Walden Town which is another massive test for Bengal.

Errington Challenge cup 1st Round 13/01/24 Takeley vs Sporting Bengal

FT: Takeley 2-3 Sporting Bengal

After a stalemate at half time, an explosive second half saw five goals hit the back of the net as Bengal advance to the next round!

Takeley took the lead early in the second half but Salim was brought down in the penalty box to give Bengal the chance to equalise. The returning Sheri stepped up and found the top right corner to make it 1-1.

Bengal controlled the game and looked dangerous going forward. Carvell’s corner 10 minutes from time was connected by Matty Ball who headed in to give Bengal the lead!

Into the final minutes, Sam Edwards played in Alagi who’s brilliant first touch deceived his marker, then knocked it to the side and fired into the bottom left corner from 20 yards out. A magnificent finish to seal the win.

Takeley did score a consolation to make it a nervy ending but Bengal held on to advance to the next round where Athletic Newham await.

ESL 06/01/24 Sporting Bengal vs Coggeshall Town

FT: Sporting Bengal 5-1 Coggeshall Town The first game of the new year saw the visit of Coggeshall Town at Mile End Stadium. The visitors took the lead when the very impressive 16 year old left winger, Ward, knocked into the net on the counter. It was a shock lead that woke Bengal up. Skipper, Carvell, began to dictate the game pinging the ball all over the pitch and as soon as he was given far too much room, the playmaker found Dami darting towards the box and found him to finish. 1-1. Just before the break, Bengal took the lead when great hold up play by Chris allowed Pepple a strike on goal where he rifled into the top right corner! 2-1 at the break. Clarky not impressed with the performance challenged his team to get more goals in the second half and keep everything out! The message was heard loud and clear as Bengal turned it on in the second half. Yassine’s dazzling run allowed Pepple to shoot which was magnificently saved but Alagi was on hand to turn it in. 3-1. Pepple was key for the next as he was brought down in the box for a penalty. Chris slotted away to make it 4. Into injury time, Sidi played a magnificent ball from keeper to the attacking wingback in Keanu who plucked it out the air and then proceeded to lob the keeper from outside the box to finish the game in style. Final score 5-1. The three points keeps Bengal in second place in the Essex Senior League Premier Division. Good start to 2024!

ESL 23/12/23 Little Oakley vs Sporting Bengal

FT: Little Oakley 3-2 Sporting Bengal In the final game of an exciting and brilliant year for Sporting Bengal, unfortunately it ended in defeat away at Little Oakley. Bengal took the lead in the first half after Alagi’s corner was turned in by the opposition defender. Little Oakley came back and took the lead 2-1. In the second half, Pepple nicked the ball off the last man and then hit an outrageous left foot chip over the keeper which went in off the far post! Stunning goal to make it 2-2. Bengal had the chance to take the lead shortly after but Okah’s penalty was brilliantly saved by the Little Oakley goalkeeper. The miss proved to be decisive as into injury time, a corner towards the back post was wonderfully struck on the volley by Jack Sibbons which fired into the top corner to secure the win for the home team. A great goal to end a thrilling game but unfortunately Bengal were on the wrong side of a dramatic injury time goal this time. Nevertheless, 2023 has been fantastic and the best year in Bengal history after securing promotion through winning the Playoff Final, to shocking the entire Essex Senior League and challenging towards the top of the table where Bengal were the favourites for relegation at the beginning of the season. Unfortunately we didn’t quite end the year at the top of the league as an impressive Tilbury keep winning. But we’ll take second going into 2024 and will be enjoying a long overdue break! Happy holidays from everyone at Sporting Bengal and we’ll see you back in the new year where we’ll give everything to keep pushing and progressing and upsetting the odds.

London Senior Cup 19/12/23 Dulwich Hamlet vs Sporting Bengal

FT: Dulwich Hamlet 3-3 Sporting Bengal (3-5 Pens) London Senior Cup | Second Round | 19 December 2023 BENGAL SHOCK STEP 3 DULWICH HAMLET TO ADVANCE IN THE CUP! After beating League Two AFC Wimbledon in the First Round, Bengal were drawn a tough game away to Step 3 Dulwich Hamlet of the Isthmian Premier League which is three tiers above the Essex Senior League. The lads rose to the occasion at the Champion Hill Stadium and dominated the first 20 mins. A deserved lead came when a Carvell corner was headed towards goal by Pepple and Keanu was there to knock it in to take the lead. Hamlet came back to go ahead 2-1 at half time. However, Bengal didn’t cave in to higher opposition and came out the blocks strong in the second half with Pepple equalising and then Dami giving Bengal the lead! Carvell dominated proceedings in the middle of the park. But into the final minutes, Hamlet equalised. 3-3. Shootout. Sidi saved the first penalty tremendously and then Sheri, Carvell, Yasin, and Alagi converted. For the final pen, up stepped centre back Okah. The pressure was on with over 500 in attendance. Ice cold in his veins, Okah tucked away the winning penalty leading to scenes of jubilation for Bengal! A massive upset in the Cup and a night to remember! The Bengal Express goes on and on and on! 🐯🚂 Next up in the Quarter Finals is another tough away trip to Step 3 opposition in Hendon FC. Keep an eye out on our socials for the date and schedule in the diary. Just one more game in 2023 and it’s away to Little Oakley this Saturday. A win keeps us top of the league to end the year. We still dreaming 💭

ESL 16/12/23 Sporting Bengal vs Stanway Rovers

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-1 Stanway Rovers Essex Senior League | 16 December 2023 Ten men Bengal hit injury time equaliser to salvage a point! A new look Stanway Rovers under new management visited the MES looking to continue their good run of form. A good first half ended in stalemate with both teams creating opportunities without troubling the keepers too much. Within a minute of the restart, Bengal went down to ten men when Sheri was sent off for a second yellow. However despite the disadvantage, Bengal dominated the second half looking to find the goal but it was Rovers who took the lead on the counter with ten minutes to go. Heartbreak for Bengal but the team spirit is second to none and the lads kept pushing and pushing. Into injury time, Carvell whipped in a brilliant corner which troubled the Rovers defence and it was Keanu who got the final touch to equalise! The game wasn’t done there. Following multiple sin bins, injuries and substitutions, there was plenty more to be added on. Into the 98th minute, Alagi burst down the left wing and put in a great low drilled cross which appeared to be destined for the goal but somehow the ball was cleared off the line multiple times and eventually booted away! The MES was in shock, no one could quite believe it didn’t go in. The referee blew the whistle with the points being shared. Bengal still sit top of the league despite not picking up the three points and now head to Isthmian Premier League’s Dulwich Hamlet in the next round of the London Senior Cup on Tuesday. Dulwich average 2000 fans a game so there should be a good atmosphere under the lights. Do get in touch if you wish to travel down to south London for the big game

ESL 13/12/23 Sporting Bengal vs Great Wakering Rovers

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-4 Great Wakering Rovers Essex Senior League | 13 December 2023 It was a night to forget for ‘The Tigers’ after a sluggish display at Mile End Stadium which resulted in a 4-1 defeat at the hands of Great Wakering Rovers. The game started positively and it was Bengal that took the lead after a trademark Steven Carvell set piece delivery was headed in by striker Christian Gyamfi. Sporting then spurned a couple of chances to extend their lead but wasteful finishing and good goalkeeping kept them out. As half time approached, Rovers equalised from a corner. The 2nd half saw a very below par performance from Sporting, littered with individual errors. To their credit, Great Wakering took full advantage and capitalised on 3 defensive errors to race into a 4-1 lead and take all 3 points. The defeat ends a six match winning streak. Bengal now host Stanway Rovers on Saturday and will hope to get back to winning ways

ESL 02/12/23 Sporting Bengal vs Ilford

FT: Sporting Bengal 5-4 Ilford Essex Senior League | 2 December 2023 SPORTING BENGAL GO TOP OF THE ESSEX SENIOR LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISON AFTER NINE GOAL THRILLER! On a day where the dream of leading the pack could become a reality, the boys really got stuck in to make sure they came out on top with three points. Skipper Sam Edwards set the tone early after bringing down the ball from the air, sent his defender and then finessed into the bottom right to give Bengal the lead. However Ilford hit back quickly which would become a theme in the game. 1-1. Pepple gave Bengal the lead again from a corner but Ilford levelled just before half time with a penalty. Into the second half, the halftime teas were still warm as three quickfire goals hit the back of the net! Alagi fired in first but Ilford equalised from kick off and moments later Pepple latched on to a Keanu ball to give Bengal a 4-3 lead. The striker then bagged his hattrick when he punished a keeper mistake and then megged him to add salt to the wounds. Thats four in two games for Pepple. With Bengal finally taking a two goal lead, it proved to be important as Ilford came back again one more time but the Bengal defence held on to prevent another and finally secured the win! It’s a massive win and moment for the club having gone to the top of the Essex Senior League for the first time in history at this point in the season. A brilliant week for the gaffer Clarky who was also awarded the Essex Senior League manager of the month for November. It’s been a pretty special season so far. But the work doesn’t stop here. We’ll enjoy it for now but we keep going and we will see where the Bengal Express leads to come the end of the season. The journey continues… 🐯🚂

ESL 29/11/23 Sporting Bengal vs Hullbridge Sports

FT: Sporting Bengal 2-0 Hullbridge Sports Essex Senior League | 29 November 2023 On a bitterly cold night in East London, Sporting Bengal turned up the heat on league leaders Tilbury with an impressive display against Hullbridge Sports to send the Tigers into second in the Essex Senior League standings. Bengal welcomed Hullbridge Sports who were also looking to push into the playoff places in a very competitive ESL. Old adversary, Justin Gardner (ex Bethnal Green / Tower Hamlets) was in the opposition dugout which added to the intrigue. Both teams took time to settle as they sought to get to grips with the conditions. Early exchanges were made with the Tigers having the lions share of possession. Midfield maestro Steven Carvell as usual was the architect of most attacks playing trademark balls through for Top Scorer Sheri to latch on to. Sheri came close on a couple of occasions. The Bengal midfield of Carvell, Krans and Edwards were on top now, and with Hullbridge centre back Jay leader coming off due to injury it was only a matter of time until Sporting went ahead. The breakthrough came just before half time when Carvell slipped in Sheri who composed himself and found the back of the net. Bengal started the second half in lively fashion and came close on a few times. Hullbridge did battle and created some half chances. However, the game was effectively over in the 68th minute when debutant Daniel Pepple powered home a Kay Hill pull back to make it 2 nil. Both teams had further chances where both keepers pulled off stunning saves. Sidi in particular reaching high and wide for a freekick save which looked destined for top left bins. A great night for the Tigers, not a happy return for Gardner to Mile End Stadium where for the third time in a row, he would come out on the losing side. Sporting Bengal did the double whilst Gardner was managing tower Hamlets in the Thurlow Nunn South last season. Midway through the season now after 19 games, Sporting Bengal are in second place in the Essex Senior League Premier Division. Next up is another home game against fellow East Londoners, Ilford FC. A win takes Sporting Bengal to the top of the league.

ESL 25/11/23 Buckhurst Hill vs Sporting Bengal

FT: Buckhurst Hill 0-1 Sporting Bengal Following a couple weeks of poor weather and postponed games, we were delighted to be back on the pitch despite the freezing cold conditions as we made the short travel to Buckhurst Hill where we expected to face tricky opponents. Sidi pulled off a couple outstanding saves early on and then Chris tucked in from a Sheri cross to give Bengal the early lead. The big centre forward had a brilliant game as the target man up top. We largely controlled the game and could’ve doubled the lead on a few occasions including a missed a penalty in the second half. Three cleansheets on the bounce keeps us in fourth place as we take on a very strong Hullbridge next at Mile End Stadium.

ESL 14/11/23 Coggeshall Town vs Sporting Bengal

FT: Coggeshall Town 0-4 Sporting Bengal A cold long midweek away trip fighting traffic was all worth it as we put on a dominant performance at Coggeshall. Kay on his return scored the first after heading in at the back post following a Sheri cross. That’s three in three for the flying full back. Dami rounded off a great move from a Yassine pass to double the lead before the break. Sheri dazzled in the box and was taken down. The striker tucked away the penalty to make it 3 and then Alagi found Tanvir who made no mistake in rounding off a brilliant win, 0-4. It really should have been more as we missed chance after chance but delighted with the three points which now takes us up to fourth and only two points off the top. Dreaming

ESL 11/11/23 Sporting Bengal vs Halstead Town

FT: Sporting Bengal 3-0 Halstead Town After the historic win vs Wimbledon in the London Senior Cup, Sporting Bengal were back down to ESL business as they welcomed Halstead Town to Mile End Stadium. Halstead are in mid table and are a solid well organised outfit. This was evident in the first 20 mins as the teams battled for superiority. Halstead edged it whilst neither team created any noteworthy chances. The momentum shifted when Sporting Bengal were awarded a penalty just passed the half hour mark. Steven Carvell played a throughball into the Halstead box, with Tanvir closing in, the defender intercepted, however, he was adjudged to have used his hands, penalty! Sheri stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way to give Bengal the lead. Half time, Sporting Bengal 1-0 Halstead Town. Sporting started the second half with more purpose and pushed 'The Humbugs' back. After a succession of set pieces, the second goal eventually came. Steven Carvell whipped in a teasing corner kick where Yasin Zougui rose majestically to head into the top corner. From here on in it was just a matter of how many Sporting would go on to score, despite Halstead battling, it was inevitable that Bengals would score again. The third goal came on the 65th minute when Christian Gyamfi drove down the right flank and squared a perfect pass for that man Sheri to sweep home his second goal of the game. Despite creating further opportunities, there was no further goals added as the game ended 3 nil to Sporting Bengal. Next up, a midweek visit to Coggeshall Town.

London Senior Cup 01/11/23 Sporting Bengal vs AFC Wimbledon

London Senior Cup | First Round FT: Sporting Bengal 3-1 AFC Wimbledon When Sporting Bengal was created back in 1996, one of the aims was to give talented local youngsters an opportunity to compete at 'semi pro' level. Fast forward to 2023 and Sporting Bengal have just claimed the scalp of professional League Two EFL club, AFC Wimbledon! Despite Storm Ciaran threatening to wreak havoc, the pitch at Mile End Stadium was passed fit and the game was given the go ahead. An amazing night witnessed by a healthy crowd of local fans, ground hoppers and some loyal away support for The Dons, as well as the now infamous Mile End Fox! AFC Wimbledon fielded a young yet talented team, with players like Quain Bartley who appeared several times for the first team. However, under the management of Steve Clark and assistant Matt Guidera, Bengal are formidable opposition at home and from the first minute the intensity and physicality was apparent. As with many games in the past two seasons, Sheri Artmeladze was to prove the match winner. The talented forward showed that he was a big game player with a dazzling display of trickery and finishing, the crowd favourite really turned on the style. Sheri opened the scoring when he picked up the ball on the left edge of the Dons box, dribbled accross the defence and fired into the top left corner! 1-0 Bengal! The second goal was arguably more spectacular, a good team move resulted in Damilola Olusesi clipping a lovely weighted ball over the top finding Sheri who executed an audacious chip from outside the box which sailed elegantly into the back of the net! On the hour mark the irrepressible Sheri completed his stunning hattrick as he ran onto a trademark Steven Carvell through ball and dinked the onrushing goal keeper! Cheeky. The young Dons to their credit continued to battle and got a consolation goal through the very talented Justin Clarke. Watch out for him in the future! Sporting Bengal closed out the game to seal an historic win!

ESL 28/10/23 Sporting Bengal vs Frenford

FT: Sporting Bengal 0-3 Frenford We went up against our fellow promotion winners from the Thurlow Nunn League last season, Frenford FC. We were simply not good enough all over the pitch and Frenford deserved the three points. The less said the better! We’ve got to pick ourselves up and prepare for our massive London Senior Cup match against League Two professional club, AFC Wimbledon, this Wednesday!

FA Vase 21/10/23 Newhaven vs Sporting Bengal

FA VASE FIRST ROUND PROPER FT: Newhaven FC 1-1 (4-2 pens) Sporting Bengal Sporting Bengal endured heartache in the FA Vase as they were knocked out on Penalties away to Newhaven FC The day started early for the squad as they travelled down together to East Sussex on train. The game started very evenly with Bengal matching their opponents in terms of possession and chances created. However, a defensive error midway through the first half lead to the deadlock being broken as the ball was given away deep into Bengal territory resulting in a sliced effort sailing into the top corner off the post. Bengal reacted well with pressure being put on the opposition who to their credit defended well. First half ended 1-0 to the hosts. Sporting Bengal started the second half very strong in effort. Chances were created at both ends as the game became stretched, only good goalkeeping and poor finishing kept the scoreline the same. Bengal finally drew level as a diagonal from Matty Ball from the right hand side was brilliantly volleyed towards goal by Alagi. The Newhaven keeper scrambled to save the effort but Taylor Banks was on hand to turn in the rebound. This was a deserved goal for the outstanding youngster who was Sporting Bengal man of the match. Bengal now looked the more likely to get the winner as the game neared its end. One final chance dropped to talisman Sheri but his effort was saved brilliantly by the Newhaven stopper Ryan Walton. Into the lottery of penalty shootouts! Sporting Bengal skipper Sam Edwards stepped up first but couldn't convert the penalty. Newhaven made no mistakes despite Sidi Haidaira's best efforts. Sheri tucked away his pen but Alagi missed his giving Newhaven the advantage where they converted their final penalty to send the 'The Dockers' into the next round. A great effort from the boys who now focus on the league game against Frenford FC.

ESL 14/10/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs FC Clacton

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-0 Clacton. A hard fought win sees Sporting move into joint second, 3 points behind current league leaders Woodford Town. After the fireworks of midweek against Athletic Newham where Bengal put on a dazzling performance, this was more of a battle as both sides struggled to find any rhythm. The deadlock was eventually broken in added time at the end of the first half. Sam Edwards flicked on a header from a Louie Maxwell throw in and Keanu Hill was quickest to react to slide it into the back of the net! That's two in two for the attacking full back who wanted the ball more than anyone in the box! The second half saw a similar pattern as both teams struggled to gain any real momentum. However, the game changed in Bengal’s favour when a Clacton player was dismissed after receiving two cards in quick succession. Sporting started dominating he ball from this point on and spurned many good opportunities to kill the game off. In the end it was a nervy finish to the game, with tempers flaring, Sporting Bengal managed hold on to claim a valuable three points and a first cleansheet of the season. Next up it’s an away trip in the FA Vase.

ESL 11/10/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs Athletic Newham

FT: Sporting Bengal 3-1 Athletic Newham After the loss over the weekend, Bengal were up against local rivals down the A13 in Athletic Newham who started the day only one point behind. It was a strong Newham team featuring last season’s 40 goal striker, Richard Kone amongst others so Bengal had to be on their game defensively. And that’s exactly what happened as a change in formation and tactics by Sporting Bengal nullified the opportunities for Newham. The backline was immense, led by Louie Maxwell who put on a man of the match performance. Besides the great defensive display by the team, going forward we had two livewire strikers in Chaka and Rian as Sheri missed out with injury. With the strikers keeping the defence busy, the 3-5-2 formation came into effect when Daniel Okah drilled a magnificent ball to right wingback Keanu Hill who brought it down beautifully on the chest and then had the audacity to lob the keeper. Stunning goal to give Bengal the 1-0 lead. The performance didn’t drop at all, and Bengal were rewarded for their defending from the top when Rian’s pressure to win the ball back allowed him to run towards goal. The young attacker held down the finesse trigger and hit a beautiful left footed shot towards goal but unfortunately for him it bounced back off the post! But thankfully Chaka was quickest to react to pounce. 2-0. Newham shocked by the goal were further rattled when Dami won the ball with a strong tackle that displeased Newham but the referee rightfully waved to carry on. Good possession followed which allowed Carvell to pick out Chaka who burst into the left channel. The striker spotted Krans making a darting run towards the edge of the box and played a trivela ball across into his path where Krans took the ball first time on the stride and stroked it in to make it 3-0 at half time! Newham pressured in the second half and got a consolation goal via a penalty but overall, the Bengal defence stood strong and saw out the game to pick up the crucial three points. A brilliant game and performance by Sporting Bengal which keeps them in 4th place in the Essex Senior League.

ESL 07/10/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs Woodford Town FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 0-4 Woodford Town The league leaders were in town at the MES. Going into the game, 5 points separated Woodford in first and Sporting Bengal in fourth. It was a close 25 minutes but the turning point came when an unfortunate own goal gave Woodford the lead. Moments later, they doubled the lead. Unfortunately on this occasion Bengal couldn’t come back as Woodford were very well drilled, organised and efficient at the back. A couple more errors gifted Woodford a 0-4 win. The scoreline didn’t quite reflect the performance but Woodford thoroughly deserved the points. Having played all the top teams in the division now, Woodford were comfortably the strongest of the lot and will take some beating this season. We go again this Wednesday against Athletic Newham at the MES which is arguably an even bigger game for Sporting Bengal.

ESL 30/09/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs White Ensign FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 3-2 White Ensign FC Fun Fact – in the 12 games Sporting Bengal have played this season, the team have come back from behind on 8 occasions! After going down to a two-goal deficit in the first half Vs White Ensign, the script was set for another Bengal comeback! White Ensign took the lead when a header was nodded in at the far post and then doubled it when Sidi’s save fell kindly for the White Ensign forward to tap into an empty net. It was only at that point when Bengal clicked into gear and got started. In first half injury time, Sam picked out Murad on the edge box. The centre back played a great ball towards Carvell who’s delicate touch set Sheri one-on-one. Sheri beat the offside trap and smashed home to cut the deficit in half! 1-2 down at half time. Mile End Stadium has been blessed to see multiple comebacks over the last couple seasons and the whispers amongst the fans had started again at the break. The belief was there. Sporting Bengal were indeed going to come back once again. It felt like it was just a matter of time. Midway through the second half, Carvell found Salim down the right wing with a delightful diagonal ball. The winger burst into the box and cut it back for Sheri to fire in for his brace! 2-2. It was all Bengal at this point, searching for that winner. With ten minutes left on the clock, it was the skipper and the other playmaker in the team, Sam, who played a magnificent ball once again to Salim who on this occasion took his time, approached the box, and picked out Sheri. Sheri played a quick one two with substitute Taylor who found himself in the box and then Sheri knocked it past the keeper to complete a quite remarkable hattrick and another comeback for Sporting Bengal! 3-2. The win keeps Sporting Bengal in joint second place. The next one is a big one. It’s at Mile End Stadium. And it’s against the league leaders, Woodford Town. Let’s all get down to the MES for what should be the game of the season!

ESL 16/09/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs Little Oakley FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 2-1 Little Oakley The tenth league game of the season saw Bengal up against 6th place Oakley who were only 4 points behind with 2 games in hand. It was expected to be a difficult one at the MES and that’s exactly what it was, especially with key first team players missing such as Murad, Keanu, Ant, Sam and Liam. Both teams missed chances in the first half but in injury time, skipper for the day, Carvell, whipped in a teasing cross from a corner which was headed in by Sheri Artmeladze! Five minutes after the restart, keeper Sidi cleared a ball which was stopped with his hand by Oakley’s Harry Mann and then knocked in to an empty net! Astonishingly, none of the officials managed to see the clear handball. 1-1 The game was frustrating for both teams as the referee was very busy unnecessarily where he could’ve let a lot go. It was looking to end in a stalemate but then Carvell played a teasing diagonal ball from left to right towards Sheri who expertly took it down on his chest to beat the defender and then buried home the chance to give Bengal a 2-1 lead! Fantastic goal and it was that Carvell Sheri combo that unlocked Oakley again. Sheri had chances to get a hattrick but was denied. Fortunately for Bengal the defence held strong for the remaining minutes to take home all the points! The huge win keeps Bengal in 4th place but closes the gap to the top. Next game in 2 weeks so a well deserved break to rest up.

ESL 13/09/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs Takeley FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 5-1 Takeley After three consecutive draws, Bengal went into the game against Takeley looking for a much-needed win to continue pushing the teams at the top. Early in the game, Sheri dazzled into the box, weaving in and out making it dangerous for defenders to put in a tackle. After beating the defence, Sheri cut across the box where Sam Edwards pounced on Takeley’s inability to clear the danger. Sam smashed it in to make it 1-0. The lead didn’t last long as Takeley headed in the equaliser only two minutes later. Chaka Barnett was on the receiving end next of another Sheri dribble as the winger tucked home to retake the lead for Bengal. Chaka was alert for the next opportunity as Sidi’s long ball was challenged by Rian. Chaka one step ahead latched on to round the keeper and make it 3-1 at half time. More of the same was the message at the break and that’s exactly what we got when Chaka floated one over the defence out to the right wing where Sheri beat the offside trap to meet the ball. As the ball bounced, Sheri hit an audacious volley from a tight angle over the keeper and into the net! A stunning finish. 4-1. Into injury time, Modou picked out Salim who sent his marker to the shops and created huge space for Sam who took a touch to set and then fired a right foot bullet into the top left corner! Outrageous finish from the skipper. Great performance all over the pitch as Bengal move into fourth in the league.

ESL 09/09/23 - Stanway Rovers vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Stanway Rovers 1-1 Sporting Bengal Having beaten their bitter rivals Stanway Pegasus in the Playoff Final last season, Stanway Rovers welcomed Sporting Bengal with open arms at the Hawthorns in Colchester. But it was straight down to business when the whistle blew. We squandered an early one on one chance through Rian and then Murad’s header was stopped point blank by the Rovers keeper. It was just a matter of time until Bengal got punished and that’s exactly what happened when Freddy Tandon, ex Sporting Bengal captain, got on the of end of a corner to give Rovers the lead! The centre half was having a good game leading from the back. When Rovers did attack, they were stopped by Sidi Haidara who made 3 brilliant saves! Into the second half, Bengal looked to stage another comeback but were missing chance after chance. In the hottest day of the year, it was difficult but the never say die attitude continued as Keanu was fouled in the box by Tandon and Bengal were awarded a penalty. Up stepped Sheri who tucked it away in the bottom left corner with 5 minutes to go. It was a very eventful last few minutes as both teams had chances as the game was end to end. But neither team could find the winning goal and the points were shared.

ESL 06/09/23 - Sporting Bengal United vs West Essex FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-1 West Essex Back under the lights at the MES, Sporting Bengal in fourth were up against West Essex who came into the game unbeaten and third in the Essex Senior League. The first half saw Bengal relentlessly pressing forward, controlling possession, and creating numerous scoring opportunities. However, against the run of play, West Essex managed to break the deadlock just moments before the halftime whistle. It was a clinical strike that caught the Sporting Bengal defence off-guard, sending the visiting fans into jubilation. The second half witnessed Sporting Bengal intensify their efforts, seeking to restore parity. Their persistence finally paid off in the dying moments of injury time when the returning hero, Chaka Barnett, seized the moment. Liam won the header to flick on to Sheri who burst past his man to cut back for Chaka. Barnett exhibited composure and finesse as he found the bottom left corner, igniting wild celebrations amongst the home supporters. As the final whistle blew, both teams left the field with one point to show for their efforts. Sporting Bengal showcased their dominance throughout the match, but West Essex's resilient defence and opportunistic first-half strike prevented them from securing a victory. The Mile End Stadium bore witness to a dramatic contest that showcased the unpredictable nature of football. Sporting Bengal's fans left with mixed emotions, relieved to see their team salvage a point but longing for more after a spirited performance. Meanwhile, West Essex celebrated their disciplined display and valuable point earned on the road. Next up, Stanway away!

ESL 02/09/23 - Romford FC vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Romford 3-3 Sporting Bengal Fourth in the league, Sporting faced league leaders & favourites, Romford. Romford took the lead after the referee overruled the assistants offside flag! Steven Carvell was presented with a free kick when Taylor was bundled over. The skipper's strike was too powerful for the keeper who ended up fumbling it into the back of the net! 1-1. But a minute later, a misplaced back pass was pounced on and buried! 2-1 Romford, all the hard work undone. Fighting back is part of the DNA at Sporting Bengal and the continued pressure allowed Salim to drive into the box where he was taken out! Penalty! Sheri tucked away, 2-2. Romford were denied by world class goalkeeping from our #1, Sidi. Into the second half, Carvell picked out Sheri who collided with his marker but the advantage was presented to Rian on the left who drove towards the box and fired across where Salim delicately touched it beyond the keeper! Stunning goal. 2-3 Bengal. Romford pressure pinned Bengal back and then got the luck they needed when it appeared the ball had gone out but was missed by the officials. The cutback was scored. 3-3. The refereeing was questionable and it didn't get much easier for the referees when it appeared a Romford player was brought down in the box with a tackle. The assistant flagged for a pen, but the ref saw the ball was won first & waved play on. With Bengal carrying as instructed, the Romford bench screamed. On the counter, Dami was through on goal and bizarrely, the referee stopped the game mid attack! The ref spoke to his assistant and the decision was no penalty. Questions were raised on why he decided to stop the play! Into injury time, after good link up play by Carvell & Salim, Kay found himself free in the box with just the keeper in sight! With the Bengal fans ready to celebrate, the keeper made a stunning save! Wow. If that wasn't enough drama, a Romford counter saw the shot fired over! Full time. Great game of football filled with controversy and goals!

ESL 28/08/23 - Barking FC vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Barking 1-3 Sporting Bengal After two weeks off, we were back in action away to Barking FC on Bank Holiday Monday. Bengal started strongly and created an early chance when Dami found debutant Rian on the left wing with a beautiful diagonal but the winger unluckily hit the post! Would’ve been the best start for the birthday boy! Opportunity after opportunity followed but they were wasted. Sporting could’ve had a few more runs at goal had it not been for some curious officiating by the assistant referee. The missed opportunities and decisions almost cost Sporting as Barking created a rare chance when a point blank header was saved spectacularly by Sidi Haidara in the Bengal goal. World class! Just before the half time break, Dami won the ball in his own half and played a great ball to Carvell who was clear through on goal. The playmaker kept his cool and tucked it beyond the keeper to give Bengal the lead at the break! Into the second half, Murad and the defence kept Barking quiet from mounting any real pressure. In the 74th minute, Sheri was put through on goal but was taken down by the last man! Red card for Barking. Carvell stepped up for the free kick on the edge of the box and hit a sublime clever free kick low and hard under the wall to completely baffle the Barking goalkeeper! Carvell’s on fire, your defence is terrified! Simply too good from the Bengal #10 to double the lead. The game was wrapped up a minute later when Salim picked up the ball and ran at the Barking defence. The winger picked out Sheri who dribbled into the box, sent his marker wobbling left right left right and fired into the bottom left corner! 0-3 Sporting Bengal. In injury time, Barking grabbed a consolation from the penalty spot but the game ended 1-3 and a massive three points for Sporting Bengal which takes us up to fourth in the Essex Senior Premier Division. Next up is an away trip to the league leaders, Romford FC, which will take place at the same ground. Massive game!

ESL 15/08/23 - Tilbury FC vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Tilbury 3-1 Sporting Bengal In what was a tough away fixture, we settled pretty well in the first half and was rewarded with a brilliant goal when right back Keanu won the ball back in the Tilbury half, went past the defender and fired a long range drive into the bottom left corner from the edge of the box! 0-1 lead at the break. Sporting started the second half well, looking comfortable in possession. But in the space of a couple minutes, the goalscorer picked up two yellows just on the hour mark and was sent off! Both decisions were pretty contentious! Going down to ten men changed the game completely. Tilbury stepped up a gear and with a man advantage, took full control of the game and scored three quick goals! 3-1 FT. Unfortunately the defeat was the first of the season and ends our record unbeaten run of 18 games. It’s been a remarkable run. Next game on Wednesday at Mile End Stadium!

ESL 12/08/23 - Sporting Bengal United Vs Buckhurst Hill FC

FT: Sporting Bengal 1-1 Buckhurst Hill A very poor performance way below our standards in the first half meant that we went into half time 1-0 down. Liam came on for the second half and brought us energy and fight up the pitch. We missed chance after chance but eventually and inevitably in injury time, a Carvell corner wasn’t dealt with and the resulting clearance fell to left back Ted Buchanan who hit across the box and into the bottom right corner for the equaliser! We could’ve secured the three points seconds later but Sam’s volley went just wide! Disappointed with the result but under the games circumstances, relieved to come away with a point and still unbeaten in the league. That’s five games in a row where we’ve come from behind to get a result. Will need to get a medical check up soon at this rate 😫 7 points in 3 games. Up next is Tilbury away on Tuesday.

FA CUP REPLAY 08/08/23: Stansfeld FC Vs Sporting Bengal United

EMIRATES FA CUP EXTRA PRELIMINARY ROUND REPLAY FT: Stansfeld 1-1 Sporting Bengal Pens 6-5 After the eight-goal thriller at Mile End Stadium on Saturday, it was time to go again in a Replay away at Stansfeld. The first half was much more quieter in contrast to the first game but Stansfeld did take the lead midway through the second half. Having missed chance after chance, it seemed as though Sporting wouldn't find a way back this time. But into the ninth minute of injury time, Alagi found the back of the net to take it to extra time! Unbelievable as we found another equaliser in stoppage time! With both teams leggy in extra time, it went down to a Penalty Shootout. Unfortunately, that's where our FA Cup dream ended as Stansfeld won 6-5 in the shootout! It was a tough one to take having been the better team but an incredible effort to keep coming back in both ties and despite being a short journey in the FA Cup this season, it sure has given us a lot of memories! We concentrate our efforts back on the league this Saturday where we will look to make it 3 out of 3 and continue our 100% record so far. Come down to Mile End Stadium! It’s likely to be another memorable one.

FA CUP 05/08/23: Sporting Bengal United vs Stansfeld FC

EMIRATES FA CUP: Sporting Bengal 4-4 Stansfeld SBU Goals: Matthew Ball 13, Sam Edwards 16, Kachi Yassine 62, 90+4 Stansfeld Goals: Tommy Whitnell 1, 9 Dan Parkinson 11, 65 Attendance: 102
Another game, another comeback! If you want entertainment you need to come to a Sporting Bengal game. We’ve made a habit of coming back and this game was no different. Goals, red cards, injury time drama, this game had the lot. The scene was set at Mile End Stadium for a big game, a good crowd were in, fuelled by the somosas & pakoras that were being sold at the Tuck Shop. It was Stansfeld that started the brighter. So much so that they raced into a 3 nil lead within the first 11 minutes, a combination of poor defending and clinical finishing gave the South London outfit a dream start. Mile End was stunned, surely the 'Tigers' would show some heart and desire at home. The fightback was almost immediate as Mathew Ball nodded in from a Steven Carvell set piece to pull a goal back. Sam Edwards was on hand a couple of minutes later to further reduce the deficit, what a crazy 20 minutes! The crowd had certainly got their monies worth. 3-2 to Stansfeld at HT, Sporting still had work to do! The goal came when Sporting equalised on the hour mark with a poachers finish from Yassine who followed in a speculative shot from Liam to slot home. 3-3, surely the momentum was with the home side? Another twist! Just as Sporting looked to gain the ascendancy, Stansfeld were awarded a penalty. Despite keeper Sidi Haidara’s impressive record, Stansfeld went ahead once again. In the aftermath a Stansfeld player was involved in a melee and saw red, away team now down to 10. Sporting now ratcheted up the pressure. Injury time approached, and it seemed Stansfeld had done enough to hold on. However, Sporting have that never say die spirit! With 94 minutes on the clock, Kachi Yassine picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box, nutmegged his defender, and fired into the top corner with a rocket! Cue ecstatic celebrations from the players and fans a like, Sporting had rescued another game in the dying seconds! Sporting now travel down to Chislehurst on Tuesday for a replay!

ESL 31/07/23 - Ilford FC Vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Ilford 2-4 Sporting Bengal The fixture schedule is rough! 48 hours after beating Great Wakering away from home in the first game, we were up against Ilford FC on the road – albeit a lot closer to home this time! Nevertheless, it was going to be another tough game. Bengals dominated the majority of the first half and looked destined to score when a three on one attack was halted when it appeared the Ilford defender had clattered into Sheri in the box. Chance squandered. No penalty given. It was the turning point in the half. Within the next minutes, Ilford punished Bengals and went 2-0 up out of nowhere. The packed Cricklefield Stadium erupted! The half time break was messy. Frustration. Anger. Fire. The second half would either get ugly, or the fans in attendance would really get their monies worth! Within 3 minutes, Modou found Sheri with a great ball. The winger’s first touch followed by a thunderous strike was too much to handle! 2-1, game on! The momentum was in Bengals favour, but the Ilford fans were still confident in their team, dismissing Bengals fans as crazy when suggested they would come back to win. Little did they know? 56 mins, midfielder Dami played in substitute Elliot who pressed the keeper into an error to make it 2-2! Three minutes later, Dami showed his class again as he won the ball back, drove towards the box, shimmied left past the defender, and fired across a low driven beauty into the right corner! A stunning goal by the MOTM to complete a remarkable 14 minutes comeback! 2-3 Murad then played a long ball towards Alagi, the winger knocked it down towards the path of Sheri who made a good run past his marker. The Georgian then calmly slotted in past the keeper to make it 4-2 after 61 mins! Cricklefield was silenced. Jaws dropped. A blistering comeback by Bengals! Unbelievable. Another three points secured which puts Bengals top of the Essex Senior League! @essexsenior The next game is massive. It’s the Emirates FA Cup at Mile End Stadium! We urge all fans to come down to support. This team is really developing into a special one this season with a lot of quality on show. Miss it, Miss out!

ESL 29/07/23 - Great Wakering Rovers Vs Sporting Bengal United

FT: Great Wakering Rovers 1-2 Sporting Bengal In our first game of the season back in the Essex Senior League, we were up against Great Wakering away who played Step 4 football last season. This was a tough opening fixture to the season. In the first 20 seconds we conceded a penalty but Sidi Haidara pulled off a spectacular save to his left. With plenty of opportunities being created without many chances at goal, the half ended 0-0. However, we gave away another penalty straight after the restart. Once again, Sidi Haidara stood tall in goal and pulled off a remarkable save! This time down to his bottom right. Unfortunately the keepers heroics couldn’t continue as a powerful free kick went in off the post after Sidi got a hand on it. 1-0 down. On came Sherri off the bench having nursed an injury recently. The Georgian immediately got into the game, causing havoc down the wings. In the 79th minute, Alagi found Sheri on the run who took it past his man on his first touch and then shimmied past two more and fired a thunderous strike into the back of the net! 1-1 With the momentum in Bengals favour, we kept attacking in search for the winner. Into the fourth minute of stoppage time, Alagi was brought down in the box having looked destined to score. Clear penalty. New Club Captain, Sam Edwards, stepped up to take the penalty but was saved. Thankfully the referee had spotted the keeper had stolen a few yards off his line and a retake was the right decision. This time it was Sheri who stepped up to take the penalty, full of confidence. Sheri smashed it into the roof of the net to secure three massive points in the Essex Senior League!!