Search

Bostik Premier: Keith Rowland pleased overall with Wingate & Finchley’s season after finishing with Harlow Town win

PUBLISHED: 17:00 01 May 2018

Wingate & Finchley manager Keith Rowland (left) alongside assistant manager Ritchie Graham (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

Wingate & Finchley manager Keith Rowland (left) alongside assistant manager Ritchie Graham (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

©TGS Photo tgsphoto.co.uk +44 1376 553468

The former Queens Park Rangers and West Ham United footballer has delivered another impressive campaign for the Blues

Wingate & Finchley players celebrate after Sean Cronin scores a late winner at Harlow Town (pic: George Sessions).Wingate & Finchley players celebrate after Sean Cronin scores a late winner at Harlow Town (pic: George Sessions).

Keith Rowland praised his youthful Wingate & Finchley team for standing up to the challenge imposed on them by Harlow Town on the final day of the Bostik Premier season.

A late penalty from Sean Cronin earned the Blues all three points in Essex following a 1-0 victory.

It saw them finish the campaign with a five-match unbeaten run and Rowland hailed the effort of his young side, which included a number of current under-23 players.

He said: “I’m pleased. It is a clean sheet away from home. We came here last season and knew the second balls were priority.

“The ball in the air we might not win, but I made sure the players knew the physicality of the game because a lot of teams come here and get drawn in by the pitch and think it will be a passing game, but it is not.

“Harlow are quite direct and work off seconds and they are a set-piece team and I haven’t got a big group as it is, but we relied on working off the seconds.

“If you can’t win the first, win the second and if the second ball can be won then the third becomes a possession ball and we did that terrifically well in the first half and got a grip of the game, but the half came too early for us.

“After that we came out for the second half and never really got going again, but we batted away and stood up to the challenge.”

Having withstood a slight storm from Harlow after the restart, Wingate managed to take all three points when Afolabi Obafemi was brought down inside the penalty area by Ibrahima Sonko.

Centre back Cronin stepped up and sent David Hughes the wrong way to secure a 10th-placed finish for the Maurice Rebak Stadium club.

Rowland declared himself happy with their final placing in the table – considering the age of the squad and the club’s financial resources compared to others in the division.

Wingate had reached the play-offs last season, but couldn’t replicate that achievement this time around although their points total of 75 from the 2016/17 campaign would have only been enough for eight in the table this term.

“Like I have been saying for the last few weeks, I’ve got four people aged 18 or under in the team, which is terrific for them,” said Rowland.

“I am not saying these young lads are there, they have a long way to go, but what I’ve asked them to do and what they’ve done over the last few weeks and what the squad have done is finish the season off well and to come ninth is a terrific achievement.

“What we did last season was make the play-offs with 75 points, so the league was more even – this time around I think it is 79 for fifth and fourth was 85.

“We got close late March and we just couldn’t keep up the pace, but with a bit more luck over the last few weeks and with some referee decisions going our way, like when we had two players sent off in two different games, we might have done it.

“The last week was tough for us. We went to Billericay Town (2-2), Lowestoft Town (1-1) and played Dorking Wanderers twice (2-2 and 2-0 home win).

“We had three draws and a win, it easily could have three wins and a draw and we would have come eighth with that, so it just goes to show the fine lines, but I am pleased overall.”

Related articles

Latest Hampstead & Highgate Sports News

16:00

Teenager in squad alongside some of country’s brightest talents

Next up for the Tottenham Hotspur Ladies is a home clash with Millwall Lionesses this weekend

12:00

Round four to take place in London in December

A look at how some of Tottenham Hotspur’s players fared while on international duty

10:30

Saracens centre Alex Lozowski has been banned for two weeks for entering a ruck dangerously — but will be free to feature in England’s autumn Test campaign.

10:00

CSS League Challenge Cup first round: Metropolitan Police 1 (Gilbert 71) Hendon 0

14:12

The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) has submitted its planning application to Westminster City Council to redevelop the historic Compton and Edrich stands at Lord’s Cricket Ground.

Bostik Premier: Burgess Hill Town 0 Wingate & Finchley 1

PROMOTED CONTENT

Looking to get your child interested in a sport? Allianz Park, home to rugby union team Saracens, welcomes people of all ages to join their family of supporters and discover how their core values Honesty, Discipline, Humility and Work Rate underpin everything they do off and on the pitch.

As part of a major refurb, the London Marriott Hotel Maida Vale has renamed its three new-look function rooms to reflect the geography and rich history of the area. The largest, perfect for weddings and large meetings, is named after a Hampstead subterranean river, The Westbourne.

Londoners seeking high quality houses for sale within easy commuting distance of the capital are being advised to look north to St Albans’ prestigious Gabriel Square development.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read Hampstead & Highgate sport

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now