Champions Poppies 2-1 winners at home to Bedworth Utd

Bedworth UtdKettering Town

Kettering Town 2
Sandy 27
Solkhon 38

Bedworth Utd 1
Creaney 52

Southern League Division One Central Champions Kettering Town take on another play-off hopeful on Saturday when they host Bedworth Utd at Latimer Park in their final home game of the season. Bedworth moved into the top five with a victory last Saturday as play-off rivals Barton Rovers were beaten by the Poppies and have a game in hand so it wouldn’t be too much of a disaster if they fail to beat Kettering. Royston have cemented their play-off spot and Aylesbury are all but mathematically in the play-offs. Rugby are occupying the final play-off spot but cannot afford to slip up in their final two fixtures as they lost last week. North Greenford Utd and AFC Hayes occupy the bottom two places and have both been relegated.

The match gets underway in a party atmosphere at a windy Latimer Road with Kettering in their familiar home strip of red and black and Bedworth in all green. The visitors have started the stronger but both teams have already had half-chances and it looks to be shaping into a lively encounter in the early stages. A lofted through ball sees the defender slip but the bobbly pitch stops Sandy getting in the early shot and his effort is charged down.

Back to back corners for Kettering but easily cleared by the Bedworth defence. A lot of bounce in this hard, sometimes uneven pitch making it difficult to bring the ball down and control is lacking in the build up play. Kettering fail to clear and a good cross in is narrowly headed wide of Knight’s far post. Good work by Ogbonna and Kettering win another corner, swung into the area but again no one gets a touch on the inviting opportunity although its looking a lot better for Poppies after 25 mins.

Goal!GOAL: Good work again by Ogbonna as he plays in Elliot Sandy who almost goes down under a challenge but just manages to stab the ball into the corner of the net. Its been coming for awhile now and another good spell of build up play sees a clinical finish from Poppies striker Sandy.

Goal!GOAL: Ogbonna finds Kinniburgh out wide and the cross in is put behind for another Kettering corner. The ball is swung in and keeper Hinds tips it off a Poppies striker and it rebounds just past the post. Kettering really playing well at the moment as a free-kick is swung in by Jepson from the right, a mad scramble ensues in the six-yard area and after several attempts to clear off the line its finally smashed home by Brett Solkhon. Kettering are 2-0 up on 38 minutes.

Half-time:   Kettering Town 2   Bedworth Utd 0

Goal!GOAL: Hull replaced by Robinson at the break. The second-half gets underway and the visitors needing to try and get something out of this one to bolster their play-off chances will press for an opening. Another early change for Kettering as Mulligan goes off to be replaced by Kolodynski. The ball is played into the Poppies area and a slow reaction by the defence as its poked home by Dan Creaney to pull a goal back for Bedworth.

Knight rounded by Bedworth striker and its cleared off the line by Lee for Kettering. A double substitution for the visitors Chad Degville-Evans and Ben Stead off, Aaron Bains and Alex Naughton on as Bedworth push for an equalizer. Kettering have regained some composure after conceding that early second-half goal as Bedworth commit men forward on the break and Knight concedes a corner, but claims well as the ball is swung into the area.

Plenty of good build up play but Kettering just lacking a good final ball and finish at the moment. Andy Hall is booked by the referee for a foul. The visitors showing a little fight as a shot flies just wide of Knights upright. Hall chopped down and Chris Tunlin is shown the yellow card for Bedworth. Hall is replaced by Richard-Noel for the final 10 minutes or so. Jepson’s free kick is high and wide of the target. Bedworth’s Westwood is booked for dissent.

Bedworth almost pulled level as a shot just flies past the upright as Knight watches on. The visitors committing a lot of players forward on the attack trying for at least a point. Knight makes a good save as we head into stoppage time. A shot goes high and wide of the Poppies goal as the last few seconds tick away and Kettering are holding onto their slender lead. There goes the final whistle and Kettering finish their home fixtures with a 2-1 victory over Bedworth and are presented with the championship trophy. The Poppies have one game left away to Chalfont St Peter before the championship game at Merthyr Town on 2nd May.

Att: 1,003

Kettering Town: Knight, Hull, Kinniburgh, Gooding, Solkhon, Lee, Hall, Jepson, Mulligan, Sandy, Ogbonna. Subs: Kolodynski, Robinson, Richard-Noel, Clifton, McAlindon.

Bedworth Utd:

News

Bukasa and Curtis join Eagles »

Jonathon Bukasa recently joined Bedford Town to get more playing time and was swiftly followed by Joe Curtis

Players in and out at Kettering » Welcome to 21 year old Joe Curtis as he joins the Poppies. Curtis started at Southampton before suffering a ligament injury and recently played for Brackley Town and Stamford.

Poppies sign striker Mulligan » From the official website, "We have today signed experienced utility player, Gary Mulligan from Dunstable Town.

Hereford Utd wound up in High Court »

Hereford Utd Football Club were wound up in the High Court after the current owner turned up late for a the hearing and failed to convince the judge he had sufficient funds in the bank to cover the club's debts.

Two new arrivals at the Poppies »

Kettering have recently signed top striker Dave Kolodynski from Rugby Town and goalkeeper Richard Knight from Cambridge City.

Matches

Champions Poppies 2-1 winners at home to Bedworth Utd »

Bedworth UtdKettering Town

Kettering Town 2
Sandy 27
Solkhon 38

Bedworth Utd 1
Creaney 52

Kinniburgh double earns Poppies comfortable 2-0 win away to Barton Rovers »

Kettering TownBarton Rovers

Barton Rovers 0

Kettering Town 2
Kinninburgh 48, 77

Poppies beaten 3-0 away to Rugby Town – but crowned Champions! »

Kettering TownRugby Town

Rugby Town 3
Gregory 26
Marsden 55
Rankin 79

Kettering Town 0

Terrace Talk

Hereford Utd wound up in High Court »

Hereford Utd Football Club were wound up in the High Court after the current owner turned up late for a the hearing and failed to convince the judge he had sufficient funds in the bank to cover the club's debts.

Coventry City following a similar path to the Poppies »

Coventry City follow in the footsteps of the Poppies as they prepare to leave their current landlords at Ricoh Arena and groundshare at Sixfields, home of Northampton Town ..

Portsmouth suffer a similar fate to Kettering »

Pompey's administrator Trevor Birch promptly issued a statement branding the League's decision "very harsh" and hopes it can be reversed. He said: "We are extremely disappointed that the Football League has decided to impose yet another penalty on the club.