Five-star display gets Sporting Hackney off to winning start

The latest football news (pic: David Davies/PA)

The latest football news (pic: David Davies/PA) - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Middlesex County Premier League: Cricklewood Wanderers 0 Sporting Hackney 5

An understrength Sporting Hackney got their 2018/9 Middlesex County Premier League campaign off to a flying start with a comprehensive 5-0 victory away at Cricklewood Wanderers on Saturday, the first of three consecutive fixtures on the road.

Young forwards Joel Akuwudike and Ritchie Palata scored their first senior goals for the Parrots, who led 4-0 at half time, leaving manager Pete Harrington delighted with the season’s opening performance.

“With seven first team players injured or unavailable, it showed we have a strong squad to compete this season,” Harrington said.

Hackney began in a defensive 5-4-1 formation, but soon found themselves in front after Akuwundike latched on to a smart cross from the dangerous Walé Adedeji on the left wing.

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Central midfielder Jordan Brown – a reassuring presence alongside Will Cooper – soon added another after a neat exchange with striker Jon Green.

Green then netted a spectacular third, lobbing Cricklewood’s keeper with an overhead kick from 12-yards.

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Man of the match Cooper then headed in a wicked Dan Portsmouth set piece from close range to leave the result in little doubt at the interval.

Cricklewood rallied to make for a more competitive second half but couldn’t break down Hackney’s defence as Josh Anderson put in a strong performance in an unfamiliar role.

And the chances kept coming for the Parrots. Ritchie Palata, who might have scored earlier, finally sealed the win with clever finish over the keeper from right-back Joe Tousent’s through ball.

The Parrots will look to build on their impressive start this weekend as they travel to Pitshanger Dynamo, who also won their opening fixture.

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