By pitchside reporter Andy Mason
Sheppey United 3 Ramsgate 3
20, 37 Danny Leonard 9 Taofiq Olomowewe
44 Jake Embery 72 Jahmal Howlett-Mundle
80 Rowan Liburd
A warm welcome on a chilly day at the Total Power Stadium Holm Park home of our host Sheppey United the “Ites”. Although the weather conditions were probably ideal for football a little dampness around and a swirly wind, making the 3G pitch nice and skiddy.
We were under way with Rams attacking the Queenborough Road end of this new development, with a fairly good crowd anticipating a good game as table topping Rams faced play off chasing Ites.
3rd minute and Ites got first attempt of the game on goal as Bexon was forced to push the shot out for a corner ball over and Rams conceded another corner, Ites set out their stall of attack.
Rams struggled to get on the ball at the start, but in the 5th Jadama broke up play, laying the ball for Carvalho, getting the ball out from under his feet and shooting over Prall’s bar. Rams put together another attack, Prescott’s shot deflected out for a corner, the ball cames over and Olomowewe rose and heads home in the 9th minute.
Jadama went down in the box as Gale went into the back of him. The ref waved away penalty appeals but did not book Jadama as there was contact but in his view not enough to award Rams a penalty.
Rams work rate was really high, hustling every inch of the pitch. I doubted they would be able to keep that work rate up for the full match.
Ites played a long ball forward McIntyre missed the opportunity to clear and Leonard pounced to slot the ball past Bexon to level on 20 minutes.
Ites were moving much quicker and passing and moving into spaces in the midfield. Jadama and Paxman were doing a lot of chasing and closing in midfield.
Midway through the first half both teams looked as if they needed a rest and the game lulled after the frantic start.
The 33rd and Rams picked up the pace. Jadama broke through down the right, a low hard cross collected well by Prall as Carvalho rushed in.
37th and Rams defence seemed non-existent as a long ball down the left again iwa missed at the back & Leonard fired home to make Rams pay for some very poor defending having pushed too many men forward.
The 43rd and Ites looking to extend their lead played a ball down Rams left, McIntyre outpaced, the ball crossed over for an easy header for Embury to nod home unchallenged.
The 45th and a contentious moment as Prescott was brought down by Allsopp. The ref awarded Rams the free kick but Prescott retaliated, putting his head against Allsopp. The ref had no option but to Red card Prescott & book Allsopp. Not quite the last action of an eventful half, right on the stroke of half time a golden opportunity for Liburd, his header low to Prall’s left is scooped away.
Rams half time sub off Carvalho & McIntyre for Olopade & Carlse (debut).
The 51st and Rams indirect free kick in the box as Prall picked up a back pass with Miller rushing in, Paxman tapped the ball and Miller shot over. The 54th and Miller put in again totally on his own, a poor touch gifts the ball to Prall.
Ites were still having joy down Rams left as Allsopp broke free, crossed into the box but luckily for Rams no attackers were there.
59th and Jadama went down on the edge of the box. This time the Ref did see it and issued a yellow card to the hard-working midfielder.
Ites came back into the game as they pressed again. The 63rd and a corner is headed just wide. The 66th and Leonard hit the side netting after beating the defender.
71st and Jadama clattered again, this time quick thinking by the Rams as the free kick was played forward to a sprinting Howlett-Mundle to fire home a low power shot to pull one back for the Rams 3 – 2.
Carlse was certainly making a difference for the Rams powering up and down the left side, all set for a grandstand finish. The 80th and the ball was played across to Liburd all of 25 yards out he had no other thought than to shoot a low skimming power strike beating Prall low to his right post to level for the 10 man Rams. Liburd was subbed straight after and Rowland entered the fray.
Rams gave away a late free kick and the supporters were thinking of the last minutes of the match, this time they held out as the ball was blasted high and wide, full time 3 – 3.
Rams delighted with a cracking second half performance down to 10 men and two goals behind, they remain top of the table .
RFSA Ram of the Match:
Ites: 1Aiden Prall, 3Sam Gale, 4Olamilekan Majoyegbe, 11Jake Embery, 7Danny Leonard, 14Mamadou Diallo, 10Eddie Allsopp , 16Bradley Schafer , 17Jack Midson, 18Frankie Del Morgan, 20Josh Wisson
Subs: 2Daniel Birch, 5Jonathan Richardson, 19Teddy McIntyre, 12Bailey Catherick, 15Luke Frost
Rams: 1Josh Bexon, 2Jerald Aboagye, 3Jahmal Howlett-Mundle, 8Lee Prescott, 16Taofiq Olomowewe, 10Ashley Miller, 11Gil Carvalho, 12Jack Paxman, 14Rowan Liburd, 19Jake McIntyre, 20Tijan Jadama
Subs 6Denzelle Olopade, 5Callum Emptage, 9Kane Rowland, 15Thomas Carlse, 18Theo Osinfolarin
Ram of the match: Tijan Jadama
Ramsgate next in Action:
25Feb Home VCD Athletic 3pm
04Mar Away Lancing 3pm
11Mar Home East Grinstead Town 3pm