1 December 2023
Bromley hosted Premier League neighbours Crystal Palace to the Westminster Waste Stadium, with the visitors fielding a side largely made up of U23s players on Tuesday evening.
The home sides started the brighter on what was a humid evening in BR2. Neil Smiths men lined up in an attacking 3-5-2 formation with Dan Johnson finding real joy down the left flank. And his attacking runs provided the first in-roads past the Eagles’ defence. He crossed into the box and George Porter was just inches away from nothing Bromley’s opener inside 6 minutes.
‘DJ’ as he’s commonly referred to by his team-mates created the Ravens’ second chance of the evening. He looped the ball into the box but Bugiel was adjudged to have caught offside, and that would set the tone for much of Bromley’s forward attacks for the remainder of the half.
The young Eagles created a handful of chances themselves, first through Daly and then Mitchell, but both would see their efforts go well wide of Gregory’s goal.
When Bromley weren’t caught offside, it would be a handball that would deny them a goal. A superb direct pass from Roger Johnson found George Porter splitting the Eagles defence. He took the ball down on his chest but had it roll of his arm before lobbing over Dion-Curtis Henry into the goal. But, correctly, the referee disallowed the goal for the handball.
Bromley were first out onto the pitch after the break and that certainly signaled their intent in the second half. The Eagles were immediately put under pressure from the restart and an early chance fell Bromley’s way. Bobby-Joe Taylor’s energetic pressing opened up an opportunity to strike on goal. His effort had plenty of venom behind it, but just lacked the direction as Henry watched it fly over his crossbar.
The Ravens would go close in similar fashion just moments later. Taylor turned the provider this time, set up Higgs who hit an almost replica effort of his earlier effort. Henry once more watched the ball over his crossbar but Bromley were unquestionably on top at this stage.
Bromley would eventually have the ball in the back of the net, but once again, an offside call would rule them out. The ball fell to Okoye 6-yards out and he finished well into the top corner, but the assistant referee ruled out the goal. The home side would finally have goal that would stand, and that came on 72 minutes. A cross was played in from the right by Frankie Raymond, the goalkeeper didn’t come for the cross and the ball found it’s way across the line thanks to an own goal by Sean Robertson.
The game then rather fizzled out following a vast amount of substitutions but Neil Smith can take a number of positives from the evening and look to try out further changes in the remaining pre-season fixtures.
Bromley next play host to Dulwich Hamlet in match dedicated to the memory of Glyn Beverly which is to take place this Saturday 21st July, kick off 3pm.
Bromley XI: Gregory, Adebayo-Rowling, R. Johnson (Meekums 41′), Holland (c) (Goodman 76′), Okoye, D. Johnson, Raymond (Enver 76′), Higgs, Taylor (De Silva 61′), Porter, Bugiel (O’Halloran 80′).
Unused subs: Burba (GK), Sutherland.
Listen to thoughts of Manager Neil Smith following tonight’s win below!