- Under 21's PDS
4 December 2023
Bromley made the short trip to the Kufflink Stadium on Tuesday evening, with manager Neil Smith very much looking for a response from Saturday’s defeat at Solihull.
In cold conditions, it was clear from the start that the Ravens were also determined to put things right after four straight defeats.
Despite some neat attacking play from the home side in the opening minutes, they failed to carve a clear chance. Frankie Sutherland had the first real attempt of the evening on 8 minutes, as excellent play from Joan Luque presented him with an opportunity to shoot, but his low, powerful first time drive was wide of Nathan Ashmore’s goal.
However, the Ravens would only have to wait another seven minutes to take the lead. After persistence from Omar Bugiel forced a Bromley corner, Sutherland’s excellent delivery was glanced into the bottom corner by the unchallenged Junior Ogedi-Uzokwe, who was lurking at the near post.
The Fleet almost responded immediately, with Michael Cheek volleying wide from a deep cross, before Bagasan Graham fluffed his lines at the back post. After finding himself with time and space to shoot, he failed to hit the target, ballooning an effort high and wide.
Half an hour in, Bromley would be presented with an opportunity to double their lead. Play was waved on after Ogedi-Uzokwe was brought down in the box, but after Bugiel picked up possession and was bundled over, the referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot.
Up stepped Sutherland, and with a cool, calm finish, he sent Ashmore the wrong way, finding the bottom right corner to put Bromley further ahead.
It could have been three on 41 minutes, and only an outstanding reaction save from Ashmore to deny Bugiel’s shot on the turn kept the scores down.
There would be time for more drama, however, as deep into five minutes of injury time, Jack Powell curled home a delightful free kick from just outside the box, leaving David Gregory with little chance.
The second half was a physical affair, and it was Ebbsfleet who would would apply the majority of the pressure, in search of the equaliser.
Just six minutes in, the lively Graham struck a low shot from range, which deflected off a Bromley foot and onto the base of the post, before debutant Richard Brindley was able to clear.
On 65 minutes, despite all the pressure from the hosts, it was Bromley who would have the best chance of the half to that point. George Porter showed electric pace to meet a through ball before the onrushing Ashmore, but after taking the ball towards the edge of the box, his shot was well saved by Ashmore.
Ten minutes later, despite all the waves of attacks from Ebbsfleet, it would be Bromley who had another good chance. Ogedi-Uzokwe’s inch perfect through ball was met by Bugiel just inside the box, but his scooped effort was again well saved by Ashmore.
The remaining minutes saw further pressure from the Fleet, but as had been the case in the first half, they were unable to carve a clear cut chance, with resolute defending from Bromley being the root cause.
The Ravens held out for a well deserved victory in the end, and will hope to build on what was an impressive result with the visit of FC Halifax Town on Saturday.
Bromley XI: Gregory, Sutherland, Holland (C), Raymond, Bugiel (Meekums), Goodman (R.Johnson), Porter, Ogedi-Uzokwe, Luque (Higgs), Wood, Brindley
Unused substitutes: De Silva, Huxter (GK)
Attendance: 1,204 (125 away)