Last seasons games in the A25 derby were competitive and Chipstead proved the stronger in both games. This season is so much different. Sevenoaks have started the season in top gear, scoring goals at will whereas Chipstead have struggled.
Given the performances to date, Chipstead fielding only nine players rang alarm bells as did the lack of a referee but Louis Hollingsbee helpfully stepped into the breach to run the match following a nicely observed minutes silence.
Despite their numerical advantage Sevenoaks started quite cautiously, passing the ball around and probing the Chipstead defences but perhaps not making the most of the possession they had.
Throughout the first half they were often trying to get through the whole side and walk the ball into the net when passing to better placed teammates would have been a better option.
Last week Sevenoaks also enjoyed complete domination but this week at least the opposition were trying to make a game of it, they were working so hard and their goalie, who normally plays in midfield, was excelling himself. His defenders were doing just enough to keep the Sevenoaks forwards at bay and despite the early pressure it was 10 minutes before the home side opened the scoring when Harvey Hollingsbee, having hit the post a few minutes earlier, looped a ball over the goalie into the back of the net.
The Sevenoaks team blew a collective sigh of relief with that goal and never looked back. They didn’t panic but were still guilty of overplaying things so it was another 10 minutes before the second went in. Eddie Lane picked the ball up just inside the Chipstead half and proceeded on a trademark weaving run through the opposition defence, skipping a number of tackles to break into the box and finish comfortably.
Soon it was 3-0, Theo Tite, who had been seeing a lot of the ball on the right, put in a super pass to Floris Faulstich who executed a smart turn and finish to give the goalie no chance.
It was Attack vs Defence as the Chipstead forwards were not getting a look in and Sevenoaks were constantly hunting goals. And but for their goalkeeper they would have got them. Within a matter of minutes he made two instinctive saves to keep the scoreline down but it couldn’t stay that way. Arran Donald scored a rare goal with a simple knock in from a corner after 35 minutes to make it 4-0 before Josh Penfold thumped a ball into the net to make it 5-0.
There was still action before the half time whilst blew and in a very rare foray down the field, Chipstead scored a consolation but deserved goal with a flick on from a corner, much to the annoyance of the Sevenoaks back line.
With the rain falling the two teams return to the field for the second half. It was all Sevenoaks again but the finishing touch was missing. The visitors were still playing well and were getting into the other half on occasion although George Porter was untroubled. It wasn’t until the 25th minute that the hosts were able to extend their lead when Arran Donald was on the spot to get his second. That opened the floodgates as the determined Chipstead team finally faded after an hour of chasing the game.
Sevenoaks were still trying to walk the ball into the net so it was a pleasant surprise when Kai Okulaja shot from the right hand side of the box to make it seven. Before long he had made it eight and this time he did walk it into the net!
Time was ticking away and both sets of supporters were looking forward to the final whistle as Chipstead simply had nothing left. Their goal keeper still had the opportunity to slap another Sevenoaks chance away before Finn Richardson stepped up to make it 9-1 to the home team for another utterly dominant victory. They now have five win out of five and are playing so well but could do with a more competitive game to really test them.