UEA Men’s football II’s narrowly lost a scrappy meeting with Essex that saw the home side come from behind to snatch victory.

The match kicked off with UEA looking calm and cohesive. Essex soon began to apply some attacking pressure though and play occurred predominantly in UEA’s half. Essex swung a lofty ball over UEA’s goalmouth from the right corner of the pitch. The ball glanced off the bar and out of play to the relief of UEA.

A bitter atmosphere began to linger over the game as both sides put in dangerous challenges that often found flesh rather than the ball. The Essex number 6 gave an extremely vicious blind tackle that on another day could have been a leg-breaker.

UEA were resilient though and made some darting runs up the pitch though impressive wing play. After a foul on the edge of the box, UEA were given a direct free kick. Anthony Forrest Moon stepped up and sent a powerful drive into the bottom right hand corner of the goal with a minor deflection.

Shortly before half time, Essex’s Hugo Demetre retorted with a tap-in from a dangerous ball crossed into UEA’s box. UEA and Essex finished the half with respective chances that failed to break the deadlock.

The second half featured end to end football that found UEA linking up better. The reckless tackling continued from both sides and surprisingly no cards were given by the referee. Chances occurred for UEA and Essex but neither side could capitalise until 75 minutes in. Essex drifted a sweeping ball across UEA’s goalmouth which William Layzell met at the back post and headed in. UEA could not find an equaliser and thus Essex pipped UEA in a fiercely contested match.