Burkin hat-trick seals the deal for M2 as the hunt for promotion continues

4-2 win vs Barnes M1

Mens 2’s Report by Andy Fell

As the challenge for the mens London premier league title gets tougher, Southgate Mens 2s took on Barnes Mens 1st team to keep their hopes alive. Barnes had won the previous encounter, so the pressure was on Southgate to even the stakes.

Both teams started strongly, with the initial 2 scoring opportunities falling Southgate’s way. Sadly Southgate were unable to convert and this kept Barnes in the hunt. At 20 minutes, Barnes intercepted a deep Southgate pass and clinically converted the opportunity to go 1-0 up. Southgate reacted quickly and won a PC within 5 minutes, which Drew Burkin expertly converted with powerful and high drag flick to even the score 1-1. Barnes pressure continued and at 30 minutes a long through ball to their high forward saw him unleach a powerful tomahawk which beat Southgate keeper Savvas to put Barnes 2-1 up. Southgate remained calm and again reacted quickly. This time, Sim Bird gathered a high pass into the Barnes circle which he expertly wrapped past the Barnes keeper to level the score 2-2, which remained the score going into half time.

Coach Chris Pearce and Manager Whatley called for continued focus at half time which is what the M2s delivered. 5 minutes of initial pressure led to Southgate winning another PC. Drew Burkin stepped up to the task for a second time and delivered, beating the keep with sheer pace to put Southgate 3-2 up. The second half remained ultimately tight with both teams coming close to scoring on several occasions. Barnes had to change something and decided to take a risk by substituting their keeper to provide and extra outfield player.

Southgate remained solid in defence and at 68 minutes Rob Shearer made a high break into the Barnes circle. With no Barnes keeper between the posts, Shearer had the sole objective to win a PC and give Burkin the opportunity to flick into a keeperless goal. Shearer won the corner and Burkin, for the 3rd time did not disappoint! He buried his drag flick high into the roof of the goal to go 4-2 up. 4-2 remained the final score and saw Southgate pick up 3 important points.