Berkhamsted are all set for a summit showdown

The top two clash this weekend

By Jon Dunham
Thursday, 27th January 2022, 11:41 am
Updated Thursday, 27th January 2022, 11:42 am
It's a huge game for Berkhamsted this weekend

Berkhamsted are all set for their biggest game of the season so far at the weekend.

The second-placed Comrades head to leaders Bedford Town for a huge top-of-the-table showdown on Saturday (3pm kick-off).

The stakes are high in the battle for the sole automatic promotion spot in Southern League Division One Central after Berko closed the gap on the leaders last weekend.

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While Chris Devane’s side were beating FC Romania 4-2, Bedford were being held to a 2-2 draw at Thame United.

It means that Berko make the trip to take on the Eagles sitting two points behind the table-toppers but still with a game in hand.

In last weekend’s clash, Devane made changes to his side from the starting line-up that featured in Berko’s 1-0 defeat to Swindon Supermarine in the quarter-finals of the Southern League Challenge Cup last Tuesday with Xavi Comas Leon back in goal and Adam Watkins restored to the midfield.

And Berko were in devastating form as they opened up a 4-0 lead inside 35 minutes.

Lucas Kirkpatrick, unusually playing at full-back, crossed from the right wing for Elliot Bailey to give the Comrades an early lead with a header.

Visiting goalkeeper Adrian Darabant fumbled the ball, allowing Jonathan Lacey to fire in his first goal since returning to Broadwater from Hemel Hempstead Town to double the lead.

It was 3-0 after half-an-hour when the Kirkpatrick and Bailey combination saw man-of-the-match Bailey make it 3-0 at the Railway End.

And the game looked to be well and truly over when Reece Robins fired in his first goal for the club since also joining from Hemel.

But Romania didn’t give up and they pulled one back through Oluwatobi Coker before Anthony Edgar scored the goal of the game with a fine strike from 25 yards to make it 4-2.

After the first-half goalfest, more were expected in the second 45 minutes.

But the closest either side came to a goal in the second half was when Willam Danquah struck the crossbar for the visitors.

The referee managed to issue five yellow cards to Comrades players ,but they were able to keep a second half clean sheet to snuff out any hope of Romania making a comeback as they saw things out to set up the showdown at Bedford this weekend.

Berko look set to be well backed at the Eyrie with their fans’ coach already being sold out.

Devane will still be without Ben Walster (suspended) and Tommy Smith (broken nose) but otherwise are set to be at full strength.

After a prolonged seasonal break with bad weather, Berko’s Sunday junior sides got back in action last weekend.

The under-15s had Charlie Bradshaw on target but went out of the League Cup in a 3-1 defeat at Cheshunt.

And there was another cup defeat for the under-16s as they were beaten 5-2 at Billericay.