Wingate & Finchley suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of National League side, Borehamwood on Tuesday evening. After an enthralling 5-4 win at Haringey Borough on Saturday, Keith Rowland’s side were faced with a tougher test but ultimately, the gulf in class between the sides shone through. Within six minutes, Borehamwood were ahead as Bradley Sach rose highest at the back post to send a header across Shane Gore in the Wingate net. On the 20 minute mark, it was 2-0. This time, Sach’s namesake - Bradley Ash - met a cross at the back post and rifled home an inch perfect volley into the roof of the net.
Chances flowed for the visitors, who made it three just three minutes later. A clever dummy sold two Wingate defenders and Bruno Andrade was on hand to fire into the top corner from the edge of the penalty box; leaving Wingate fans with their heads in their hands, praying for the half time whistle. There was some form of fight shown, however, as Afolabi Obafemi produced a fine, curling effort from the edge of the area on 27 minutes, but saw his shot fly just wide.
Two minutes later, Borehamwood were four up. Andrade was on hand at the back post after a cross from the left wing evaded everybody inside the area, leaving the goalscorer of the third goal with a simple task to double his tally. Wingate’s resistance after the fourth lasted ten minutes, when Ahmet Rifat brought Ash down inside the area. The tricky playmaker got up, dusted himself off and sent Gore the wrong way for his second, and Borehamwood’s fifth - how it remained at half time.
Rowland’s half time team talk likely included the words ‘pride’ and ‘passion’, with an instruction not to lose the second half. His troops put up a stronger fight, though the visitors had made many changes at the break. However, within a minute of the restart, it was six as Andrade secured his own brace, following up a smart save from Gore and sliding into an empty net.
On the hour mark, Wingate had a consolation. Excellent hold up play from Marc Charles-Smith allowed him to get a shot away, which was saved but tapped home by last season’s top scorer, Reece Beckles-Richards to make it 1-6.
However, a seventh followed two minutes later as Dave Stephens’ header after a scramble in the area soured any small hopes of a historic comeback. Beckles-Richards had a stinging shot saved by Grant Smith soon after but the game petered out and the Blues were left with a harsh lesson from an impressive, professional outfit - which will leave them in good stead going into the 2017-18 season.
Report by Nikhil Saglani