The district of Enfield has a rich history for many centuries but, with this match preview in mind, the events of 27th June 1967 stand out for me. A minor tv comedian Reg Varney, still two years away from achieving fame as a dolly bird ogling perv in On the Buses, operated the world’s first ATM (cashpoint machine to the under 40’s) at Barclays Bank in Enfield High Street. Why does it stand out? It’s a world changing event, but it’s carried out by a D list celeb at a bank branch in an anonymous North London High Street. Shurely it should’ve been Sean Connery at their Bond Street branch, but no. Nothing says “non league” to me better than that.
Moving on, an Enfield FC Chairman maybe took this as his inspiration to allegedly use the town’s football club as his own personal cash machine in the early 2000’s, which ended with predictable results. The club then known as Enfield, one time non league royalty, was split, with reconstitution of a new club named Enfield Town. This was followed by Enfield folding and another phoenix club emerging as Enfield1893. Given that both teams have gone on to do quite well from lowly re-start positions, if a few people had swallowed their egos and perhaps kept fingers out of the till, the original Enfield could still be a lot higher up the pyramid than they are today. Oh, and if that’s not enough for you, to create complete confusion there’s still a team called Enfield FC playing in the Essex Senior League. It’s all very non-league.
And that’s not the end of it – if you are not paying attention when you punch Enfield Town’s venue into the satnav, given that they play at the QE2 Stadium you could turn up down the road in Stratford to watch the Hammers by mistake. Life used to be so simple.
On the pitch Tonbridge have been on a very good run this year, but have looked a bit ropey in the last two matches. For some reason they have resorted to a lot of aimless long balls out of defence, and ineffective loopy long throws, instead of the passing game which was serving them so well, and the goals have promptly dried up. Hopefully they can revert to better habits, especially away from home where they have been playing far better than at Longmead, now sitting second in the away form table.
Enfield were my personal bet for promotion this season, especially with the signing of prolific striker Billy Bricknell. However, this seems to have been something of a kiss of death, although they are well placed in the play off pack, in sixth, just three points behind fourth place Tonbridge. So, yes, it’s another play off six pointer! With only three home defeats Enfield will be a very good match for the Angels’ away form, and that makes this a very hard one to call.
Walk out music, as we go into the Brickie’s manor….