JOSH Osude's 95th-minute goal saved Witham Town from automatic relegation in dramatic fashion in the last league match of the season, writes JIM PURTILL.

Osude's strike in the last few seconds of added time gave Town a 3-2 win and condemned Barking to relegation, giving Witham the chance to avoid the drop if they beat Saffron Walden in the play-off match on Saturday.

It was a match high on drama but the excitement was not matched by the quality of the football on show.

Romford have had a very difficult season but they had a bright opening and looked the more impressive side in the early stages.

The first chance fell to the hosts in the tenth minute when Tammi Ogunnowo forced Witham custodian Rhys Madden into a good save.

Nine minutes later another dangerous Romford attack was ended when Witham’s Luke Ige deflected a shot from Justin Bailey for a corner.

A throw-in from Ige found Adam Vyse in space and the striker’s fierce shot went narrowly wide in Witham’s first significant attack after 18 minutes.

Romford’s L’heureux Menga who played 22 times for Witham in two spells was causing problems for the visitors’ defence with his direct physical style.

Madden made an athletic save from Menga’s shot in the 20th minute but the striker put the hosts ahead three minutes later.


The pace of Witham’s Josh Osude and Ramiah Mills proved Witham’s most potent attacking threat.

A run down the right wing by Osude presented a chance for Vyse to shoot but Rob Budd in the Romford goal was alert to the danger.

Most of the action was taking place at the wrong end for Witham.

Madden has been exceptional for Witham throughout the season and he saved brilliantly from Menga and Ogunnowo to prevent the visitors from falling further behind.

In the 35th minute Mills shot just over for Witham following good work by Vyse.

The visitors equalised two minutes later when Adam Cheniti shot into the roof of the net after a cross from Osude from the right.

Both sides showed attacking intent in the early part of the second half but they struggled to keep possession.


To Romford’s credit, they made a fight of it despite the result being of no real significance to them.

Thirteen minutes after the break a pass by substitute Callum Matthews put Osude through on goal but he shot was saved by Budd.

The game was finely balanced but Witham suffered an apparently mortal blow in the 62nd minute when Menga put the visitors ahead from the penalty spot after a clumsy challenge in the box.

Witham raised their game and attacked with alacrity.

Mills and particularly Osude found more openings and the greater creativity afforded by the probing of Matthews enabled Witham to exploit the gaps in the home defence.

Osude missed a good chance when he shot over and Vyse missed a better one with a tame header over the bar when he was well positioned.

The breakthrough occurred when Osude levelled the score in the 82nd minute.

Witham attacked with greater energy and determination in search of a winner but looked vulnerable at the back.

Madden saved brilliantly to deny Temitore Babolola.

In injury time a run by Vyse was stopped at the expense of a throw-in on the right.

From the throw-in Ousde had a shot blocked by Budd and put the ball over the bar from the rebound when a goal looked inevitable.

Witham seemed to have run out of time but Osude’s winner gives them hope of an escape in the play-off match at the Simarco Stadium on Saturday.