PICTURE: Frontline celebrate one of their two goals in the 4-2 defeat against rivals Singh Sabha in an East Berkshire League Showcase Match in November. PHOTO: Gary House Photography.
Frontline will lead the East Berkshire Football League Premier Division heading into the Christmas break.
Frontline have been in tremendous form so far this season, winning in seven of their 11 league matches, and topping the goals scoring charts with a whopping 51 strikes.
The team displaced long-time leaders, Old Windsor, after a 4-2 win away at Pundit on Saturday. Zabi Vakili scored twice in the victory at George Pitcher Memorial Ground with both Imran Kassim and Luqman Kassim also hitting the back of the net.
A huge part of the team’s success has been the ability to score goals, bagging an average of more than four goals per game. Imran Kassim is the leading talisman with 15 goals in 10 appearances, with Vakili (10 goals in 8 matches) and Luqman Kassin (8 goals in 10 games) making the attacking threat a nightmare for opposing defences.
Imran Bhatti is Chairman at Frontline and he will no doubt be proud that his side can now be recognised as genuine title contenders this season, as well as becoming role models for future generations at the club. The chasing pack is breathing hard down their necks however, and perhaps one negative for the league leaders has been the inability to take points from matches against their rivals for the crown. Frontline suffered defeat at Old Windsor in the opening week of the season as well as losing to Singh Sabha in a Showcase Match in November.
PICTURE: The top of the East Berkshire Football League Premier Division at the Winter Break with Frontline on top narrowly but, Old Windsor, Singh Sabha and defending champions Britwell United all within touching distance.
Old Windsor might well be the ‘bookmakers favourites’ and in the best position to land the Premier Division title for the first time since the 2019-20 season. The Os have won in seven of their nine league matches and sit behind Frontline on goals difference only - with the advantage of having played two games fewer than the leaders.
A big plus for Old Windsor is their record against other title challengers, taking 10 from a possible 12 points in matches versus other teams currently in the top four this Autumn.
Joseph Allen has had his scoring boots on to hit the back of the net 12 times in 10 appearances but, perhaps more impressive for The Os has been their ability to not concede, just 11 in nine games. The only blot on their copybook thus far was a surprise defeat to Hype Train back in September.
Singh Sabha made a welcome return to the East Berkshire League this season and will go into the Winter break in third position, just a single point behind Frontline but with the disadvantage of having played more matches.
Their star man, Mubarak Bashir, is the joint-leading goals scorer in the Premier Division with 15 goals in 13 appearances but, Sabha will need to beat Frontline again early on in January to improve their chances of regaining the silverware.
Britwell are currently the holders of the title, and winners in the past two seasons and, although the first team has moved on the pastures new, the new Britwell United side will not want to give up the crown without a fight. United have won six and drawn one of their last seven matches to move up into fourth position and now just two points behind Frontline.
Britwell have twice held Singh Sabha to draws in competitive games but, will need to win in games with Frontline and Old Windsor to strengthen their grip on the silverware and improve their chances of completing a hat-trick of championship wins.
Virginia Waters Reserves are brand new entries to the E.B.F.L this season and, although a little bit off the title pace with a seven points deficit on the top two, the newcomers do have games in hand. The Waters will host Old Windsor will the campaign recommences on Saturday 6 January, before Frontline travel to The Timers on 10 February.
Key Dates in early 2024
Saturday 6 January - Virginia Water Reserves v Old Windsor
Saturday 13 January - Singh Sabha v Frontline
Saturday 10 February - Virginia Water Reserves v Frontline
Saturday 24 February - Frontline v Old Windsor (Showcase Match)
To enter the East Berkshire Football League ahead of the 2024/25 season, or for further information about the league, or an entry form for the upcoming season, please email the team at email@example.com