Needham travelled to New Lodge for their re-arranged game against Billericay. The 6 week gap since the date of the original game had given the hosts time to put together and integrate their expensive new squad and it certainly showed on the night as they ran riot.
Jack Simmons was missing from the Needham squad due to illness. He was replaced by Darryl Coakley while Ollie Fenn and Billy Clark started in place of Kem Izzet and John Sands who both dropped to the bench
The signs were ominous from the start when Danny Gay had to make a smart low save and the first goal arrived as early as the 4th minute. Following a corner which Needham failed to clear, Abs Seymour was given too much room on the corner of the box and fired a low drive across Gay into the far corner
Billericay dominated the game but Needham did create a couple of chances, with Dobson breaking clear but he delayed his attempted pass to Coakley and was closed down. Rob Swaine was then booked for bringing down Dobson and Miller headed over the bar from a free kick.
Just when it seemed Needham had come through a difficult half hour and could maybe go into the break with only a one goal deficit, they fell apart under a Billericay onslaught and conceded three goals in 10 minutes. The first came when Needham again failed to clear a corner and when the ball fell to Swaine he volleyed it into the bottom corner. Adam Cunnington then rose unchallenged to head home from a right wing cross. Needham fans will remember Cunnington for his late winner for Cambridge United in the FA Cup - this goal was very similar. Billy Bricknell then added to the misery by firing across Gay in the 45th minute
HALF TIME: BILLERICAY TOWN 4-0 NEEDHAM MARKET
The second half continued in similar fashion to the first, with Billericay in total control. Bricknell and Cunnington both shot wide when it looked easier to score. On the hour mark, John Sands replaced Coakley for Needham with Dobson moving out to the left, but Sands received very little service which might have given the visitors the chance of a consolation goal
The Needham supporters behind the goal were joined by ex-loanee Jack Curtis who must have wondered what was going on and at one point home keeper Giddens was invited to stand with us as he seemed to have nothing better to do.......
The fifth goal duly arrived after 72 minutes when Cunnington again headed home and substitute Isaac Layne rounded things off after 87 minutes when he waltzed past three defenders and shot into the far corner.
To finish on a positive note, Dobson did have a shot on goal in the 90th minute but this was easily gathered by Giddens
FULL TIME: BILLERICAY TOWN 6-0 NEEDHAM MARKET
It goes without saying that this was a below par performance by Needham, but they were simply outmuscled and outplayed by a Billericay side who were at least as good as the Leiston team that has comfortably beaten us twice this season. If they continue with this form they could reach the play-offs and, if not, could run away with the league next year. Of course a lot is down to money, but how many clubs would turn it down? Money cant buy the hard work and team spirit that was clearly in evidence alongside the skill.