Sidmouth Town 2 – Bovey Tracey 3

Carlsberg SWPL Division 1 East Saturday 26th September

Whoever said it is a game of two halves was spot on, as was witnessed at Manstone on Saturday.  Sidmouth who had five 16 yr olds in the squad (Olly Binion, Joe Miller, Al Forsyth, Tyler Wellman & Jack Dewinton) began the half at an electric pace full of energy and endeavour which began from the front with Cameron Vere & Ashley Small chasing lost causes and hurrying the Bovey defence into rushed clearances.  It took Sidmouth 15 minutes to get on the score sheet when Connor Swingler ghosted in at the far post to tap in a Tony Cox cross.  Sidmouth continued to take the game to the visitors and on the 30th minute Ryan Davies scored his first goal for the club, Davies tame effort bobbled over the diving Bovey custodian 2-0. The last 15 minutes of the half saw the  young Vikings switch off and only a couple of terrific saves from goalkeeper Alex Bowring allowed the Greens to go in at half time two goals to the good.

The management at halftime made it clear about the need to be tight and keep possession.  However the half time team talk went out of the window when Bovey Tracey scored inside the first minute of the re-start.  Bowring decided to punch a crossed ball from Bovey’s James Dappey, unfortunately the weak clearance fell to Daniel Taylor who chipped the ball to the far post where an unmarked Jamie Orchard headed home 1-2.Sidmouth seemed shell shocked and struggled to regain any composure and needed Bowring to be at his best on more than one occasion, the gloves man was beaten on the 60th minute, again the lively former Devon U16 striker Orchard finding too much space riffling past Bowring with ease 2-2.

The winner came on the 70th minute when a terrific cross was diverted into the home goal by Sidmouth’s Tony Cox.  Sidmouth pushed for a leveller with Small & Vere going close.  The game was tarnished on the 75th minute when Sidmouth’s Captain Aaron Doble was shown a straight red card after an altercation with the match official. Sidmouth will be bitterly disappointed to have lost this game, particularly having a two goal lead at halftime, however they will be delighted that the younger players worked their socks off all game and were a real menace to an experienced Bovey Tracey team who deserve a lot of credit for a superb fight back.  Sidmouth will go into Saturday’s home game against Liverton hoping that the younger players continue to play with so much enthusiasm and commitment but will also hope that the senior players step up and be counted, lead by example and act as role models for the very talented younger members of the squad.

Sidmouth From: Bowring, Binion, Newbery, White, Forsyth, Cox, Doble (C), Davies, Swingler, Small & Vere.  Used Subs: Miller, De-Winton & Wellman

Man Of The Match  Ryan Davies

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University of Exeter 9 Sidmouth Town 2nds 0

Fresha D&E League Division 1 Saturday 26th September

Towns Reserves got a footballing lesson on Saturday in a mismatch that makes a mockery of the Devon & Exeter league. The contest was over within ten minutes as a lacklustre performance from the Vikings saw Uni race into a three goal lead. All too often possession was given away cheaply and confidence was low. Uni on the other hand passed, rotated, found time and space in an excellent demonstration of how football should be played. Unfortunately the Vikings had too many players not willing to take responsibility.

Half time saw six goals and a few home truths were exchanged before a much improved second half performance saw Town at least provide their hosts with a fighting spirited display. Matt Ogley stood out for Town with a never say die attitude that a few of his teammates need to copy. Adam Bartlett was left exposed and helpless far too often and even saved a second half penalty.

No excuses for Town as the best side in the division will coast to victory in this league.

Next up for the Reserves is another tough test away to Bickleigh in a cup match.Hopefully we will have players available to strengthen the side as we need the club as a whole to pull together as the warning signs are there for all to see.

K&M Polonia 1 Sidmouth Town 3rds 2

Fresha D&E League Division 8 Saturday 19th September

Sidmouth 3rd eleven travelled to Exeter on Saturday to take on newcomers K&M Polonia, a team made up exclusively of Polish men.

With manager Ian Peacock away climbing Kilimanjaro, assistant Charlie Nicolle took the reins.  It had been anything but an easy week for the stand in, who had lost almost an entire team from the week before.   If fact the squad had five season newcomers in the starting line-up, two of whom (Mazin Mahmoud and Paul Sexton) were new to the club.  However, the visitors were able to count upon the services of veteran trio Simon Hudson, Jay Thorne and Steve Loosemore for the match as well as Dan Corrick after his brief stint at Newton Poppleford.

Sidmouth started the game well and quickly started to take control of the ball in the middle of the park through the aforementioned Thorne and Josh Worthington.  Chances were at a premium, although Jimmy Pearse was proving to be a thorn in the side for the home team when cutting in from his starting positon on the right of midfield.  Halfway through the first period though, the home team took the lead after a misunderstanding in the Vikings back line.  Before the half time whistle however the Vikings scored an equaliser through the impressive Pearse, after picking up the ball on the right hand side of the park.

The second half started much like the first with the visitors taking control of the football.  Hudson was getting more and more involved and Pearse was continuing to cause the Poles problems from the right of the pitch.  It was no surprise then when the Vikings got the winner, although this time from the left hand side of the pitch through new boy Mahmoud’s well struck shot.

Sidmouth held for the final minutes to claim their fifth win out of five this season.  Next up is another trip to Exeter to face new team, Stoke Arms.  Nicolle will hope he can count on the services of a number of absentees for the K&M Polonia game.

Exeter University 5 – Sidmouth Town 1

Carlsberg SWPL Walter C Parson Cup 1st Round Saturday 19th September

It took a last minute penalty from Riki Pitter, for Sidmouth Town to scupper an excellent performance by the Uni as the students sailed into the next round of the cup.  The impressive students were four goals up at halftime after a near perfect performance that had the Vikings ‘chasing shadows’ for much of the half.

To the students surprise the Vikings were a much changed side that they had beat in a close 2-1 encounter last weekend.   Former St Martins player Luke Barner opened the scoring inside the 1st ten minutes and this was shortly followed by a tidy finish from Chris Lund.  The University’s Man of the Match Andy Varely beat Alex Bowring from a tight angle to make it three on the 30th minute, before top scorer Ben Mogg made it four just before the break.

Sidmouth needed halftime to  regroup.  The second half saw a change of  formation and for large spells were the better side in the second half with Joe Miller & Connor Swingler showing incredible amounts of determination and passion.  However against the run of play Bowring cleared a back pass that fell to Charlie Woodford who hit a first time effort from 45 yards out that sailed over the stranded greens glovesman, a once in a lifetime goal that was cruel on the impressive Bowring.

With minutes remaining Sidmouth’s Joe Gosse teased his marker on the left wing and delivered a fabulous cross that was handled in the penalty area by a home defender.  Pitter made no mistake with the finish, smashing the ball past the brave dive of the home custodianWith four regulars missing Sidmouth took the opportunity to blood more youngsters with Ben Gosse, Joe Goss, & Joe Miller all making the step up and came out of the contest with some real credit against a side that could well be the best team in the league.Sidmouth From: Bowring, Cox, Newbery, Davies, Binion, Small, Cooper, Doble (C), Miller, Swingler & Pitter.  Used Subs: J.Goss & B.Goss

Man Of The Match Connor Swingler

Sidmouth Town 2nds 1 Upottery 2

Fresha D&E League Division 1 Saturday 19th September

Town hosted their rivals on a perfect surface at Manstone on Saturday.

Fielding a weakened team, due to the first team rightly taking priority, the Reserves should have taken something from a spirited second half performance. The first quarter of the game saw the visitors score after ten minutes when a lopsided defence gave way to a switched attack and left a two on one situation. Town looked shaky all over but slowly began to play some football in patches. Top scorer Fez Bodor went close on one occasion and another official might have given a penalty with a rash challenge on the same player moments later. Damien Armes sent a header inches wide with the keeper well beaten.

The visitors had scored from their only chance of a scrappy first half. Confidence was the key to a much improved performance from the hosts. Alex Raistrick making a surprise guest appearance was taking control of the game and Liam Morrish was gradually showing his promise. A dominant showing brought little reward after a lot of pressure through long throws and corners proved fruitless. Armes hit a spectacular right footed volley that crashed against the bar before rebounding to safety. In a rare attack by Upottery they doubled their lead after an error gave the striker the opportunity to hit an outstanding right footed curler into the top corner. This was very much against the run of play and Town grabbed a lifeline through Ben Squance turning the ball goal wards only for the keeper to make a hash of trying to keep it out, so an own goal had given Town the chance to heap more pressure on a resilient Upottery defence. Raistrick and Matt Ogley both went close but they couldn’t work the keeper and it was the visitors who claimed the three points.

 Paddy Comments: A lack of belief in themselves and others led to a shabby first half. Upottery were a decent side and they controlled possession but rarely threatened. We saw nothing to fear from many peoples tip for a top three side. A lot will hinge on the availability of some promising youngsters and a few experienced players that will hopefully provide the club with a competitive second string. The next game up is University away which will be a stern test for the young lads.

Feniton 2nds 1 Sidmouth Town 3rds 2

Feniton Town 2nds 1 Sidmouth Town 3rds 2 (DEVON INTERMEDIATE CUP)

Sidmouth thirds travelled to Feniton  on Saturday looking to continue their 100% record so far this season.  This though was due to be their biggest challenge to date as the opposition in the Devon Intermediate Cup  were thus far undefeated in their league campaign, three divisions above the visitors. However, Sidmouth are full of confidence at present and were able to call upon a strong squad of players including returnees Sam Marriott, Toby Gigg, Richard Johnson and Jake Sellick.

Sidmouth started the game on the front foot, dominating possession without carving out too many clear cut chances.  Lone striker Johnson was holding up play well and being ably supported by wide men Carl Baldwin and Jonny Dunn.   At the other end, the defensive five of Lines, Lines, Gigg, Hiscox and Nicolle were coping well with an opposition attack of some height and strength! The first half continued with few good chances being made, with the exception of a smart turn and shot by Johnson that the Feniton keeper managed to save well.

Half time came and went with the deadlock not broken and Sidmouth resumed the match attacking up the slope.  Again dominating possession, the away team finally started to carve out decent goal-scoring chances and it was of no surprise that captain Carl Baldwin put Sidmouth ahead with a decent strike after finding himself one-on-one with the keeper into the bottom left hand corner of the net.

However, after going ahead Sidmouth seemed to drop their levels of concentration and stop passing the ball quickly. After about 70 minutes a long ball down the pitch was picked up by the lanky Fention forward who managed to get his shot away under little defensive pressure which was parried by Sidmouth keeper Lines only to see it fall kindly at the feet on the opposite wide man who put the ball into the empty net. The equaliser seemed to spark Sidmouth back into life and they again resumed dominance of possession and chances.  Gigg and substitute Jimmy Pearse both carved out good chances well saved by the Feniton goalkeeper. However it was another substitute, Ollie Pinnock who was to score the match winner.  Picking up the ball just into the Feniton  half, he jinked past three or four opposition players and coolly  lobbed the ball over the onrushing goalkeeper and into the net.  Sidmouth have scored a number of great goals already this season, but this might just be the best yet due to the skill, timing and importance.  Sidmouth held on for the final 10 minutes to claim the victory that the opposition manager agreed they fully deserved.  Next up is a match against Exeter based Polish team K&M Polonia in the league.  Sidmouth will enter the match high on confidence once more.

Heavitree United 0 Sidmouth Town 2nds 3

Fresha D&E League Division 1 Saturday 12th September

The Reserves travelled to a grassy Wingfield Park on Saturday to play a second league game of the season. In a hard fought victory it will be the young Viking side who will have learnt so many lessons that will stand them in good stead for the future.

The early exchanges saw the home side gain the upper hand as Town had to withstand some early pressure. On three occasions Adam Bartlett’s goal came under threat but each time the home sides finish was off target. Ferenc Bodor and Liam Morrish were slowly getting into their stride and it was Bodor who opened the scoring on 25 minutes. Picking the ball up some 35 yards out he pushed it forward and struck a sweet left footed strike that swerved in off the far post. Town’s confidence grew and full backs Ollie Binion and Tyler Wellman showed their undoubted ability to break up attacks and then get forward and play some neat football. Mark Burdus and Matt Colson got to terms with their defensive duties allowing the likes of Damien Armes, Matt Ogley and Joe Miller the chance to express themselves. Joe Gosse had a close range effort well saved by Heavitree United’s best player as the Vikings outplayed the hosts.

The second half saw Town dominate the play and if it wasn’t for the outstanding home custodian the score line would have doubled. Gosse twice, miller twice and Bodor were all denied goals. It was left to maverick winger Bodor to show how it should be done. Outpacing the defence he drilled the ball past the helpless keeper to double the lead on the hour mark. The Vikings were awarded a penalty in the last moments as the impressive Miller shimmied his way into the penalty area only to be crudely stopped in his tracks. Up stepped the irrepressible Bodor to claim his hat trick from the spot.

Town’s management agreed that the young Viking side needed to stand up to the intimidation that was plentiful in a typical Exeter side. The youth players will not have come across anything like the crude, and unnecessary tactics of the host’s side. Its credit to them that they played some great football, a lot of credit for that is down to Brendon Willey, and it showed that they were a class above their opponents. Also a big thank you to Alan Rowe who was abused for 90 minutes in disgraceful fashion.

The next couple of weeks will provide a stiff test for the Vikings as they play two sides that are favourites for the league.