Macron D&E League Div 1 Saturday 9th December 2017
The Vikings were given a footballing lesson by a talented Uni side on their massive pitch at the University Sports Hub on Topsham Road.
Designed to the maximum pitch measurements for obvious reasons it was a tough task trying to win the ball back for Town. The first half an hour was pretty even with Ferenc Bodor and Aidy Parr stretching the hosts back four at times. Too often a long ball was chosen when a ten-yard ball, to keep possession, was ignored. Adam Bartlett coped with any crosses that came his way as the back four stayed mostly solid. In tight games quite often the first goal is so important, and it was the University who broke the deadlock on 35 minutes.
Half time gave Town a chance to regroup and it was felt that this game was far from over. In fact it was the Vikings who came out straight away and put the University back four under pressure but couldn’t find that final ball to create the equaliser. On the hour mark some unusual defensive play allowed the University’s tricky winger to double the lead, effectively sealing the points as the wind was taken out of Towns sails. A third was added as the visitors tired but to their credit they never gave in and all put in a shift for the club.
September 2nd was the last time that the Reserves tasted defeat. They are a talented group and should be proud of this run of wins. Sometimes you have to hold your hands up and say the best side won and that was true today. Tom Moore came on and showed some nice touches and hopefully he and others that have been consistently playing well for the Thirds can force their way into the Reserves. Next week sees the Vikings away again to unbeaten Colyton 2-15 ko.
Come and support the boys!!
Devon Senior Cup Saturday 2nd December 2017
Town got through a tricky tie in Mid Devon. On a heavy pitch the home side started brightly and instantly caused the Vikings problems. The visitors looked lethargic and within ten minutes had conceded a penalty that was dispatched giving keeper Rob Gluchowski no chance. For the remainder of the half Town toiled away with no clear-cut chances being made at either end.
After a few home truths were pointed out to the lacklustre away side at the interval the second half saw a much-improved performance. Ferenc Bodor decided he was going to change the game in the way that only he can, first he picked out Aidy Parr at the near post and parity was restored. Two minutes later and the Vikings went ahead with Bodor finishing off a great move. Bodor then had his free kick parried by the home custodian and from the rebound Ben Goodier smashed an unstoppable left foot drive that flew into the top corner. Parr added his second as the Vikings put on an impressive attacking display. Ben Miller, Ben Burrows, Goodier and Bodor all had efforts saved as the gloss was put on an ordinary performance. The home side will feel a little hard done by with the score not giving a true reflection of the game. As you progress up the leagues taking your chances proves to be the major difference between sides and Town basically kept Thorverton quiet on that front
Looking at the squad we have players who are not performing at their best. As a group they are an honest bunch and the spirit is there but individually they need to realise if they apply themselves then this season could be something special
Next week sees the Vikings away to top of the league University 2 .15 ko
Macron D&E League Div 1 Saturday 25th November 2017
Saturday saw the Vikings play host to their Somerset visitors on a chilly November day. With an even younger side than usual it took time for the side to settle into any sort of rhythm. Whilst trying to organise themselves the Vikings conceded the opening goal with Jake Sellick keeping goal, beaten before he had set himself for the shot. This had the desired effect as Town upped the tempo and drew level as Aidy Parr expertly slotted home. For the next twenty minutes Parr became virtually unplayable along with Ferenc Bodor, who also looked back to his best, as they tore apart the visitors back line. Parr added two more before the break to make it 4-1
The second half had a feeling of “Groundhog Day” as Wellington opened the scoring which then saw the Vikings turn on the style as they laid siege to the opponent’s goal. Parr got a fourth, Bodor grabbed a couple giving him his hat trick and Joe Miller rounded things off taking Jimmy Pearce’s well weighted pass and rounded the keeper to tap in. A defensive mix up saw the Wellies grabs their third in between all the goals.
The Vikings are obviously happy to score eight but conceded cheap goals and if they want to win anything will need to tighten up in defence. Having said that for class football in patches and Keystone Cop defending at times it’s an entertaining watch when the Reserves are in town!!!
Ben Goodier given his first start after impressing the third team management did well and looks to have a bright future. Jimmy Pearce has been on the fringes of the Reserves and with the position he plays being strong player wise was overdue an opportunity and did himself no harm with some intelligent play after coming off the bench. As did Luke Spiller who slotted in at right back and technically looks sound.
The club are trying to give youth a chance and these three breaking through is testimony to the beliefs of the management of the 3s and 4s who are promoting the players up through when the time is right.
Again player availability saw the team missing three from last week and next week’s Devon Senior Cup tie away to Thorverton 2pm ko gives management duo Gary Bargery and Paddy Thomas a selection dilemma. It will be a tough test for the Vikings that’s for sure. Odds on it being 0-0 after 90 minutes are very short!!
Macron D&E League Div 1 Saturday 18th November 2107
On a terrific “Full House“ Saturday that saw all four sides win the Vikings claimed all three points.
Playing well in patches Town looked lethargic and it wasn’t a great first half from either side, neither goalkeeper had too much to do as time and again the final pass was awful. Five minutes before the break the Vikings took the lead when Will Jenkins was played in out wide and smashed an unstoppable drive through the keeper’s hands.
The second half saw a much improved performance from the youthful Viking’s side. Playing with a higher tempo and closing down the opposition as a group paid dividends when Jenkins floated in a free kick out wide that evaded everyone and nestled in the far corner of the net. Confidence was high and it wasn’t long before it was 3-0 with Jenkins involved as his cross was headed home by an unfortunate Alpha defender
Game over? No the away side sat back and allowed Alphington to put pressure on the back four. Conceding with fifteen minutes left Town looked flaky as panic set in. Thankfully they managed to see out the remainder of the game to seal the win
On a weekend when all four sides were strong it goes to show if players make themselves available then competition for places should bring out the best in those that are given the shirt every week. Wellington home 2-15 KO is the Reserves next match.
Macron D&E League DIV 1 Saturday 11th November 2017
On a muddy Wingfield Park pitch, used earlier in the day by an U9 side the Vikings produced arguably there best footballing performance of the season. So many youngsters, heavy pitch, physically will they cope? All questions that managers Gary Bargery and Paddy Thomas discussed with the players and who to a man did the club proud.
Playing all the football, Town making but not taking chances, you can sense what’s going to happen and lo and behold Heavitree score with their first shot of the game after Jake Sellick couldn’t hold the “soap like” ball, Scott Hughes then scored an equaliser before half time.
The second half saw a repeat of the dominance the away side showed before with Town going 2-1 & shortly after 3-1 ahead, happy days. Then in over 40 years playing and being involved in Men’s football I could not believe what happened, Russ Coombes was making way for club stalwart Nick Gingell when Heavitree played a quick free kick with Coombes 30 yards away from the touch line the ref then saw what happened and let play go! Where did the ball go next? Towards Russ Coombes, to who a booking was given, in our opinion an absolute shocker of a decision and a mockery of all the good efficient capable referees around, worse was to follow when a clear offside was overruled for no reason, Matt Colson handled the ball in the Penalty area getting sent off in the process, Colson had up till then kept Budleigh First Teams No 9 a mere spectator! The home side grew in strength from the resultant penalty and punished a ten-man team that was still playing all the football right to the 95th minute.
Pride is the overriding factor here. We have some very talented players in the club, they can all play football and the desire to play for Sidmouth Town FC needs to happen every week.
Alphington Res away next Saturday 2-15 pm KO.
Firewatch Devon Senior Cup Saturday 4th November 2017
Town made it through to the next round of the Devon Senior Cup but were made to work hard for it by spirited opponents.
Starting on the front foot chances were created but the final pass was poor or a wrong decision was made when the opportunity arose, the visitors then broke away quickly through a gaping hole in the midfield and this gave ex Viking Matt Rasmussen the chance to fire past keeper Gluckhowski Town were stunned and for a ten minute spell looked clueless, a bit of good fortune saw the hosts draw level as Ferenc Bodor crossed and a defender saw his clearance ricochet into his own net, confidence grew within the side and when the team played it simple they sliced through the Pops defence with ease. Another former Viking Alex Bowring was starring for the plucky visitors as they never let Town settle into any constant rhythm, Ben Miller drove in a second midway in the first half to edge Town in front and this stayed the same through to the interval.
Tactical changes were made at halftime as Will Jenkins entered the fray and it wasn’t long before he was whipping in a great cross from the right-hand side that eluded Aidy Parr by inches, a third goal came when again a goalmouth scramble saw another own goal conceded, like an annoying fly that won’t go away the Popples replied through Rasmussen to keep the Vikings on their toes, Parr finally got his name on the scoresheet adding the fourth to seal an unconvincing victory.
A typical “banana skin” game today. They had nothing to lose as if they were heavily beaten it was to be expected. Newton Poppleford showed that if they play like that then they will quickly climb the table. For the Vikings it remains a mystery how such a talented group of individuals can’t gel as a team, but we will keep working to improve.
Another victory is always welcome and hopefully a good team performance is on the cards shortly.
Macron D&E League Div 1 Saturday 28th October 2017
Towns second string made hard work in an eventful match on a perfect surface at their Manstone headquarters. An even first fifteen minutes soon changed when Aidy Parr rifled in the first goal. Soon to be followed with a second and Ben Miller prodded home a third as the Vikings tore the Heavies apart. Unfortunately their failure to further punish the away side came back to haunt them as a spirited Heavitree team missing quite a few regular starters drew level in the final third of the first half. Embarrassing for all involved as the home side wearily trudged off towards the spring cleaned changing rooms.
A few home truths were explained at the interval as the players needed to up the tempo and realise that possession is preferable to a forty yard worldy that rarely comes off. Aidy Parr claimed his hat trick and Town were once again in front. Heavitree but once again bounced back to level the score with fifteen minutes remaining, Nick Gingell then played a straightforward ball down the flank to the impressive Louis Spalding who crossed into the middle and Ben Miller showed great desire to make the box and smartly head home to seal the points.
Managing this group of players is eventful and individually they are a talented bunch. However the basics don’t change and if they are to be competitive in this league then a massive improvement is required. In an era when player availability is so poor with teams folding the positives at STFC fielding four teams consistently is a great achievement. However the quality of the football being played by the 1sts and 2nds is fairly dismal in all honesty. The players need to knuckle down and show some pride when picked to perform and give the managers a difficult decision week on week. Changes will be made, if players are available, let’s wait and see!!, when the Vikings host local rivals Newton Poppleford in the Devon Senior Cup next Saturday 2pm ko.