Weymouth 1 : 1 St Neots Town FC
Match
06
Weymouth 1 : 1
St Neots Town FC
Saturday 29 August, 2015 15:00

Southern League Premier Division

 

WEYMOUTH       1         ST NEOTS TOWN      1      

 

St Neots last defeat in an away league match came seven months ago on 20th January – at Weymouth. This return visit would have given them appropriate revenge but for a goal in the 89th minute that was rough justice for the team and travelling support.   St Neots new goal scoring machine Tom Meechan had pinched what looked certain to be a goal worthy all three points but it was disappointment after the gruelling five hours Bank Holiday trip to the seaside.  

St Neots had named an unchanged starting line-up although Manager David Batch had constructed an interesting shuffle of his side with Brett Longden at full back, Jamie Anton in central defence and Matt Mitchel-King in midfield alongside Connor Hall. The reorganisation gave the side more stability and the midfield pair were able to dominate much of the play in their area However Weymouth are a well organised outfit themselves and their determination not to be beaten was a significant factor in the final fifteen minutes of a closely fought match. The Referee rather spoiled that last passage of play by booking two players from each side for fairly trivial offences – one of which unfortunately led to the Weymouth goal.

The first half was a disappointing affair with the strengths of each side stifling the creativity and flair in their opponents. Once the game had settled there was far too much niggle resulting in a host of free kicks awarded to both sides that cancelled out the attacking intentions and rhythm of the game.  

There were early injuries requiring on the field treatment for both Nathan Frater and Ryan Hawkins as the home defence were ruthless in their tackling and the only early threat on either goal was when the lively Jordan Copp got behind the St Neots defence to flash the ball across a gaping goalmouth. A defensive slip by Brett Longden let in home striker Josh Grant who went around the advancing Danny Gay but Tom Ward got back to scrape his net bound angled shot for a corner. Neither goalkeeper had a save to make until the 37th minute when Isaac Galliford tested Jason Matthews with a well-directed free kick but the clearest first half chance arrived two minutes before the break when a neat Weymouth move involving Copp and Billy Lowes set up Ben Thomson but he sent his shot wide of target. In time added at the end of the first half Matt Mitchel-King headed over the bar from an inswinging Galliford corner.

 

The second half began as the first had finished with some uncompromising tackling in midfield and Mitchel-King was harshly booked after complaining about the award of a free kick after he clearly appeared to win the ball. However the St Neots change of tactics with Frater and Hawkins swapping roles gave St Neots a much better shape in their attack and Frater was brought down 20 yards from goal but Tom Meechan’s firmly struck free kick was blocked by the defensive wall. Copp shot across the face of goal at the other end as the game opened up and St Neots best move of the match to that point after 72 minutes saw Meechan and Frater combine to set up Hawkins but Matthews in the home goal did well to parry his shot.  

By now Weymouth had utilised all three substitutes in a bid to vary their approach but after 76 minutes Hawkins cut inside into the penalty area to set up Tom Meechan whose shot seemed to wrong foot the keeper and went inside a post to give St Neots the lead.  

This setback galvanised Weymouth and they went in search of an equaliser.  Gay did well to gather as low shot from substitute Mark Moseley and Tim Sills and Tom Ward were booked for an off the ball incident.

Four minutes from time Longden seemed to win the ball fairly but Adam Kelly went down clutching his ankle and the Referee booked the St Neots defender and awarded a free kick that was driven with pace into the six yards area by George Rigg. The ball rebounded from a defender and Chris McPhee forced it in for the equaliser.  

It was rough justice for what what had been a solid, workmanlike display by St Neots Town.

 

 

St Neots: Gay, Longden, Wilkinson, Hall, Ward, Anton, Frater, Mitchel-King, Meechan, Hawkins, Galliford

SubsTann, Clarke, Osei-Addo, Trotman and Burton (none used)

Cards:  Mitchel-King (Y – 50), Ward (Y – 83), Longden (Y – 86)

GoalsMeechan (76 mins)

 

WeymouthMatthews, Wells, Cooper, Lowes, McPhee, Brooks, Kelly, Rigg, Grant, Thomson, Copp

Subs:  Moseley (for Lowes 68), Sills (for Grant 68), Jevon (For Thompson 74), Buse and Higgins.

Cards: Sills (Y – 83), Wells (Y – 88)

Goals: McPhee (88 mins)

 

Attendance608

 

RefereeSimon Knapp (Bristol)

 

John Walker