Dunstable Town 3 : 0 St Neots Town FC
Match
16
Dunstable Town 3 : 0
St Neots Town FC
Tuesday 20 October, 2015 19:45

Southern League Premier Division

 

DUNSTABLE TOWN       3       ST NEOTS TOWN       0                 

 

This was a very disappointing result and performance for St Neots and it was all of their own making. The players looked weary and jaded – short in confidence and ideas whilst as a direct contrast Dunstable were fired up and eager – boosted no doubt by their unexpected away victory at Merthyr at the weekend. The visiting side lacked co-ordination in their approach, were outplayed in midfield and their two front players on whom most of their success this season has hinged received virtually no service throughout.  

 

St Neots were the leading scorers in the league going into the game but a measure of their ineffectiveness on the night was that their former goalkeeper Paul Bastock now playing for the Bedfordshire side had only two serious saves to make throughout the ninety minutes.  Injury has played a major part in St Neots’ lack of success this season and Lee Clarke and Jack Wilkinson joined the absentees list for this match but Connor Hall and Skipper Adam Tann were back in the starting line-up. However the injury problem has to be managed with the remainder of the squad rising to the occasion and on this evidence that is not happening.  

 

The first twenty minutes showed little sign of what was to follow.  St Neots made a fairly positive start and Ryan Hawkins tormented the home defence with his pace and darting runs and was constantly fouled but the free kicks came to nothing. Hawkins shot wide after a lengthy Brett Longden throw was not cleared and then Bastock made a full length stop from Tom Meechan but an offside flag showed that the effort would not have counted. A Shane Blackett header from a Galliford corner was cleared off the line by Adam Watkins and prior to the opening Dunstable goal the visitors had looked the better side.  

Then a 23rd minute goal seemed to change the complexion of the contest as Adam Watkins surprised Andy Wilton with a perfectly placed bullet of a shot from 30 yards into the top corner of the net. Now Dunstable grew in confidence and both Gary Wharton and Connor Calcutt shooting wide whilst St Neots best effort was a rising shot from Hawkins well saved by Bastock. Just before the break Wharton broke clear but collided with the advancing Wilton on the edge of the area. The keeper was booked but the free kick was blocked by the defensive wall.

 

St Neots needed to move up a gear after the break but the improvement never materialised. Calcutt had a shot parried at full stretch and Wharton brought a good save from Wilton as the home side increased the pressure on the visiting defence.  Bastock touched a Galliford cross over the bar but most of the action was at the other end of the pitch.  

 

St Neots seemed unable to string two passes together and their hopeful punts out of defence gave no hope of building a credible attack. It was clear that a second Dunstable goal would kill the contest and the under pressure Wilton in the St Neots goal made two excellent saves to deny Calcutt and Wharton.   Danny Talbot and Adam Watkins were bossing the play in midfield and the significant breakthrough came after 74 minutes when sloppy defending allowed unmarked full back Luke Pennell to head home a Keenleyside corner at the far post.  

 

Two minutes later Dunstable made it 3-0 when Keenleyside picked out Gary Wharton on the edge of the penalty area and he drove his shot through a crowd of players.   Despite the introduction of two substitutes St Neots had nothing in reply.

They were even denied a late consolation goal when Meechan fired in a fierce volley that Bastock saw late but still managed to divert for a corner and right on time Tom Ward saw a powerful header from a Ryan Horne corner kept out by a combination of keeper and defender.

St Neots: Wilton, Anton, Hall, Tann, Ward, Blackett, Beech, Longden, Meechan, Hawkins, Galliford

Subs: Vieira (for Tann 73), Horne (for Galliford 80), Mailancol, Hobbs and Burton.

Cards:  Wilton (Y – 41)

Goals:  none

 

Dunstable: Bastock, Reynolds, Pennell, Talbot, Kaloczi, Pepera, Watkins, Keenleyside, Calcutt, Gregory, Wharton

Subs:  Roache (for Calcutt 80),Vardy (for Wharton 84), McKenzie-Lowe (for Keenleyside 89), and Pedryzc.

Cards:  Kaloczi (Y – 20), Reynolds (Y – 82)

Goals:  Watkins (23 mins), Pennell (74 mins) Wharton (76 mins)

 

Attendance: 154

 

Referee: Neil Morrison (Heathrow)

 

John Walker