Frome Town 3 : 2 St Neots Town FC
Match
39
Frome Town 3 : 2
St Neots Town FC
Wednesday 16 March, 2016 19:45

 

Southern League Premier Division

 

FROME TOWN        3        ST NEOTS TOWN      2       

 

Unlucky St Neots returned from their long midweek trip to Somerset with nothing despite a spirited second half performance when they retrieved a two goals deficit. The key to Frome’s narrow victory was a late goal scored in each half and it was particularly hard on St Neots whose improvement after half time following a fairly tepid first half showing had merited at least a point. With Drew Roberts reporting injured after the weekend match Andy Davies handed a striker position in the starting line up to local teenager Jordan Brown alongside the experienced Lee Clarke and the youngster’s non-stop hardworking first half performance when he got little or no service fully justified his inclusion. The only other team change saw the return to the side of Remy Gordon making only his ninth start of the season after a frustrating time on the physiotherapy couch and he looks to be capable of being a positive influence on the rest of the season.  

 

The result lifted the home side to within a point of St Neots still with three matches in hand so the battle to avoid relegation is now well and truly drawn with Andy Davies’ side having just seven matches to amass enough points to retain their Step Three status.

 

In the first minute Brown made his mark when he only just failed to reach a through ball from Lee Clarke forcing home keeper Darren Chitty to dive at his feet. At the other end Frome were starting strongly and a looping cross from Jon Davies eluded all in the penalty area to be cleared off the line by Tom Ward. After 18 minutes an angled shot from the right by Brown was confidently collected by the tumbling Chitty but from that point on the home side dominated the first half. Alex Archer in the St Neots goal made two excellent stops in a 20th minute Frome attack and then Darren Jefferies saw his deflected shot gathered by the keeper. In an off the ball flare up both Brett Longden and Rob Hobbs collected yellow cards – the St Neots player for the fourteenth time this season – before Kris Miller and Jefferies both sent Frome efforts just wide of the target. Rob Hobbs who seemed to be involved in every Frome attacking move then off balance skied a volley over the bar from close range and it looked as though St Neots would survive that torrid first half. Then just thirty seconds prior to the break Hobbs rose at the far post to head in a Jefferies cross to give Frome the lead they had deserved.

 

Just four minutes after the restart things got even more difficult for the visitors. Longden conceded a free kick on the right touchline and Davies accurate delivery was won in the air by Mitchell Page to double the Frome advantage. St Neots responded with a substitution sending on Dan Schiavi for Jordan Brown to vary their attacking options and after 62 minutes just four minutes after the change a Remy Gordon dipping shot was touched over the bar at full stretch by Chitty and from the resultant Gordon corner Tom Ward rose above the defence to head home his fourth goal of the season to put St Neots back in contention.  

 

Frome looked stunned by this setback and seven minutes later the visitors were really back in the match with a vengeance as Gordon collected a Jamie Anton cross to curl a delightful shot around the keeper from 25 yards to level the scores. For a spell both sides looked happy to consolidate with the best chance of a winning goal falling to St Neots when Peter Clark stabbed his shot just wide of the far post after Tom Ward had headed on a lengthy Longden throw. The sickening blow came six minutes from time against the run of play when from a Davies corner was forced in at the far post by home skipper Sam Teale.

 

St Neots:  Archer, Anton, Longden, Tann, Ward, Burns, Dawkin, Clark (P) Clarke (L), Brown, Gordon

 

Subs:  Schiavi (for Brown 58), Mazeo-Kelly (for Dawkin 82), Coulson and Jeckells.

 

Cards:  Longden (Y - 29)

 

Goals:  Ward (62 mins), Gordon (69 mins)

 

 

 

Frome:  Chitty, Miller, Teale, Hobbs, McPhee, Mapstone, Davies, Bryant, Page, Cleverley, Jefferies

 

Subs:  Jackson (for Bryant 79)

 

Cards:  Hobbs (Y – 29)

 

Goals:  Hobbs (44 mins), Page (49 mins), Teale (84 mins)

 

 

 

Attendance: 123

 

Referee: James Durkin (Weymouth)

 

 

 

John Walker