Goals still hard to come by
By John Anderson
Dean Powles first goal of season not enough for profligate Greens
As Tuffley Rovers unpacked themselves from their minibus after their two hour drive, you fancied Holmer to put behind them their defeat in midweek and claim the points. Sadly it was not to be.
With enforced changes in defence but the similar midfield and attack as midweek Holmer almost scored in the opening attack in the shape of Adam Riley but much of the first half was best categorised as average. Both teams had attacks but neither controlled possession with any certainty. Tuffley showed themselves to be hard working but lacked any real threat up front. That was until the 41st minute when a free kick was given away by Holmer on the corner of the penalty box. The first shot was blocked but the subsequent cross found the head of Dobbins, the Tuffley 9 who placed it past Aaron Brown. 0-1 at HT.
With the enforced substitution of Wooster for Burrell just before half time and Fifield for Cox at half time, Holmer started the second half looking livelier. Initially they struggled to create any real pressure but as the half progressed chances came. Wooster, West and Fifield could all have scored but the goal keeper and the post kept Tuffley ahead.
Midway through the second half Manager Chris Allen swopped Riley for veteran striker Powles in a further attempt to get back into the game and it didn’t take long to produce a result. However, the equaliser came somewhat fortuitously in the 76th minute, with Powles charging down a kick from the Tuffley keeper and the ball finding itself into the net.
The home support then readied themselves for the winner but instead it came from Tuffley. In the 84th minute, Alder for Tuffley was put away although looked to be a yard offside and outpaced the Holmer defence to slot neatly past Brown. 1-2 to the visitors and that is how it stayed as the rain continued to dampen the spirits of the watching faithful. Holmer travel to Abingdon Town for a tough BlueFin Sports Challenge Cup game next Saturday and it is hoped they can shake off the hangover from the last two games and regain the level of performance that they have previously shown this season.
For a team that spent so long in the Spartan South Midland League, life in the Hellenic is very different for Holmer Green. To expect Step 5 teams to travel for two hours from Gloucestershire to Bucks to fulfil a fixture doesn’t seem right and Tuffley, who were a pleasure to welcome to Watchet Lane, are just one of five that will make the trip. And of course Holmer will also be making the same journeys in return. It is hoped that the further review proposed by The FA will result in more realistic travel distances for teams next season.
Report by Rob Shed