Tardy start costs Holmer dear
Last hour of play by much-changed side, lifts those home supporters who braved the incessant drizzle
Manager Chris Allen made changes to give players who were carrying injures a break before Saturday’s Buildbase FA Vase game at Clanfield in Oxfordshire. Bryan Taylor came in at left-back, Jordan Ajanlekoko appeared in central defence. Aaron Couch led the front line, and James Burrell was skipper for the evening. No one would expect the chosen side to gel immediately. But also one would hope that we wouldn’t concede four goals in the first 25 minutes either. The visitors showed speed and keenness, while The Greens hesitated and dithered.
Goals from Harewood (2), Senior, and Choudry, virtually ended the game before half an hour had elapsed. The fourth reverse finally spurred Holmer into more meaningful action. A long cross from the left was retrieved on the right by Matt Wooster. His low cross was turned into a goal-bound effort by Couch. After the ball was half-saved Alex Rice was on hand to tuck the loose ball home. Before the break Wooster fed Taylor who had a good shot tipped over. But Luca Gaster had to be alert in the home goal. Saving with his feet to prevent Southall from restoring their four-goal cushion. HT 1-4
The Greens started the second half, in the rain, much better than in the first. Taylor was cynically clattered by the away ‘keeper. Who fooled the Referee; making out that he was injured himself. Holmer Green never seem to get away with behaviour like that? On 55 minutes Taylor headed just over at the far post, but again Gaster had to use his feet to keep Southall out. On 64 minutes Couch was withdrawn. Playing up front alone against two large defenders is not really his forte. Raiqwan Joseph came on, and his willingness to run at and across the said defenders had Holmer looking much more dangerous now. Burrell had a flying header beaten out by the Southall ‘keeper, then Joseph was denied by the same man following a good shot. , On 68 minutes after a corner, the Southall crossbar came to their rescue. On 75 minutes, Gaster again saved a one on one to keep The Greens in the match. Ryan Parsons headed a right-wing free-kick narrowly past the Southall post. With Mason Scott and Michael Davies now on, Holmer was getting closer. But they could only score one more goal. On 85 minutes Joseph was fouled from behind, and Curtis Stone converted the penalty-kick.
A much better second half showing from The Greens. But as with the Biggleswade FC game ten days earlier, the good play has to begin right from the first whistle.
Team: Gaster, Parsons, Taylor, Ajanlekoko, Alex Murray, Callum Mapley, Stone, Wooster, Couch, Rice, Burrell.
Substitutes Used: Joseph, Mason, & Davies.
Substitutes Not Used: Gary Lines, & Anthony Tyson.