Gt. Yarmouth 0 Seasiders 2

Thurlow Nunn League

Premier Division

Saturday 24th February 2018

The last game of January saw us entertain (I use that term loosely) Gt Yarmouth Town, who went home happy having picked up three points to leave us within catching distance for Coggeshall and here we were playing the last game of February against … Gt Yarmouth Town. Is there such a thing as fate? I don’t think so in the context of football, at the end of January we were playing well below the level the fans had become accustomed to and points were slipping away from us.

Hopefully that game was the bottom of a downward spiral, and since then, all credit to the side, they have got their MoJo back with two good league victories and a narrow defeat in the Suffolk Premier Cup against a Needham side playing two levels higher in the non-league pyramid.

It was a special afternoon for Joe Francis who lost his Grandad exactly a year ago on Saturday and he dedicated his two goals to his grandad

It was a bitterly cold afternoon and the wide open spaces of the Wellesley provided little protection for the hardy band of brilliant Felixstowe supporters who made up over half the crowd. But they were rewarded for their journey, as well taken goals in each half by Joe Francis provided three valuable points for the Seasiders and increased their lead at the top of the table with Coggeshall held at home in a goal-less draw with Kirkley & Pakefield.

Missed first half opportunities by Felixstowe provided encouragement for the home side as their determination and belief increased after the interval and the second goal, six minutes from time, in an otherwise low key game, finally settled the visitors’ nerves and any doubt about the result.

Francis showed his intention in the second minute, receiving a long cross field pass from Miles Powell before volleying over the bar, followed by home keeper Jack Whatmough producing an excellent save to deny Scott Chaplin from close range as he met a cross from Francis.

Good build up play from the Seasiders saw Sam Ford shoot narrowly wide before Francis opened the scoring, completing a flowing move with an excellent strike from sixteen yards, midway through the half. 

Haydn Davis impressed for the Bloaters, shooting narrowly wide following a strong run from the half way line, and Aaron Sanders also went close from distance as the home side pressed for a reply. Felixstowe finished the half strongly, with Whatmough saving from Stuart Ainsley and Ford going close as opportunities continued to be created without the lead increasing.

Yarmouth showed greater urgency from the restart, with Kyle Howell's shot charged down by the visiting defence and Danny Crump quickly off his line to deny Josh Ford. Few opportunities were created by either side in the second half until Powell split the home defence with a telling pass to Francis, who skipped in from the right and deftly placed the ball over the advancing Whatmough to confirm the win.


Match Report Chris Ryan - Pictures Stan Baston

Speaking to Ian Watson after the game he said

Great performance on a windy horrible day, the pitch wasn’t the greatest but the boys dug in for three points. Joe Francis was outstanding on a big day for him emotionally, a year to the day he lost his Grandfather and his two goals go out to that.

The defence and Crumpy stood fast and we were physical and scruffy at times, which we have not been since I have been back here. It was a quality squad performance and we move onto next week’s big game. Jamal was excellent as were the other midfielders Kye and Chappers.

All attention now turns to next Saturday as we look forward to the visit of second placed Coggeshall Town for what could be a hugely important match for both sides, the seedgrowers have to first navigate their way past Ely City who they host on Tuesday evening (weather permitting) when a win would leave them eight points adrift with three games in hand and a much superior goal difference.

What we need next week is a full turn out of support, let’s get the Goldstar rocking as we look to get back into the driving seat!