Witham Town 0 Seasiders 2

Thurlow Nunn Reserve League

Saturday 07th April 2018

While the vast majority of clubs at all levels would say that running a reserve side is not about winning, but about development, I would say if you asked any player or manager/coach actually involved in running or playing for a reserve side, to confirm that was the case, they would take a sideways look at you and think, ‘oh dear, how far you are from the truth! It may be a club’s ambition but on a Saturday, it’s all about winning.

Report: Mark Owen

On Saturday the reserve side travelled to Witham Town who are currently 2nd in the table, knowing a home win would see them close to within a point of the leaders. On Paper it should have been a home banker with Witham having won at the Goldstar ground 6-2 as recently as early February with just two league games having been played since then thanks to the inclement weather.   

There was a debut for 16 year old Charlie McCarthy in goal and run outs for Jordy Matthews and Josh Kerridge, returning to fitness after long term injuries, plus Lewis Owen at the back having played for the under 18’s on both Tuesday and Thursday in their cup adventures. He was joined on the bench by three others from the under 18 squad who played the two games in midweek.

 In the end the Reserves toppled the 2nd placed side in an exciting encounter and came away with a very good 2-0 win. The first was an own goal, but all credit to Jordy Matthews whose persistence in the box contributed, the second a close range effort from substitute Josh Horton who reacted quickest to double the Seasiders lead.  

Throughout the first half the visitors had most of the clear chances but just couldn't make them count. Harry Archer could have had a hat-trick if he had directed his header on goal from a brilliant Shane Forbes cross, then scuffed his chance from Sam Segger's cross. Archer was then desperately unlucky not to score as another effort was cleared off the line.  

Josh Kerridge who along with Jordy Matthews had a run out in the reserves after a long lay-off from first team duties hit over after Archer's free kick was spilled by the keeper. Both Kerridge and Matthews were in the thick of the action throughout the first half and combined well down the right only to be denied by the keeper. 

The seasiders debutant in goal 16 year old Charlie McCarthy was called into action with the only real notable attempt on the visitors goal, saving well.  

Just before half time it was the Seasiders who took the lead. A weaving Jordy Matthews through the defence saw his shot cannon off a Witham defender to end up in the back of the net which was nothing more than they deserved. 

The second half started lively but the home side got back into the game, and for a time piled on the pressure, putting the visitors on the back foot. But, the back four were resolute throughout, organising effectively, but did have one scare when Will Ransom had to brilliantly head off his own goal line to deny a certain goal. 

As the game wore on Felixstowe got the upper hand and after a prolonged period of pressure made it 2-0. A corner from the right resulted in a scramble in the box when Josh Horton tucked the ball away. This seemed to knock the stuffing out of Witham and substitutes Oskar Fossberg and Isaac Scott started to run at the opposition defence and were unlucky not to extend the lead with two or three chances.   

All in all a comprehensive display from the reserves, playing some good football on what was difficult conditions with swirling wind and rather amazingly after all the rain a hard pitch with the ball bouncing somewhat making life difficult for both sides.  

Next up for the reserves is a trip to Greens Meadow, Stowmarket on the 17th April.  

 

1 Charlie McCarthy, 2 Will Ransom, 3 Ryan Sparrow, 4 Shane Forbes, 5 Lewis Owen, 6 Joe Allum, 7 Sam Segger (c), 8 Josh Kerridge, 9 Lewis Main, 10 Jordy Matthews, 11 Harry Archer 12 Lewis Smy, 14 Rory Porter, 15 Isaac Scott, 16 Oscar Fossberg, 17 Josh Horton.