Home Match vs Odd Down FC (TWLPD)
Wednesday 27 October 2010
Toolstation Western League Premier Division 2010/11
Sherborne Town 1st
0-1 (Home Defeat)
Harry Montacute - keeps improving
A hotly-debated goal against the run of play saw Sherborne Town pay the ultimate price for not making the most of second half possession.
Odd Down's counter-attack strike that had more than a hint of offside proved enough to take all three points from a gutsy Toolstation Western League Premier Division encounter at Raleigh Grove.
Despite being dismayed with the performance of the officials, manager Mickey Spencer refused to allow the trio in black to take full responsibility for defeat.
"What I am finding is that through our dominant periods of the game we are not punishing teams," he said. "That was the case at Brislington and was most certainly the case last night where for a large majority of the second half we dominated but failed to test the keeper.
"That only adds pressure to a defence. Our performances have warranted something but because we have failed to take our opportunities we are being punished by the odd goal.
"A draw would have been a fair result and it is a hard thing to swallow when you are losing a second half that you have controlled for 70 per cent of the period."
After a cagey start where both teams found themselves involved in dialogue with the referee, Odd Down registered the first opportunity, firing wide.
Minutes later Jamie Manley's experience was put to test as the sweeper prevented a shooting opportunity, dispossessing his man with a fine tackle and then clearing.
Both Chris Luke and Phil Ormrod tried their luck from 25 yards for Sherborne's first opportunities. The former's curling effort was comfortably caught, while the latter kept the keeper interested as the ball crept wide.
Odd Down found the net shortly after the restart only for the attack to fall foul of the referee's assistant's offside flag. The scare was enough to prompt Sherborne's best period of the fixture, as well as their most clear-cut opportunity.
A deep free kick worked its way to Sam Jarman at the far post who blazed over from close range and the goal at his mercy.
Odd Down were now restricted to hitting their hosts on the break and moments before taking the lead keeper Roy Emmerson was tested by an effort from an attacker where he probably should have spread play.
When the goal did come, it left home fans and officials enraged as an Odd Down forward appeared to be offside when the through ball was played.
However, the assistant's flag stayed down and although the initial shot was blocked by Emmerson on the edge of the box, the follow-up was despatched with ease.
Now chasing the game, Sherborne believed they had earned an equaliser through James Thompson's calm finish at the far post but the substitute was judged offside.
Spencer said: "By the time Odd Down had passed the ball through their attacker had gained an advantage on Jamie Manley by running into an offside position.
"I was disappointed with the officiating because both teams could see it was offside. But that is what happens when you do not turn your own pressure into goals.
"I have told the guys that if there is one thing I have learned at Sherborne is that it is foolhardy to rely on the officials to always get it right.
"We need to concentrate on what we are doing because at this standard the officiating is average at best. Therefore any team that builds a strategy think that they are going to get consistent decisions from officials is folly.
"On a positive note I think that Sam Vine is fitting in well and I am impressed with his work rate and his battling. He looks to be a good find. Harry Montacute is getting stronger and stronger and is as steady as you can expect."
Sherborne Town: Roy Emmerson, Harry Montacute, Jamie Manley, Lee Clark, Chris Luke, Steve Burton, Sam Jarman, Sam Vine, Kyle Chesterman, Phil Ormrod, Danny Thompson. Subs: James Thompson (for Jarman), Sam Bowers (for D. Thompson), Lewis Voizey (for Vine).