Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

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Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by Kelston Koppite on Sat Nov 26, 2016 7:07 pm

Bath City progressed through to the First Round Proper of the FA Trophy with a comfortable victory over Southern League Premier Division outfit Basingstoke Town at Twerton Park. A goal in each half from Tyler Harvey proved sufficient to see off the challenge of the visitors in this largely low key cup tie.

Basingstoke started the game with more purpose and had the early advantage in terms of possession, forcing their hosts into a series of misplaced passes through the employment of youthful pressing tactics. Whilst Nana Owusu showed good pace and trickery down the left flank for Town, chances were at a premium for both sides in the first quarter of the match.

The first attempt on goal arrived on 24 minutes following a long throw into the Basingstoke box by debutant loanee Axel Andresson, but Nick McCootie swept his shot wide of the far post.

With City struggling to find any momentum against their lower league opponents, Gary Owers acted by bringing on Shaquille Hunter for Marvin Morgan in the 27th minute, and the move almost reaped immediate reward. Andy Watkins, switched to the right in the reshuffle, crossed into the danger area, and Hunter’s flicked header struck the far post.

Owusu cut inside from the left and fired an angled shot across the face of Max O’Leary’s goal, but the home side took the lead in the 32nd minute. A cross into the Basingstoke box flew into the air off a defender, and Joe Gator bundled Harvey to the ground in his hasty attempts to clear. The referee, Mr. James Durkin, son of former Premier League official Paul Durkin, had no hesitation in pointing to the spot. With City’s miserable success rate for converting penalties there was understandable trepidation amongst those on the terraces, but Harvey dusted himself down and confidently planted the ball into the corner of the net, sending keeper Alex Tokarczyk the wrong way in the process.

The Romans, with confidence clearly boosted, began to play some neat football as they sought to build on their advantage. It was Town, however, that came closest to scoring ahead of the break, when Owusu raced forward and unleashed a rasping drive that O’Leary repelled with an awkward save. Romone Rose then tried his luck from 30 yards, but was comfortably wide of the target with his speculative effort.

City emerged after the break and immediately put The Dragons under pressure, and their endeavours were rewarded in the 48th minute. Billy Murphy delivered an inch perfect through ball into the path of Harvey, and the striker advanced down the inside right channel before calmly finding the far corner of the net beyond the advancing custodian.

The home side now enjoyed a period of supremacy as they sought to put the game beyond the visitors, and a good move involving both Watkins and McCootie provided Hunter with an opportunity, but his shot lacked the power to beat Tokarczyk. It was the substitute’s last action as he was replaced by Naby Diallo on 62 minutes.

Basingstoke came more into the game thereafter as City appeared happy to concede possession and protect their lead. Tokarczyk was perhaps fortunate not to be penalised for handling the ball outside his box, but his subsequent swift distribution released Robert Atkinson, who embarked on a marauding run into the heart of the City rearguard. The ball was eventually played to Aaron Redford, but he wastefully fired his shot wide of O’Leary’s far post.

McCootie was booked for persistent infringements and was slightly fortunate not to the shown a second yellow card moments later for committing another foul following the resulting free kick. He was withdrawn moments later in a sensible move to preserve numerical parity.

Jack Batten’s deflected cross from the right dropped on to the top of the crossbar with Tokarczyk appearing distinctly uncertain, but the resulting corner came to nothing. Basingstoke continued to push forward but were unable to create clear openings, and it was Watkins who came closest to adding to the scoreline with two minutes left on the clock. The wideman expertly took the ball on his chest, turned adeptly, and saw his volley from 25 yards pass just wide of the upright.

As the game entered stoppage time, Basingstoke had their best two chances of the afternoon. First Owusu weaved his way into the box but his shot was deflected over the crossbar, and then Sam Deadfield burst through on goal, only to be denied by a fine blocking save by the outrushing O’Leary.

This was not a classic by any stretch of the imagination, and Basingstoke held their own for long periods without ever posing a serious threat to the home goal. Bath were unable to dominate their opponents for prolonged periods but, in the end, the clinical finishing of Tyler Harvey was decisive. City eyes will now be on Monday’s First Round draw, when the Somerset side will be hoping for another home tie.

Bath City: Max O'Leary; George Rigg, Jack Batten, Axel Andresson, Dan Ball; Nick McCootie (Chas Hemmings 78), Billy Murphy, Frankie Artus, Andy Watkins; Tyler Harvey, Marvin Morgan (Shaquille Hunter 27, Naby Diallo 62)). Subs not used: Lee Marshall, Steve Phillips.

Basingstoke Town: Alex Tokarczyk; Marcus Johnson-Schuster, Robert Atkinson, Matt Partridge, Joe Gator, Charlie Kennedy, Sam Deadfield, Michael Atkinson (George Bennett 75), Romone Rose (George Hallahan 62), Aaron Redford, Nana Owusu. Subs not used: Richie Whittingham, Kieran Greene.

Referee: Mr. James Durkin (Portland).

Attendance: 366.

Kelston Koppite

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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by LB on Sat Nov 26, 2016 8:17 pm

Not often that you see a substitute substituted! It happened today when Naby replaced Shaquille who had replaced Marvin and also at Wealdstone when Lee Marshall replaced Josh Hutchinson who had come on after Ryan Broom's injury.  

Thought Nick was very lucky to stay on today. He could easily have been booked in the first half and when he committed a foul immediately after the yellow card I thought he would be walking. If he hadn't been subbed when he was I doubt if he would have finished the game.

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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by pete mac on Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:07 pm

Very flat game today and a quiet/small crowd but an efficient win against a good young technical team.

Let's hope for a big name at home to get some excitement back.

Harvey great again.

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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by stillmanjunior on Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:11 pm

Thought the defence was more or less faultless. Owusu was a bit of a handful but Rigg dealt with him well, Batten and Andresson barely missed a thing (especially in the air) and Ball was solid.

Dreadful opening half hour where next to nothing happened. The substitution sparked some life into the game. We soaked up what was thrown at us really well.

Not a game that'll live long in the memory but much needed funds. An early exit akin to last year would have been a setback. And at least we haven't got a damn replay for once!
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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by comrade powell on Sat Nov 26, 2016 11:42 pm

Considering our poor record against lower level opponents in recent years, that was a very welcome win. As KK suggests, the real difference was Harvey's finishing, as Basingstoke created some decent openings but had no finish. Fingers crossed for another home draw and a trophy run to kick start the season.
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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by London Calling on Sun Nov 27, 2016 1:47 pm

Interviews will be up online later or tomorrow at the latest.

I spoke to Axel afterwords, he seems very enthusiastic about getting first team football and for 18 years old looks like an absolute monster up close, I'm nearly 6ft and he towered over me!

Watch out Conference South forwards...

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Re: Bath City (1)2 Basingstoke Town (0)0

Post by comrade powell on Mon Nov 28, 2016 12:29 pm

A word of praise to the Basingstoke fans, who turned up in good numbers and according to this had a nightmare journey...

http://basingstoketownfc.freeforums.net/thread/1239/supporters-club-chairman-judas
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