Banwell Reserves vs Wrington Redhill Reserves

League Cup Semi-final

7 March 2015 2.30pm

A weakened reserves side travelled to Banwell with hopes of reaching the final of the league cup, but found themselves well beaten. Wrington started with the Burnett brothers joining returning captain Phil Williams at the back, behind a midfield three of Joe Moore, Nick Buck and Louis Rouvrais, and wide men Paul Faulkner and Kyle Selman looking to support Mick Edmunds and Dan McMullen in attack. The away side were able to name only 51 year old manager (or should that be “player-manager”) Julian Moss on the bench.

As in the previous league meeting with Banwell, the game was a physical encounter, and the home side put in some robust challenges early on, including a dangerous tackle from behind on McMullen which arguably could have been a red card but bafflingly went unpunished by the referee. After playing with 10 men for 10 minutes, McMullen was unable to continue, and so Moss was called into action in a straight swap that probably saw him become the oldest player to have played in the competition, and left Wrington having to manage the game carefully to last the distance.

The first half settled into an even affair – with little in the way of chances for either side as both sets of players struggled to play simple passes and retain possession. Louis Rouvrais slipped a shot just past the upright, and Moore hit a tame shot through to the keeper. Banwell were enjoying some success down either wing, having worked out to avoid the centre of the pitch where Wrington enjoyed greater numbers. On 35 minutes Banwell took the lead with a well taken finish after Wrington failed to deal with a bouncing ball into their box, the referee waving away a strong case for handball in the build-up. The home side could easily have gone into the break 2-0 up, but for the cross-bar to come to Wrington’s rescue.

Playing with the wind in the second half, Banwell made much better use of the conditions with a barrage of long balls over the top to get the Wrington defence on the turn, and eventually scored a second as the striker ran onto such a ball to slot past James Vowles, with keeper and defenders pausing momentarily, looking for each other to take control of the situation. If the second goal winded Wrington, then the third was a knock-out blow, as an attempted cross from the right touchline somehow evaded Vowles to nestle in the far corner.

Wrington did not lack effort in seeking to get back into the game, but the quality was missing throughout, and the missing pace of Tom Johnson meant that the Banwell defence were relatively untroubled. The home goalkeeper made a couple of good saves, and Moss came closest to scoring when he saw his shot cleared off the line, after working hard all afternoon.

Committing more men forward ultimately left the visitors open to the counter-attack at the back, and so it proved, as Banwell added two further goals late in the game as the long-ball was again used effectively to present two simple tap-ins.

Whilst the scoreline probably flattered Banwell, they certainly deserved their place in the final, and all at Wrington wish them luck against either KVFC or Westend.

FULL TIME Banwell 5-0 Wrington

Wrington: Vowles, P. Burnett, D. Burnett, Williams (C), Faulkner, Moore, Buck, Rouvrais, Selman, Edmunds, McMullen (Moss)

MOTM: Moss