Wrington Redhill A v Banwell A 24/10/2015

Wrington Redhill A had a rare home fixture welcoming Banwell A to their temporary Congresbury home. The home started with their usual attractive brand of football with McMullen sliding through the returning Matty Tancock for an early chance that was well saved by the Banwell keeper. Paul Burnett then passed to McMullen in the box who neatly turned his marker who tripped the striker before he could finish. McMullen (Pictured) dusted himself down and slotted home the resultant penalty for 1-0.

Banwell seemed to have a well drilled tactic of moving the ball across the back line before seeking the ball over the top for the pacey strikers to chase. This was dealt with superbly by the defensive unit of Callum Briggs, Dan Burnett, Dave Pullen and Sam Fowkes with excellent communication between themselves and stand in keeper Tim Seaman who was alert and quick off his line to sweep up anything that did find its way over the top. The home side, as has been the case all season, found their greatest success when stringing together 3 or 4 passes and this was the case again after Josh Bennett found a pocket of space as a result and unlocked the visitors defence with a deadly pass which the dangerous looking Tom Lucas, in a new position on the Left this week, tucked away in style with his weaker left foot for 2-0. Banwell then had a strong 10 minutes where they troubled the home side and duely got back into the game with a well taken goal giving Seaman no chance low down in the corner for 2-1.

Wrington’s strike partnership of Faulkner and McMullen look to be gelling more every week with the latter playing a through ball for the former who did what all good strikers do and put the ball across the goal keeper looking for the far corner. The visiting stopper, although making a good save, could only send the ball back out into the danger zone where Lucas pounced for his 2nd of the game calmly slotting home a tricky chance for 3-1 at half time.

HT 3-1

Matty Tancock, playing his first competitive game for over 2 years following an ACL was looking stronger and more confident as the game went on and his good work down the right hand side saw him square the ball across the six yard box for his manager to put the game beyond doubt only for a defender to nip in first and clear his lines. James Marshall then replaced Tancock for the last 35 minutes.

Banwell then again surprised the hosts with a goal resulting from a couple of scrappy challenges, which on another day may’ve resulted in a free kick for Wrington, and an opportunist finish for 3-2. Instead of panicking, the home side stood up and carried on with their passing game with Sam Fowkes and Tom Lucas combining on the left to release Fowkes to sprint behind the back line and produce a pinpoint cross over the goalkeeper to drop on the head of James Marshall who buried the chance with a sweetly timed header for 4-2. The fact that this was a carbon copy of his previous goal for the side illustrates the strikers’ excellent attacking positioning is no fluke.

Next followed a big point in the game with the again impressive Dave Pullen making one of his trademark runs forward eventually finding himself in a heap on the floor in the opposition penalty area. Some would suggest his bleeding nose may’ve been due to him being so far up the pitch whereas others would point towards the swinging elbow of the opposition defender catching him flush on the nose. The referee, who was brilliant all day, dealt with the situation well giving the home side plenty of time to treat the situation which ended up with the centre back going to A&E for a gluing and a reset.

With all of the one substitutions already being made, Wrington faced the last 20 minutes (plus 10 or so of injury time) with only 10 men. This meant new key partnerships throughout the core of the team with the Burnett brothers forming a fearsome duo at the back with Bennett given the equally fearsome prospect of having McMullen alongside him in midfield with the energetic Marshall doing the target man role on his own up top with Faulkner slotting in on the right.

Wrington battled well and actually still got forward at regular intervals with the likes of Briggs, Faulkner and Lucas intelligently selecting the right times to get forward. With the underlying task of seeing out the game for the points the main goal at this stage, the hosts actually could’ve gone further ahead with Marshall going close a couple of times with his head and then Faulkner missing late on with a chance he would normally have buried.

Wrington ended up seeing off the challenge of the enthusiastic Banwell side to win 4-2. You could make a strong case for any one of the 12 Wrington players being awarded Man of the Match so the easy and rather corny decision was made to award it to entire team this week for an outstanding team performance. Next up is a trip to Clevedon School to face Clapton-in-Gordano – a side that beat Wrington is the first game of the season.

FT 4-2

Wrington; Seaman, Briggs, Dan Burnett (c), Pullen, Fowkes, Tancock (Marshall, 55), Paul Burnett, Bennett, Lucas, McMullen, Faulkner.

N.B. We all wish Dave a speedy recovery and he will be greatly missed whilst out.