Beer Albion Reserves took revenge for their 2-0 defeat at North Tawton three weeks ago with a 4-2 win in the 3rd Division of the Macron Devon and Exeter League at the Furzebrake on Saturday writes Richard Honnor. It was a sporting, entertaining contest referee’ed well by John Blakesley, in fact, a great advert for grassroots football. The visitors belied their foot-of-the-table position forcing the young Fishermen’s second string to work hard for the 3 points.
Beer started the game strongly with John Cooper and Alex Hunt imposing themselves in midfield. Up front, the pace of Taylor Rooke and Kyle Gould was stretching the Tawts defence and only a well-timed interception prevented Rooke opening Beer’s account on 9 minutes after he had rounded to keeper. Another good opportunity went a-begging on 20 minutes when Billy Long chipped a through ball to Rooke whose shot across the face of the goal was followed in by Ryan King who hit the outside of the post from an acute angle.
The Fishermen were totally dominant at this stage and deservedly went ahead on 24 minutes. Rooke chased a through ball from Hunt and although the keeper advancing off his line got the first contact, the ball ricocheted off Rooke’s foot into the net. Four minutes later Beer were 2-0 ahead when a well-drilled free kick from Josh Moughton was headed across goal by Alex Hunt to King who headed home via the underside of the crossbar.
Beer had the ball in the back of the net on 30 minutes but the referee was quick to spot that the ball had been punched in by Gould. The Fishermen then took their foot off the gas and allowed North Tawton to get back into the game. Tall midfielder Edward Hillier began to get some space in midfield linking the play well between defence and attack.
On 44 minutes the Fishermen paid the price for sloppy defending and conceded an unnecessary free kick on the right flank. The kick was delivered with pace to the near post where Ali Kamel executed an unstoppable header past Beer keeper Henry Bartlett to reduce the deficit to 2-1. On the stroke of half time the Fishermen felt somewhat aggrieved when a claim for a penalty was turned down by the referee who, to be fair, was close to the action.
After Beer spurned a couple chances early on through Gould and Harwood, the rest of the second half was evenly contested. North Tawton came close on 62 minutes when a shot fizzed across the Beer goal after the ball was given away. Then on 68 minutes, the battling visitors drew level through another Kamel header this time from inside the 6 yard box as keeper Bartlett failed to come off his line to claim a high free kick.
The visitors’ joy was short-lived however as just one minute later 2-goal hero Kamel became the villain when he conceded a penalty for handball. Rooke notched his 2nd with an unstoppable penalty to give Beer a 3-1 lead. This goal settled the Beer nerves and they added a fourth goal on 81 minutes. It was a fine goal on the break from Jay Catley who ran with the ball purposefully from half way and hit a clean finish past the advancing North Tawton keeper to make the final score line 4-2 in Beer’s favour.
Beer skipper Josh Moughton took the man-of-the-match honour from sponsors Dolphin Hotel Beer for a fine display at centre back, winning most of the aerial battles and providing a steadying influence particularly after his young side had conceded a two-goal lead.
After being without a game this weekend, Beer 1st’s are back in Premier Division action next Saturday when they are at home to Seaton in the local East Devon derby. Kick-off at the Furzebrake is at 2:15pm and a large crowd is expected as always. Match sponsor is The Cloth Shop, Seaton & Crewkerne.
Beer 2nds are without a game.