Match Report: AFC Totton v Bishops Cleeve
HOLLICK’S STAGS FINISH THEIR HOME CAMPAIGN OFF WITH A BIG WIN
AFC Totton 5 Bishops Cleeve 2
By Sean McGlead at The Testwood Stadium
The Stags rounded off their home fixtures for 2014/15 with a fixture against Bishops Cleeve. The Gloucestershire side were almost certainly relegated even before days game started. Cleeve needed to win both of their remaining fixtures and in the process claw back a goal difference that was 23 worse than the side immediately above them which was Wantage Town.
The Stags announced around 2.30pm their new management team would be Steve Hollick as 1st team manager assisted by Lee Burch (Head coach), Dave Rowland (Club coach) and Jamie Cotton (Goalkeeping Coach). Steve began his time as the permanent boss by naming a starting eleven with just one change to the side that were beaten 3-1 at Bridgwater Town last week, Nathan Hurst came in in place of Jake Rawkins who was named on the bench for today’s game. Michael Snellgrove, Dan Beckles and James Jennings were the other substitutes for Totton.
Just prior to kick off Liam Gilbert was announced as the Stags player of the season for 2014/15 as voted for by the AFC Totton supporters.
Gilbert finished with 39.2% of the vote, 2nd was Liam Hibberd with 16.4 % and 3rd was Steve Mowthorpe with 13.9%
Totton had been without a win in 13 games, but they set about Bishops Cleeve from the off with Liam Gilbert pushing a ball through for Craig Feeney to run onto, Feeney hit a shot from inside the box that saw Cleeve keeper Steve Benbow pull off a save that spilled straight to Nathaniel Sherborne around 10 yards out, but Sherborne hit the rebound way over the crossbar.
The Stags kept taking the game to the visitors and after 9 minutes they were ahead through Craig FEENEY. Nathan Hurst was fouled out on the right, close to the touchline earning the Stags a free kick. Player of the season Liam Gilbert put the free kick over towards the back post and the ball reached Feeney, despite Bishops Cleeve defenders being close by, Feeney just seemed to lean forward and head the ball inside the left hand post.
Totton kept pressing and they were awarded another free kick in a wide position which once again was taken by Liam Gilbert, this time though Gilberts free kick went over everybody and wide of the far post.
The visitors started to string a few passes together and they produced a decent chance on 22 minutes, the move ended with Edilson Antonio putting over a left wing cross which Mike Sholly met at the back of the six yard box, but Sholly’s shot hit the side netting.
On 24 minutes the Stags doubled their lead when Nathan Hurst slipped a pass through to Jack HOEY who found himself in acres of space and the former Bashley man simply slid the ball under Cleeve keeper Steve Benbow from around 10 yards out.
The Stags increased their lead after 32 minutes with Craig Feeney this time the supplier of a low right wing cross, as the ball came into the six yard box Nathan HURST just seemed to wonder in unnoticed between two Bishops Cleeve defenders and simply tap the ball over the line from a couple of yards out.
The Stags top scorer Craig Feeney could have had his 2nd goal of the afternoon on 42 minutes after Jack Hoey played him in on goal, on this occasion though Feeney’s finishing let him down and he blasted his effort well over the crossbar.
On 44 minutes the visitors produced a move that ended with a cross from Jordan Bryan that was met by Mike Sholley who was allowed the space to head home unchallenged from close range.
Right on the stroke of half time Totton restored their three goal advantage after a high ball into their box was not dealt with by centre half Dan Sherry and in a flash Craig FEENEY was onto the bouncing ball and he lashed it into the roof of the net from around 16 yards out.
Half Time ………………….AFC Totton 4 Bishops Cleeve 1
The Stags make a half time substitution bringing on Michael Snellgrove for Ellis White.
Right at the start of the 2nd half Totton should have increased their lead further when Craig Feeney was put through on goal in a one on one situation. As Feeney entered the left hand side of the 18 yard box the Totton striker seemed to take an eternity to make up his mind what to do and in the end his effort was straight at Steve Benbow who smothered Feeney’s effort.
Bishops Cleeve made a double change bringing on Ed Major and Nathan Summers for Craig Hopkins and Sol Wheatley.
There was a period of play without much action, the only notable happenings were Jake Burgess being booked for Totton and the visitors making another substitution bringing on Ryan Shaw for Craig Hopkins.
On 64 minutes Totton made it 5-1 when another Liam Gilbert free kick from a wide position was floated into the box where Nathan Hurst arrived between two defenders to stick the ball into the net from close range.
Liam Gilbert took a free kick from just inside the Bishops Cleeve half and Gilbert opted to play the ball down the left hand channel for Nathaniel Sherborne, who was in plenty of space, Sherbs then headed towards the box and let fly with a low shot that flew across the face of goal and wide of the far post.
On 70 minutes Jack Hoey was replaced by James Jennings for Totton.
On 73 minutes Bishops Cleeve produced a consolation goal out of nothing. Cleeve No7 Jordan Bryan found himself 35 yards from goal in a central position, the Cleeve midfielder decided to let fly with a thumping shot that hit the middle of the crossbar, as the ball bounced out it was pounced upon by No 10 Arron Drake who slipped the ball into the left hand side of the net from six yards out with Steve Mowthorpe stranded.
Totton then brought on Jake Rawkins for Nathaniel Sherborne.
Totton finished the game with a couple more chances, Nathan Hurst set up substitute James Jennings who wasted the chance by blasting over the bar. Then Gilbert put over a cross that Stuart Mott came in to meet but the Stags centre half put his effort wide.
Full Time……………………AFC Totton 5 Bishops Cleeve 2
The AFC Totton line up was…………………..
2-White (16-Snellgrove 45 mins)
8-Burgess – Yellow Card
10-Hoey ( 14-Jennings 70 mins )
11-Sherborne (15-Rawkins 76 minutes)
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