Match Report: Fleet Town v AFC Totton
STRONG DISPLAY GIVES RILEY FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Fleet Town 0 AFC Totton 2
By Sean McGlead at Calthorpe Park
Red Insure Cup 1st Round
AFC Totton had a break from their Evo-stik league (Southern) campaign as they made the relatively short trip to Northern Hampshire to face Fleet Town in the 1st round of the Red Insure Cup last night. Fleet Town play in our division and they are managed by Ex Stag Craig Davis.
Stags boss Steve Riley made seven changes to the starting line up from that that started against Bridgwater Town last Saturday. Riley also opted to give U18’s player Matt Randall a place on the bench.
At a wet and misty Calthorpe Park, the game started at quite a pace, with both sides looking determined to try and play good football on a pitch that looked to have plenty of zip to it, due to the damp conditions.
The first action came in the 1st minute of the game. A long ball forward saw Fleet’s Rob Carr enter a race with the Totton defenders, Carr got to the ball first just inside the box, as he got ready to shoot, Matt Renouf raced out to narrow the angle and Carr’s effort was blocked by the Stags keeper.
Totton’s No 9 Joe Maxwell was looking very busy and in a determined mood, Joe had two early efforts for Totton when he shot wide from just outside the box after two minutes, then a couple of minutes later he then had another shot at goal from a similar distance, but his effort on this occasion was too close to the centre of the goal to trouble Fleet Town’s keeper Jordan Westbrook.
One feature of Totton’s early play was how well the play was being spread, with Sam House on the right and James Jennings on the left seeing plenty of the ball.
The Stags created another chance on 9 minutes when Taylor Edwards crossed and Chris Onoufriou, who was playing a midfield role headed over the bar.
Fleet then gave Totton two scares in a matter of seconds when a sweeping move downfield saw Alex Charlick cross low from the left and Jack White was a whisker away from meeting it, then as the ball went out to the right, Rob Carr crossed the ball back in and Jack White put the ball wide of the near post.
The game was swinging to and fro. but you sensed that Totton had the edge, they were starting to get on top in the middle of the park with Nathan Hurst catching the eye early doors, Hurst was getting the foot in to break up Fleet’s possession and he was also trying to surge forward to back up Edwards and Maxwell when he could.
Totton again put together a move that saw Taylor Edwards get in on goal and test Westbrook after 12 minutes, then just a moment later The Stags took the lead when Joe MAXWELL was quickest to a ball from the right and he span and hit a shot low into the bottom corner of the net from around eight yards out.
Fleet reacted well to going behind, by creating a few openings, firstly Callum Stanley almost connected with a left wing cross, then Fleet’s No4 Ben Smith hit a scorching shot from 20 yards that Renouf tipped over.
Then after 21 minutes Rob Carr picked the ball up on the run, he carried the ball across the edge of the box before dragging a shot wide of the right hand post.
Totton then started to re-assert their domination and there were a number of opportunities that followed for the Stags, Joe Maxwell turned supplier when he crossed for Edwards, who shot wide. Then Maxwell, Bullpit and Edwards again, all had shots wide.
The Stags work rate and attitude was spot on, and the game was a good watch for those hardy souls in the stands, and on the side lines. Totton were now well on top, with their midfield running the show.
The next Totton chance came when James Jennings tried his luck from 35 yards, Jennings shot caught a deflection that gave the effort a bit of height, as the ball started to drop it looked like it might just drop just under the cross bar, when the ball did come down, Jordan Westbrook managed to get both hands on it.
Then Totton put themselves in a great position when young 17 year old centre half Dan Beckles made a run forward before dinking a ball into Taylor Edwards path, inside the box. EDWARDS then took the ball around keeper Westbrook and put it into the empty net to make it 2-0, an excellent finish to round off some great play by young Beckles.
Some hesitant defending by Fleet almost allowed Totton to increase their lead further, when Joe Maxwell nipped in and shaped up to hit a shot towards the right of the goal, but Jordan Westbrook stuck out an arm and tipped the ball wide of his left hand post.
Totton’s dominance was temporarily interrupted when Fleet reminded them that the game was still very much alive. After a bit of a goal mouth scramble, Jack White hooked the ball over the bar from about eight yards.
Then with half time almost upon us, Sam House made a weaving run down the right before cutting in towards goal and hitting a powerful shot that hit the crossbar, with what indeed proved to be the last effort of the first half.
Half time…. Fleet Town 0 AFC Totton 2
Fleet started the half with some real purpose, they had a bit more of the ball in the first 10 minutes or so of the 2nd half, but without creating much in front of goal, in fact in terms of chances the 2nd half started quiet at both ends. The only efforts on goal between the 45th and 65th minutes were a long range tame effort by Sam House on 53 minutes, and a Taylor Edwards header wide from a James Jennings cross after 63 minutes.
On 66 minutes Fleet striker Jack White let fly with a fierce drive that tested Matt Renouf, who had to tip the effort wide, but Fleet never offered any more clear cut chances until the closing minutes.
Prior to this Totton had the better of proceedings with their exciting prospect Matt Randall making a run before shooting into the side netting, then a few moments later substitute Zac Mouland let fly with a scorching shot that Westbrook did well to push over the bar.
As the game entered the last 10 minutes, there was another fine run by Matt Randall, who put the ball into the path of Taylor Edwards, Edwards then hit a shot that went wide, with the help of a deflection.
With just a few moments left Nathan Hurst tried his luck but his shot went over the Fleet Town cross bar.
Then Fleet had two really good late chances when Rob Carr pulled a fine save out of Matt Renouf, then Alex Charlick hit a sweet volley that tested the Totton keeper once more.
Then in the 90th minute young the Stags sub Matt Randall made a run through the middle of the Fleet defence, the young Stag then had a shot that went over the crossbar.
Referee Jim Patterson then blew the full time whistle to send the Stags through to the 2nd round of the Cup.
Full Time…..Fleet Town 0 AFC Totton 2