The Peacocks extended their undefeated Evo-Stik League run to 17 games after beating Bishops Cleeve 4-0 at a chilly Viridor Stadium yesterday afternoon (3rd February). On another heavy pitch, Town did the necessary against the division's bottom side who rarely threatened. The hosts took the lead after 18 minutes when Matt Wright looped a header over Cleeve keeper Sam Gilder after Ryan Brett's corner had been flicked up. Wright was also involved in Town's second goal eight minutes before half time, being pulled down by Ben Tunnicliff to earn a penalty which Dan Sullivan comfortably despatched. The second half was only two minutes in when the Peacocks were awarded another spot kick when Wright was again hauled down and Sullivan duly scored his second and Town's third of the afternoon. Pierce Mitchell completed the scoring after 71 minutes, taking Matt Buse's pass in his stride before steering home past Gilder. Further chances for Town came either side of the final goal as they eased to victory over the visitors who finished the game with ten men after Joe Bates was sent off three minutes from time. The win keeps Town eight points clear at the top of the table as they hope to keep the momentum going when they go to Paulton Rovers on Tuesday evening. Match report can be viewed HERE and match highlights on Peacocks TV can be seen HERE. Match photos from club photographers Tim Norbury and Colin Andrews can be viewed HERE and HERE.
Reaction - manager Leigh Robinson commented:" A convincing win on another heavy pitch. I think everyone involved in non-league football right now is fed up of the wet weather and just want the pitches to start drying out. We were functional without being particularly flamboyant in the first half today but what pleased me most is how we kept our foot on the pedal straight after half time whereas earlier in the season we often started the second period really badly and let teams back in the game. Second half attacking the slightly drier top end we played some good football and created a lot of chances. A good week with two home wins, plenty of goals, two good crowds and we now move on to two testing away games next week."
Reaction - goalkeeper Lloyd Irish, making his 250th Peacocks' appearance,said:" Another important three points for us against another potential banana skin. Against Shortwood we saw how easy it is to slip up against the hard working teams near the bottom of the league and if you don't take your chances it can get frustrating but Wrighty put in a great captain's performance yesterday and got us off the mark early. We've got a good team spirit now and although we haven't been at our best recently we've been getting good results and taking our chances as well as defending well and today was another example of that. Kev and Simon did a great job getting the game on again; hopefully the weather improves now as the heavy pitches must be taking it out of the outfield players' legs. It was nice for them to have a midweek break last week but as a keeper you don't feel the heavy pitch. Every game is important now and we've got to make sure we keep picking up the points to get us closer to where we want to be. It was nice to get a clean sheet on my 250th game too, although the most important thing is obviously getting the three points."
It’s top versus bottom in the Evo-Stik League tomorrow (3rd February) when the Peacocks welcome Bishops Cleeve to the Viridor Stadium, kick-off 3.00pm. Last weekend’s win over Didcot stretched Town’s lead at the summit to eight points with a minimum of two games in hand on all the top ten sides bar Bideford. Bishops Cleeve meanwhile have struggled this campaign, having won just three times in 25 league outings to leave them six points adrift at the bottom. However lowly Barnstaple’s win at 2nd placed Salisbury last Saturday demonstrated there are no certainties in this division. The Mitres have also shown improved form of late, two of their three wins this season coming last month with victories over Mangotsfield and Slimbridge and only losing to promotion chasers Bideford by a solitary last minute goal. Town won the corresponding fixture 3-1 at Kayte Lane in September so will be aiming to complete another league double.
The Peacocks name the same squad as last weekend, with Exeter City loanee Joel Randall again not available as he is playing for their Academy in an EFL Youth Cup semi-final against Oxford United. However he will be available going forward after tomorrow starting with Tuesday’s trip to Paulton Rovers. Brett Trowbridge has had a successful operation on his fractured eye socket he suffered in an accidental collision in the game at Mangotsfield last month. As a result he will not play again this season and we wish him a speedy and full recovery. Looking ahead to the Bishops Cleeve match, manager Leigh Robinson said:” Hopefully we can capitalise tomorrow on a good win last week and try to keep building our lead at the top. It’s one of those games where everyone will be expecting us to win but Bishops Cleeve have given us some good games in the last few season and are more than capable so we need to turn up with the same focus and determination as last week.”
A discounted admission fee of only £1 is on offer tomorrow for all NHS and Emergency Service staff who will just need to show their ID card at the turnstile.
It's now 16 Evo-Stik League games unbeaten for the Peacocks after they beat Didcot Town 3-1 at the Viridor Stadium yesterday afternoon (27th January). The win over the 4th placed Railwaymen stemmed from a burst of three Town goals in 16 first half minutes which effectively settled the contest on a heavy pitch which had been worked on all morning to ensure the game went ahead. Didcot started off the better side but it was Town who gradually got on top, with Ollie Chamberlain having a goal disallowed for offside before the deadlock was broken on 27 minutes when a break saw Chamberlain feed the ball onto Pierce Mitchell on the right side of the box and he fired a shot across Leigh Bedwell into the opposite corner. Dan Sullivan then flicked on a cross to Chamberlain who sidestepped a defender to steer home number two after 38 minutes and Sullivan himself got on the scoresheet two minutes before the break when Matt Wright's pass found him in space on the right and his drive past Bedwell replicated Mitchell's earlier strike. With play becoming scrappy at times, Sam Barder hit the outside of the post for the visitors after the break before they reduced the arrears with eight minutes remaining when George Reid slid into net Marlon Agyakwa's cross from close range. With results elsewhere being favourable, the Peacocks have now extended their lead at the top of the table to eight points with games in hand. Match highlights can be seen on Peacocks TV HERE and match report can be viewed HERE. Match photos from club photographers Tim Norbury and Colin Andrews can be seen HERE and HERE.
Reaction - manager Leigh Robinson remarked:" It was a really good win in very tough conditions with the pitch being so heavy but Kev and Simon did great to even get the game on. You could see that we struggled to get going a bit in the first 20 minutes and not quite in our usual rhythm with the lack of games recently but once we scored we never looked back. The second half was maybe a bit more open than we would have liked and both teams could have had two or three more in the second half but I think a lot of that was due to the increased error count on the heavy pitch. A good job done and we look to keep pushing on to extend our lead as there's plenty of work to do yet."
After having their last two Evo-Stik League fixtures postponed due to waterlogged pitches, the Peacocks will hope to resume their campaign with the visit of Didcot Town to the Viridor Stadium tomorrow afternoon (27th January), kick-off 3.00pm. Despite their ten day break since winning 1-0 at Mangotsfield last week, Town still sit five points clear at the top of the table and with two games in hand over second placed Salisbury, but face a difficult match tomorrow in their continued pursuit of an automatic promotion spot. Since the Peacocks scorched to a 4-0 win in the reverse fixture in early November, Didcot have lost only once in twelve games, a run of form which has elevated them to fourth position. They come into the game after scoring six goals in their last two outings including a 2-0 victory over fellow high fliers Bristol Manor Farm last Saturday.
Shane White will finally hope to resume action for Town tomorrow following his three match ban while new signing Keith Emmerson is also in the squad along with Matt Buse who has recovered from a knock. Another recent new addition Joel Randall however has Exeter City commitments and is not available and Brett Trowbridge is likely to be out for the rest of the season as he faces an operation on a fractured eye socket. Ben Palmer has also left the Peacocks and signed for Bideford. We thank Ben for his efforts during his time at the club and wish him well for the future.
Although there are still some wet patches, the pitch is looking in better shape and has dried well today so all being well there should be no concerns over tomorrow’s game going ahead.
Rearranged dates have been fixed for Town’s three recent Evo-Stik League postponements. Wimborne Town will now come to the Viridor Stadium on Tuesday 13 February while Bideford will visit a week later on Tuesday 20 February. The Peacocks will then travel to Barnstaple Town on Tuesday 27 February, with all games kicking off at 7.45pm.
Following a meeting of the Southern League Board yesterday, Town have been expelled from the BigFreeBet.com Challenge Cup after failing to raise a side for the 3rd Round tie at Frome Town earlier this month.
The Peacocks face yet another fixture rearrangement after their Evo-Stik League game with Wimborne Town scheduled for this evening (23rd January) at the Viridor Stadium was called off following a pitch inspection this morning. Further rain during the early hours only compounded the waterlogging problem with the pitch already saturated in large areas, meaning the decision to postpone was a formality. This leaves three fixtures to be rescheduled, with new dates to be announced shortly for this match plus the home meeting with Bideford and the away game at Barnstaple Town.
The wet weather of the weekend could scupper the Peacocks’ hopes of returning to action in the Evo-Stik League with the visit of Wimborne Town to the Viridor Stadium tomorrow evening (23rd January), kick-off 7.45pm. A pitch inspection has been planned for 9.30am tomorrow to assess whether the game can go ahead but at present prospects are not rated promising. Chairman and Head Groundsman Kevin Sturmey remarked:” 70% of the pitch is currently saturated and there is still standing water at the bottom end of the ground which resembled a lake yesterday. Chances are not great even without any more rain but if the wet weather forecast early on tomorrow materialises, then it is hard to see how the game can go ahead."
This will be the third attempt to play the fixture, the original date in November having to be rescheduled due to Town’s Buildbase FA Trophy replay at Beaconsfield and the second go at playing falling foul of a waterlogged pitch just before Christmas. Whilst the Peacocks were kicking their heels at the weekend following their game at Barnstaple being postponed, Wimborne returned to form with a 5-1 thrashing of Cirencester after suffering three successive defeats in January. They are well placed for a play-off berth, sitting in sixth spot with five wins on the road from 12 away fixtures, so Town will need to be on their game if the match gets the green light. Brett Trowbridge is out with a face injury but Shane White is available after his three game ban and also in the squad is new signing Keith Emmerson plus youngster Joel Randall from Exeter City.
As reported on our Social Media channels earlier this evening, we are pleased to welcome Joel Randall to the club on a work experience deal for the remainder of the season. The 18 year old midfielder has been with the Exeter Academy for several years and made his first team debut for the Grecians in the defeat to Chelsea Under 21’s in the Checkatrade.com Trophy in November. His arrival comes hot on the heels of Keith Emmerson joining the club from Farnborough last week. Commenting on the two new faces, manager Leigh Robinson said:” They are two good signings for us at a key time. Keith has been there and done it in non-league terms and with his job in the Army is absolutely as fit as a flea. Joel has come to us to learn the rigours of men’s football as he’s been excelling in the Under 18’s at Exeter. He’s a strong runner, good 1 v 1 and with an eye for goal so I’m sure the supporters will enjoy watching him play.”
Following a pitch inspection at Mill Road this morning, today's Evo-Stik League game at Barnstaple Town has been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch. A new date for the fixture will be announced soon. The Peacocks are next due to be in action at home to Wimborne Town on Tuesday evening (23rd January), kick-off 7.45pm.
The Peacocks are on the road again in the Evo-Stik League when they travel to Barnstaple Town tomorrow (20th January), kick-off 3.00pm. Tuesday’s win at Mangotsfield put Town eight points clear at the summit and they will hope to maintain that buffer with victory in North Devon tomorrow. Barum have had a difficult season so far, currently lying one place off the bottom of the table and without a league win in 14 games since beating bottom side Bishops Cleeve in mid-October. They have also only gained one league victory at Mill Road this campaign whilst the Peacocks remain undefeated in away fixtures this season including a 4-2 win at Barnstaple in the BigFreeBet.com Challenge Cup in November. They also saw off Barum by a 3-0 margin in the reverse league fixture last month at the Viridor Stadium.
Town welcome back Shane White after the completion of his three match ban and Matt Buse who has missed the last two matches through injury, whilst new signing Keith Emmerson is also in the squad after his transfer was processed today. Brett Trowbridge though is likely to be out for some time after suffering a face injury at Mangotsfield in midweek.
After the recent wet weather there will be a pitch inspection in the morning with the outcome expected by 10am.