The Peacocks are through to the 1st Round Proper of the Buildbase FA Trophy after a terrific 3-2 victory over Concord Rangers at the Viridor Stadium yesterday afternoon (25th November). A breathtaking tie seesawed between the two teams but ultimately it proved a tale of two keepers to determine who progressed to the next round on 16th December. Facing a side from two leagues higher, Town made a wonderful start with the opening goal after just five minutes. Early pressure saw Pierce Mitchell's shot not held by Concord keeper Louis Wells and when Ross Staley laid the ball back across, Matt Wright was there to steer into an open goal. Concord hit back, with Femi Akinwande driving a shot against the post and then being brought down by Ben Palmer for a penalty. Lloyd Irish pulled off a great save though to deny Steve Cawley from the spot. Cawley made amends when he pulled the visitors level on 29 minutes, converting Ben Greenhalgh's cross from the left at the back post. The woodwork then denied Town after Wright saw his header cannon off the post following a Dan Sullivan cross minutes before the break. The pacy Concord side began to get on top after the break and went ahead on 62 minutes with a cracking Harry Lee strike from 25 yards. However Town responded and equalised after 74 minutes. Wells made a brilliant save to keep out Ollie Chamberlain's header but when the ensuing corner wasn't properly cleared Ross Staley collected to rifle home a fine strike from the edge of the box. Town then grabbed the winning goal two minutes later when Wells let a Matt Buse shot escape from his grasp to roll over the line to send the home crowd delirious. Irish made a couple more excellent saves to keep Concord at bay and leave the Peacocks looking forward to Monday's draw for the next round. Match report can be viewed HERE and match photos from Tim Norbury can be viewed HERE. Match highlights can be seen on Peacocks TV HERE while post-match interviews with manager Leigh Robinson and Man of the Match Lloyd Irish can be seen HERE and HERE.
Reaction - manager Leigh Robinson commented:" Another brilliant cup day at the Viridor and a fantastic achievement to reach the first round of the FA Trophy after last year's FA Cup success. So proud of the players and really happy for the people who run the club as together we have achieved so much over the last 18 months, creating wonderful memories and really making people sit up and take notice of Taunton Town. It was a hell of a cup tie and a great spectacle for the crowd. The best thing that happened to us was their second goal as it kicked us into life and it became a bit ‘all or nothing’. A great example today of the spirit and character that we have in the dressing room. Of course we had a bit of luck with the winning goal but that’s cup football and fortune favours the brave as they say. Let’s hope for a good draw in the next round and enjoy another good occasion."
Reaction - match winner Matt Buse remarked:" We started the game really well, pressing with good intensity and playing some nice football when we created a couple of good chances and deservedly took the lead. However when they went ahead in the second half we had to dig in and we showed great character to come back and get the win. Lloyd was outstanding but every player put in a great shift, which we knew would be required against a good side and sometimes you earn a bit of luck which came with the last goal. As players we are delighted for everyone involved, it brings prize money in and rewards the club for their great support. Once again we would like to thank the supporters who were fantastic. We will now look forward to the draw."
The Peacocks continue their Buildbase FA Trophy campaign when they welcome National League South side Concord Rangers to the Viridor Stadium for a 3rd Round Qualifying tie tomorrow afternoon (25th November), kick-off 3.00pm. Town have already played five games in the competition to reach this stage, with replay victories necessary over AFC Totton and Beaconsfield Town sandwiching an upset against Southern Premier Merthyr Town. It would be an even bigger shock should Town manage to overcome tomorrow’s opponents who sit two levels higher in the non-league system. Concord were only formed 40 years ago from a boys’ team who originally played on a pitch close to Concord Beach on Canvey Island in Essex. Since then they have enjoyed a climb up through various Essex leagues and then the Isthmian before gaining promotion to the National League South for the 2013-14 season. They are currently quite far down the table in 18th spot and have yet to win a league game away from home this term but are unbeaten in their last eight fixtures, seven consecutive draws coming to an end with a 4-2 win over Chippenham Town last Saturday.
Town however will take a great deal of confidence from their recent form, a 14 game unbeaten sequence coming to an end in midweek after the vast majority of the first team squad were rested for the Somerset Premier Cup reverse to Weston-super-Mare. The Peacocks were in superb shape last weekend when winning at Evesham in the Evo-Stik League and will hope for a similar kind of performance tomorrow to give themselves a chance to progress and earn £5,000 in the process. Apart from the prize money, there is the incentive of a place in the 1st Round Proper for tomorrow’s winners, one round further than Town managed last season when they conceded in the last minute to suffer a narrow defeat at another National League South side Chelmsford City.
Manager Leigh Robinson will have the same squad available as last Saturday with the exception of Ryan Brett who serves a one game suspension after accruing five bookings. The Town boss remarked:” It’s a good tie tomorrow and an occasion we are all looking forward to. After reaching the FA Cup First Round Proper last year, if we were to make the FA Trophy 1st Round the season after this would be a hell of an achievement. Of course we’ll be the underdogs but we had success last year at home against sides from a similar level so it can be done but we have to be completely at our best from 1 to 11 in order to give ourselves a chance.”
A radically changed and extremely youthful Town side were beaten 3-0 by Weston-super-Mare in the 2nd Round of the Somerset Premier Cup at the Viridor Stadium yesterday evening (21st November). Fielding four debutants and only three recognised first teamers, the Peacocks put up a spirited showing against their more experienced visitors and were still in the game at the break after a goalless first half in which Weston missed several opportunities, most notably when Jake Reid directed over from close range. Ben Palmer forced Liam Kingston to turn his shot aside when play resumed before the visitors scored three in six minutes to seal their passage. Jason Pope opened the scoring on 52 minutes when his shot from a narrow angle was deflected in and Jake Reid then set up Irnti Rapai to slot home a second three minutes later. Jarrad Welch converted Pope's cross on 58 minutes to add another and despite further attacks from Weston there were no more goals. Match report can be viewed HERE and match photos from club photographers Tim Norbury and Colin Andrews can be viewed HERE and HERE. Unfortunately we are unable to provide match highlights on Peacocks TV for this game.
Reaction - Man of the Match Ben Palmer commented:" Despite the result there were positives to take from the game. It was an opportunity to give several youngsters the chance to make their debuts in a side that included seven players under 20. There were limited chances for either team in the first half, we worked hard and competed with Weston, deservedly going in level at the break. However their experience showed in the second half and as we tired, opportunities arose and were clinically taken."
Town continue their defence of the Somerset Premier Cup when they entertain Weston-super-Mare in a 2nd Round tie tomorrow evening (21st November), kick-off 7.45pm. The game is the first of two against National League South opposition in the space of a week with Concord Rangers coming to the Viridor Stadium this coming Saturday for a Buildbase FA Trophy meeting. Weston currently lie in 11th spot in the South Division and are on a good run of form lately, winning their last four league fixtures including a victory at leaders Braintree on Saturday.
Tomorrow’s match is a repeat of last season’s final which Town won comfortably 4-2 but regardless of the strength of the team Weston play, the Peacocks will be hard pressed to achieve a similar result in light of the fact the vast majority of the first team squad are being rested. Only goalkeeper Lloyd Irish, Ben Palmer and Chris McGrath are involved tomorrow with fringe and youth players making up the remainder of the team. In come Shaun Anthony, Tom Stone and Matt Trump who all featured in the previous round against Ashton & Backwell United while Paul Grant, Kyle Winter and Kyle Lazowski, a trio of players from our football development and education partner Bridgwater and Taunton College, will also feature. Rhys Ford who was a member of the squad for last season’s triumphant Somerset Premier Cup campaign is also included along with Callum McGrath (son of Chris) who both attend Richard Huish College along with Stone. Manager Leigh Robinson remarked: ” With the FA Trophy tie on Saturday and a packed schedule from now until New Year, we have no choice but to rest the first team squad tomorrow and have a look at some young players. It will of course be tough against a National League South side but the result isn’t important as we’re just looking for some young lads to show that they’ve got what we want for the future.”
The Peacocks extended their unbeaten run to 14 games with a highly impressive 3-0 victory at promotion rivals Evesham United yesterday afternoon (18th November). The meeting with the 3rd placed Robins was envisaged to be a hard test for Town but they made light of the challenge with an excellent display which saw them two goals up inside the opening quarter of an hour. Dan Sullivan received a Ross Staley cross from the left to control and fire home past Kevin Sawyer after just eight minutes and then Matt Wright set up Pierce Mitchell to drive a shot inside the post to double Town's lead after 13 minutes before Sawyer kept his side in the game just before half time with saves from Sullivan and Staley to restrict Town to a two goal advantage at the interval. Evesham pressed in the second half but had no change from a terrific Town defence while the visitors continued to threaten and secured the points six minutes from time when Staley was gifted the ball and his pass saw Sullivan convert with ease for a 3-0 win which sees the Peacocks stretch their lead at the top of the table to five points following results elsewhere. Match report can be viewed HERE, match highlights can be seen on Peacocks TV HERE and match photos from club photographer Colin Andrews can be viewed HERE.
Reaction - manager Leigh Robinson said:" A great win and brilliant performance to go with it which caps a hell of a good week. We came out of the blocks fast and got two early goals which basically enabled us to dictate the rest of the game relatively untroubled. Dan Sullivan was brilliant again with his work rate and finishing but this was a really good all round team performance and you can see the spirit and chemistry is fantastic at the moment. I know I have mentioned this a lot recently but again the support today was magnificent. I swear there was a period before half time when the fans chanted for 20 minutes non-stop and the players fed off this. We can now have a rest this week, hardly any of the first team will play in midweek against Weston as we of course have to prioritise the FA Trophy game and after this we have a packed schedule."
Reaction - Shane White commented:" We obviously started very well and getting two early goals was massive for us. Sully took both his goals superbly, he's added that extra bit of quality in the box and Pierce has been flying in the past few weeks. I think it puts out a statement to the rest of the division and keeps us on a fantastic run which I'm sure if we keep playing like we have been can go on for a very long time. It was also nice to get back to back clean sheets in the league."
Town return to their pursuit of promotion in the Evo-Stik League when they make the journey to Evesham United tomorrow afternoon (18th November), kick-off 3.00pm. The Peacocks are in a healthy position at the top of the West Division table following a run of five league games unbeaten and 13 in all competitions, lying three points clear of second placed Bristol Manor Farm with two games in hand. Evesham, who sit one place lower in third, are again among one of the sides touted to be there or thereabouts come the end of the season but have enjoyed more success on the road than at home so far with five wins and only one defeat from eight fixtures including impressive victories at Bideford, Bristol Manor Farm (by a 5-1 margin) and most recently at Slimbridge on Wednesday evening. Their record at the Spiers and Hartwell Jubilee Stadium is more moderate with three wins and three defeats from eight matches.
The Peacocks welcome back the four regulars who missed Monday’s thrilling win at Beaconsfield in the Buildbase FA Trophy replay. Ben Adelsbury and Ben Palmer had to miss the trip due to work commitments whilst Pierce Mitchell (dead leg) and Dan Sullivan (knee) were not fit to travel but all return for the trip up the M5. Sullivan may require a fitness test although he is likely to play. Young centre half Tom Stone who performed impressively after coming on as a substitute at Beaconsfield remains in the squad but assistant manager Michael Meaker is attending a wedding. Manager Leigh Robinson commented:” It is undoubtedly one of our hardest fixtures of the season tomorrow. Evesham have had a bit of a mixed bag of results so far but will definitely be fully motivated against us. Spirit is great though after Monday and we’ve had a good rest so fingers crossed for a good performance and result.”
Three months of the season gone and two awards already! Town have been awarded the October Club of the Month Award for the West Division by the Evo-Stik League South following a month in which they remained unbeaten in their eight games played, with two league wins out of three plus four triumphs in cup competitions. The October award follows the Peacocks also winning the accolade for August when they won all five games played. An engraved trophy is given to the winner each month.
The Peacocks continue on the road to success off the pitch as well as on it with the supply of a new club car courtesy of our Official Vehicle Partner Cotford Car Sales. The new vehicle which can be seen above with Ashley Spurway from Cotford Car Sales and Chairman Kevin Sturmey has been branded with signs courtesy of Carly Press, another one of the club’s Official Partners.
Business owner Ashley Spurway remarked:” Cotford Car Sales are proud to be continuing the vehicle sponsorship with Taunton Town FC. The new car is a seven seat variant which will we hope be most useful for carrying additional club personnel or equipment that the previous car could not manage. Cotford Car Sales and Taunton Town FC, The Driving Force In Local Football!!”
Sturmey added:” I am delighted that Ashley Spurway of Cotford Car Sales continues to provide the club with a sponsored vehicle as our Official Vehicle Partner. He has recently upgraded the car which is fantastic as there is plenty of space for kit and also trips to another Business Partner Booker for our supplies. It is great to be building partnerships in the community and the club continues to add more Business Partners to our network. A big thank you to Ashley from all of us at the Viridor Stadium as these partnerships allow us to build the club and help us to realise our goals and ambitions.”
The Peacocks held their nerve to beat Beaconsfield Town 7-6 on penalties yesterday evening (13th November) after their Buildbase FA Trophy replay had ended level at 1-1 following extra time. The result now means Town will face National League South side Concord Rangers at the Viridor Stadium in the 3rd Round Qualifying on Saturday 25th November following the draw made earlier today. An understrength Town, missing four players from Saturday, struggled to make an impression in the first half and found themselves trailing at the break after Dan Brown had put the Rams ahead from close range on 17 minutes. The Peacocks raised their game in the second half as they searched for an equaliser and they were finally rewarded six minutes from time when Matt Wright headed home Les Afful's cross. With the scores tied at 1-1 after 90 minutes, another half hour of extra time was played but despite the Peacocks being well on top they couldn't find a winner. Both sides were successful with their first six penalties, with Les Afful, Shane White, Ryan Brett, Ollie Chamberlain, Wright and Buse all on target for Town. Beaconsfield then fired their seventh spot kick over the bar, leaving Ross Staley to fire home the deciding penalty. Match report can be viewed HERE, match highlights on Peacocks TV can be seen HERE and match photos from Colin Andrews can be viewed HERE.
Reaction - manager Leigh Robinson remarked:" A monumental effort from the players in exceptional circumstances. We travelled with the bare bones, with only Tom Stone, who was yet to play what we deem as a fully competitive game for us, and Meaks at the ripe old age of 45 on the bench, a really long journey, fought back from a goal down against some more poor officiating, showed incredible fitness levels to dominate the second half and the entire extra time to get through to the next round. Even the shoot-out showed great character as Beaconsfield went first and kept scoring so the pressure was really on each of our penalty takers but they showed great composure. I think Wrighty said he hadn’t scored a penalty in 8 years or something like that. Massive credit to the players for the guts and desire they showed to not only win the game but secure another good payday for the club with some more invaluable prize money which keeps us ticking along lovely. Big thanks also to the supporters who made the long trip at really short notice."
Reaction - Brett Trowbridge commented:" A fantastic outcome after what was a difficult trip due to the distance and quick turnaround, meaning we were left short on numbers and playing away is always difficult. The lads dug in and proved what great charatcer we have in this team. Wrighty scored a fabulous header to get us back into the game and it was one way traffic from then onwards and the penalties we took were excellent. We should have won the game on Saturday in truth but we got there in the end and it's some nice prize money for the club. We hope to see lots of fans at the Viridor cheering us on in what is a great draw at home against Concord in the next round. Up The Peacocks!"
With barely time to draw breath, the Peacocks hit the road to Beaconsfield Town for a Buildbase FA Trophy 2nd Round Qualifying replay tomorrow evening (13th November), kick-off 7.45pm. An equaliser two minutes from the end of normal time from the Rams yesterday thwarted Town's attempts to progress to the next stage, the draw for which is being made tomorrow lunchtime. Town will therefore hope for a more clinical performance when they make the 300 mile round trip to Holloways Park tomorrow evening. However they will travel with an understrength squad. Dan Sullivan picked up a leg injury during the first game and Pierce Mitchell is also doubtful with injury while Ben Palmer and Ben Adelsbury are unavailable due to work commitments. Ross Staley though returns after missing yesterday's game and Tom Stone is added to the squad.