Clevedon Town vs Taunton Town
Date: August 11, 2020
Competition: Pre-Season Friendly
Venue: Everyone Active Stadium
Kick Off: 7.30pm
Behind Closed Doors
Exactly five calendar months after their last appearance on the field, the Peacocks kicked off their pre-season campaign at Western League Clevedon Town.
Given the fact there were seven debutants in the starting eleven, Town’s start was promising despite the lack of familiarity on a very hot evening and the strange atmosphere of playing in front of deserted terraces. A great build-up ended with a Luke Spokes cross being hoofed over his own bar by a home defender and then when trialist Jay Foulston’s cross was cleared, Sullivan’s left-footer just cleared the bar. The early pressure paid dividends after ten minutes when the Peacocks took the lead, Sullivan’s cross from the right being met by Spokes’ bullet header at the far post which gave Harley Wilkinson no chance.
The visitors continued to press forward, with Sullivan seeing a shot deflected wide and after a mid-session drinks break, new signing Gethyn Hill glanced wide from Sullivan’s cross and then nodded another header past the post from Jake Mawford’s inviting centre. Jake Wannell’s excellent crossfield pass then picked out Sullivan whose cross just evaded fellow striking debutant Toby Holmes.
Town coped with what Clevedon had to offer in the first half which was limited to Mitch Osmond’s deflected effort and Morgan Davies driving wide. That was until the 45 minutes were on the clock, Osmond’s free kick on the left being headed into the middle where Finlay Biggs, who made three cup appearances for Town two seasons ago, was on hand to fire home past Lloyd Irish.
Four changes were made at the break for the Peacocks who threatened in the early part of the second half, Lucas being impeded just outside the box allowing Ross Staley a pot at goal but his free kick hit the wall while Foulston’s free kick was headed over by Hill. Ollie Chamberlain then had two bites of the cherry but was thwarted by a block and then Wilkinson.
The hosts were beginning to ask more questions and caught Town on the break, but Jay Murray’s shot was crowded out. However on the hour the Seasiders grabbed the lead when a forward ball found Biggs in space on the edge of the box and he lobbed over Irish for his second goal of the night. Archie Ferris then earnt a corner with a deflected shot and from the corner put his header wide.
Further substitutions inevitably saw the game become scrappier. Staley dragged the ball across the face of goal and then Owen Howe’s flick from Staley’s cross proved a simple gather for the keeper. Another sub Jordan Copp then burst down the left and tried his luck but saw his strike whistle past the far post.
As Taunton battled for the equaliser, they had to be mindful at the other end, with Zak Drew lofting a long ball over the top and then being denied by Foulston’s block. Jamie Short had a couple of efforts miss the target but three minutes into stoppage time the Peacocks drew level when new boy Aaron Bentley rose to head in the second of successive Copp corners.
Taunton: Lloyd Irish (captain), Jake Mawford (Jamie Short 45), Jay Foulston, Ben Adelsbury (Aaron Bentley 45), Jake Wannell (Jordan Copp 67), Joe Guest, Lee Lucas (Callum Watts 71), Toby Holmes (Aaron Ward-Baptiste 62), Gethyn Hill (Owen Howe 62), Dan Sullivan (Ollie Chamberlain 45), Luke Spokes (Ross Staley 45). Unused sub: Jamie Bremner
Clevedon: Harley Wilkinson (Charles Lovell 70), Elliott Nicholson, Sam Iles (Greg Yarde 80), Callum Kingdon (captain) (Joel Bayliss 88), Harvey Smith, Syd Camper, Jay Murray (Zak Drew 80), Mitch Osmond, Archie Ferris (Ethan Feltham 67), Morgan Davies (Morgan Williams 48), Finlay Biggs. Unused sub: Glen Hayer
Referee: George Enever (Gloucester)
Referee’s Assistant 1: Shaun Enever (Gloucester)
Referee’s Assistant 2: Luke Hulbert (Bristol)