Taunton Town vs Yeovil Town
Date: September 7th, 2020
Competition: Pre-Season Friendly
Venue: Cygnet Health Care Stadium
Kick Off: 7.30pm
Probably the strangest ever pre-season under the cloud of Covid came to an end as the Peacocks gained a win over their National League visitors.
It was another encouraging performance by Town ahead of their League opener next weekend although it was the Glovers who were on top early doors, missing a good chance to take the lead in just the first minute when Courtney Duffus took advantage of some hesitation to cross to Rhys Murphy who sidefooted wide. Matt Worthington then had a shot blocked before the Peacocks provided their first attempt around ten minutes in when Dan Sullivan’s corner was headed clear but only as far as Ross Staley whose fine volley from the edge of the box was turned aside by Yeovil keeper Adam Smith.
In front of a 464 crowd, the hosts began to grow into the game as they mounted pressure on the Yeovil goal. Jay Foulston’s free kick from just outside the box was too high while Ollie Chamberlain was unable to direct his header on target from Jamie Short’s cross, then Gethyn Hill turned onto Short’s pass but saw his effort blocked and Sullivan fired his volley narrowly over. The visitors looked dangerous on the counter and came close again when Worthington’s cross was met by Murphy, however Lloyd Irish was equal to the task and dived to turn the shot away.
Sullivan fired another opening over following a superb cross from Staley before the Peacocks took the lead on 30 minutes. Toby Holmes was denied by Smith to win a corner from which Sullivan delivered to the near post and skipper Nick Grimes stole in to flick the ball into the net. Hill then sent his header straight at Smith as Town kept on the offensive but were then forced to defend well as Yeovil pressed up to the break. Duffus broke into the box but Irish parried and the danger was eventually cleared by Joe Guest, and the Peacocks keeper then claimed the ball as Charlie Lee threatened from Worthington’s free kick. Staley was having a storming game for Town on the left and after sidestepping a defender his wicked cross was just in front of Hill as Town held the advantage at the break.
The Glovers had the ideal chance to draw level a minute into the second half when Duffus was pushed over in the box by Short. However Murphy’s spot kick struck the post and Town scrambled clear. Another moment of concern came and went when Luke Wilkinson’s free kick from the edge of the area hit the wall. Town responded by making it 2-0 after 56 minutes. A great pass from Sullivan found Staley, his scorching strike from the left was palmed away by Smith and Hill nodded the aerial ball home for his third pre-season goal.
Both sides immediately made a double substitution and one of the new boys, Yeovil’s Jimmy Smith, was soon involved, blasting well wide after latching on to a ricochet. A ball over the top then fell for Hill at the other end but his shot was deflected wide.
The Glovers failed to make the most of several promising raids, Murphy firing wide and Jimmy Smith heading over before they reduced the arrears on 78 minutes. After Irish had touched aside Wilkinson’s free kick, the Yeovil player went one better from Worthington’s corner, diving to head in at the back post. The visitors then made a late flurry of substitutions, but the new faces were unable to make any difference as the final ten minutes passed by without incident, the Peacocks finishing their friendlies with only one defeat from eight games.
Taunton: Lloyd Irish, Jamie Short (Jake Mawford 57), Jay Foulston, Ross Staley (Jordan Copp 57), Nick Grimes (captain), Triallist, Ollie Chamberlain, Gethyn Hill (Triallist 75), Toby Holmes (Triallist 72), Dan Sullivan (Dan McBeam 68), Joe Guest. Unused subs: Ben Adelsbury, Lee Lucas
Yeovil: Adam Smith, Charlie Lee (Jimmy Smith 57), Carl Dickinson (captain) (Alfie Lloyd 78), Josh Staunton, Albi Skendi (Toby Stephens 84), Luke Wilkinson (Dylan Poku-Aboraa 78), Matt Worthington, Rhys Murphy (Adam Heaton 78), Courtney Duffus (Daniel Neild 78), Gabriel Rogers (Jack Clarke 57), Alex John. Unused subs: Lee Collins, Harry Palmer
Referee: Scott Jackson (Bridgwater)
Referee’s Assistant 1: Steve Reed (Churchinford)
Referee’s Assistant 2: Richard Lawrence (Taunton)