Beer Albion end 2014 with narrow defeat at home to Sidbury

Beer at home to local rivals Sidbury. Ref shsp 0448-53-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife

Beer at home to local rivals Sidbury. Ref shsp 0448-53-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Beer Albion can count themselves unlucky not to have gained at least a point out of a somewhat fractious local derby which was decided by a single goal, a controversial penalty awarded to visitors Sidbury in the second half, writes Richard Honnor.

Sidbury’s physical, high-tempo approach did not make for a great spectacle. Despite this, Beer were the better side for the first 45 minutes and, with more luck, might have been two or three in front. Chris Long and Jacob Clode were working well in midfield, and both of them tested the Sidbury keeper from long range on a couple of occasion.

John Cooper got on the end of a well-delivered free kick by Long only to see his effort hit the post.

Beer still might have scored from the resulting goalmouth scramble but the Sidbury defence somehow managed to keep the ball out.

The visitors came more into the game in the second half. Beer’s defence were at full stretch on occasions, but they worked hard to deny the visitors any clear cut chances and home keeper Steve Jones was rarely tested.

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The game-changer came in the 70th minute when Sidbury mid-fielder, Gale, chased a long through ball down the middle into the penalty area.

Keeper Jones got there first and scrambled the ball away for what appeared to be a corner.

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The Sidbury midfielder collided with the Beer keeper and the referee, who was standing in the centre circle, awarded a penalty. Gale scored from the spot-kick.

Beer strived for an equaliser, but the visitors held out comfortably to win the three points and consolidate their third-place position in the Fresha League Premier Division.

The year of 2014 has not been a vintage one for Beer Albion. The single goal defeat to Sidbury in their final outing of the year means they head into 2015 having won just one of their last eleven matches since a 2-0 home win over Bow AAC on September 27.

In their 33 matches played since they began the year with a January 11 3-0 defeat at St Martins, the Fishermen won 12, drew seven and lost 14.

They scored 45 goals in the 33 outings in league and cup and conceded 57.

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