Karajev nets winner for Beer Reserves

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- Credit: Archant

Beer Albion Reserves beat South Zeal 4-3 in a thrilling Macron League Division Five contest at the Furzebrake on Saturday to earn much needed points, writes Richard Honnor .

The Fishermen were cruising at one stage with a 3-0 lead, but never looked comfortable at the back against Zeal’s counter attacks.

In a crazy 12-minute spell in the second half, Zeal pulled the score back to 3-3, but Beer hung on and then fashioned an excellent late winner to leave the unlucky visitors empty-handed.

After an evenly-contested 20 minutes, the first real goalmouth incident came on 25 minutes when Beer keeper Henry Bartlett pushed a fierce shot behind via the crossbar.

From the resulting corner, Beer were again saved by the woodwork when a well-struck shot from 10 yards hit the post.


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Two minutes later, the Fishermen took the lead when Ollie Paget’s speculative 20 yard shot bounced awkwardly for the South Zeal keeper and into the net.

The visitors came back strongly and the Beer defence showing a lack of cover was frequently caught square by the long ball. Keeper Bartlett had to be alert and quick off his line to get his defence out of trouble on several occasions.

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But, against the run of play the Fisherman went 2-0 ahead on 42 minutes, thanks to a fine strike from George Harwood.

After the break, South Zeal again took the game to Beer and keeper Bartlett was soon called into action with one-on-one saves in the 46th and 50th minutes as the visitors continued to carve through the Albion defence.

Yet again against the run of play, the Fishermen went three up when striker Joel Seward dispossessed the South Zeal centre back on the edge of the penalty box and squared the ball across to winger Ed Karajev who converted from 10 yards.

This did not deter South Zeal as they continued to take the attack to the home side and unsurprisingly reduced the arrears on 60 minutes. The Beer defence was caught square by a through ball and striker Adam Clarke beat the advancing Bartlett with a good finish. Five minutes later it was 3-2 when poor marking presented South Zeal’s Tom Reilly with a simple tap-in.

Beer had a good chance to wrap up the game on 67 minutes when a through ball from Harwood presented Karajev with a chance but he shot straight at the keeper.

The visitors made it 3-3 on 70 minutes with a somewhat controversial goal through Reilly. The South Zeal midfielder appeared to kick the ball out of Bartlett’s hands but referee Phil Margrett adjudged that the Beer keeper did not have full control of the ball.

At this stage it looked as if the Fishermen were going to concede defeat, but they responded well and went 4-3 ahead on 75 minutes with the best goal of the game.

A great through ball from Harwood found Seward on the the right. The hard-working striker went outside the full back and crossed to the far post where Karajev blasted in his second from close range. Zeal fashioned two more good chances in the final five minutes, but Beer held on for a welcome three points.

The Man of the Match award, presented by match sponsors Woozie’s Deli, went to Suth Zeal midfielder Tom Reilly. Beer’s best player was keeper Henry Bartlett.

This Saturday Beer Albion first team entertain Okehampton Argyle in the Macron Premier Division. Match sponsor is Bay View Guest House, Fore Street Beer. Kick-off at the Furzebrake is at 2:15pm. Beer 2nd’s have a tough Division Five encounter away at third placed Winchester.

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