Sidmouth Town ‘too nice’ as they are beaten at Elmore

Sidmouth Town at home to Axminster. Ref shsp 43 18TI 3299. Picture: Terry Ife

Sidmouth Town at home to Axminster. Ref shsp 43 18TI 3299. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Sidmouth Town joint boss Kev Tooze was proud of his young side after they pushed one of the title favourites – Elmore – all the way before going down 2-1 at Horsdon Park, Tiverton last Saturday.

Town, who took the lead through a fine finish from Ben Miller, then shipped a brace of goals before the break.

The second half saw plenty of end-to-end action with chances created at both ends, but there were no further goals.

Tooze said: “At the end of the game the lads were gutted and very down in the Elmore dressing rooms and that speaks volumes for the collective shift they all put in at Horsdon Park.”

He continued: “Hand on heart, I do think a draw would have been a fair result and it underlines the resolve and the passion – not to mention the quality – we have in the team right now that the lads can come away from a game at the home of a team expected to be ‘there or thereabouts come the business end of the season’ feeling dejected with the fact they had got nowt from the game.”

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One area of the team’s performance that Tooze identified as being a key reason for them not getting anything from the game was the fact that he feels Town are currently ‘too nice’.

He explained what he meant by saying: “We are a young team and what you get with young team is a naivety that is refreshing as much as it is frustrating, for what we really needed at Elmore, particularly having shocked them by taking the lead, was to get a wee bit ‘nasty’.

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“We needed to impose ourselves on them. Make no mistake, they [Elmore] are a very good side and they will win more than they lose at this level.

“However, we matched them pace for pace and shot for shot for long periods.

“The difference between the teams was that little bit ‘extra’ you can only get from experience and that is knowing when you need to close a game up and hold onto what you have.”

Tomorrow (Saturday), Town are back in home action when the visitors to Manstone Lane are St Martins.

The Exminster-based side sit seventh, one place and seven points better off than Town.

Tooze says: “It’ll be another big test for our young side. Given what I have already said about what we missed in terms of taking something from the game at Elmore, this will be a similar contest and it will be interesting to see if the lads have taken on board some of the things we said after last Saturday’s defeat.”

He continued: “The boys are good enough to beat the likes of Elmore and St Martins and I am very confident that, as each game goes by, the lads are growing more confident as individuals and collectively.”

The game against St Martins kicks off at 3pm.

There are doubts over Danny Clay and Martyn Hancock - the latter missed the game at Elmore after dropping a breeze block on his foot at work the day before!

It’s the final outing of Janaury for Town who, in February, have just three league games with a home game against leaders Stoke Gabriel on the 9th and then away games at Alphington (16th) and Teignmouth (23rd).

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