Spot kick separates Sidmouth and Torridgeside as Vikings slip to 10th defeat of the season

Sidmouth Town at home to Cullompton. Ref shsp 38 19TI 0011. Picture: Terry Ife

Sidmouth Town at home to Cullompton. Ref shsp 38 19TI 0011. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

New Sidmouth Town assistant Paul Pocock saw first hand the size of the task ahead as he watched his side lose 1-0 to Torridgeside in the South West Peninsula League Premier East.

A spot-kick from Jack Magarotto was enough to separate the two sides in an even contest at Manstone Lane.

In his programme notes, manager Danny Burwood described the addition of Pocock as 'positive news' and with the number one absent, Pocock joined Brendon Willey in the home dugout.

Going into the match, the Vikings were nine places below their opponents Torridgeside but the early stages did not suggest such a gulf with neither side was able to take firm control of the ball.

The majority of the chances were coming from set-pieces and Torridgeside twice had free kicks nodded away at the back post before Jack Hatswell's effort for Sidmouth required a last-minute block.

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As the game ticked past the half hour mark, Torridgeside were left to rue their luck when a shot careered off the crossbar.

Countering quickly up the field, Aaron Philps produced a curled effort only to see it hit the woodwork on its way over.

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The warning signs were there though for Sidmouth and it was through a counterattack that the goal did arrive.

From a Vikings free kick, Philps was released behind the Sidmouth back line and goalkeeper Brandon Milford so no other option but to bring the number 10 down.

The referee pointed immediately at the spot whilst ignoring the calls for a dismissal and produced a yellow for the guilty glovesman.

Magarotto duly converted the spot kick with a powerful drive into the right of the net. The goal was the 46th conceded by Sidmouth this season.

Starting at defeat, Sidmouth did look to hit back in the second half but found chances at a premium.

Matt Slater was denied by a late block before Hatswell put a volley into the side netting in what were the highlights of the second period chances.

Time proved to be against the Vikings as the clock neared the 90 and the final whistle blew at 1-0, condemning Sidmouth to their 10th defeat of the season.

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