Sidmouth Town welcome the in-form Otters
- Credit: Archant
Sidmouth Town face a daunting, yet mouthwatering opportunity to get their season back on track this weekend.
The Vikings welcome neighbours Ottery St Mary to Manstone Lane on Saturday and, while the form book is clearly in favour of the Otters, Sidmouth will enter the game knowing that a win could transform their campaign.
The season actually started for Sidmouth in the reverse fixture at Ottery, when a goal from Will Jenkins was the only consolation from a 3-1 defeat in the South-West Peninsula League.
It was the first of four away fixtures to kick-off the football year for Sidmouth, as they went down to losses at Plymouth Marjon and Elmore before a very unfortunate 3-2 defeat at Stoke Gabriel & Torbay Police, where the performance was decent, but goals from Scott Hughes and Louis Adey were not quite enough on the day.
Will Jenkins scored the first home goal for the Vikings but, again, they came out on the wrong end of a 3-1 defeat to Cullompton Rangers.
While Sidmouth were still seeking a first point in the league, the visit of Ivybridge Town in early September did provide some encouragement. The Vikings actually led the high-flying Ivies before being pegged back by a dodgy penalty, eventually going down to a 3-2 loss.
The long-awaited first point did finally arrive with a hard-fought 0-0 draw at Axminster Town, a particularly impressive result with the Tigers enjoying some excellent results of their own this term.
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Sidmouth then battled superbly before exiting the League Cup at the hands of an extremely strong Falmouth Town outfit. The foundations were growing and Sidmouth spirit was about to get some reward.
Elmore were the visitors on October 19 and the floodlights would twinkle down on an inspired display, which started with a scrambled goal from Jake Boyland inside two minutes. Elmore rallied with two goals to give the Vikings a familiar sinking feeling.
Not on this day. Chris Duchenski, Ace High, Sam Webber and Boyland scored the goals for a 5-3 win. There is no doubt Saturday's visit from second-placed Ottery is a big test but Sidmouth will be relishing the prospect.