Small stars as Town continue to enjoy the new lights at Manstone Lane


Football - Credit: Archant

Sidmouth Town clearly enjoy playing football under the new lights at Manstone Lane.

They have now played twice under the lights and won both games - and the Town second team have also won the one floodlit outing so far that they have had.

Town won the Wednesday night meeting with Liverton 4-1 to leave them unbeaten in three games, as a campaign that started so badly is now beginning to gather momentum.

Town made a bright start and, with Rob Knight and Ash Small making life very uncomfortable for the visiting back line, chances were fashioned. However, it was not one-way and Town glovesman Robbie Powell was called upon to make a fingertip stop to turn a goal-bound header over the bar.

The opening goal came on the half-hour when Small timed his run to perfection to squeeze a near post header between Liverton glovesman and the frame of the goal.

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Five minutes later it was 2-0 as Knight used pace and power to create a chance he finished with aplomb to send the Vikings into the break with a deserved two-goal lead.

Liverton began the second half with a greater tempo to their game, but Sidmouth were held together by the impressive Dan Clay, who used his experience to ‘gel’ things from midfield and, on the hour mark, the lead was extended. Clay was involved in the build-up, a slick passing move that ended with the ball driven home by the left foot of Dan Evans.

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With 15 minutes to play Small bagged his second, this time chasing an apparent ‘lost cause’ only to win the ball and thump it home.

Three minutes later Liverton got a goal back, clinically punishing some hesitant defending from the otherwise disciplined Town back line.

Town assistant manager John Clements said: “We deserved that. Before the game the players were told that they had not been far away in so many games this season, losing on most occasions by the odd goal. They were reminded that chances need to be taken and, to be fair, we finished well in this contest. However, rather than simply being all about finishing, this win was down to the increased work rate across the Manstone Lane pitch as well as the fact that we had bags of pace in our ranks and used that well.

“The lads had the bit between their teeth from the first whistle. They clearly enjoy playing under our new lights!”

On Saturday, Town are again at home and will be looking to make it four home games without defeat and three straight wins when they entertain Galmpton and Roselands (3pm).

Assistant boss Clements says of the Galmpton game: “We will certainly be looking for a continuation of Wednesday night and, hopefully, we will also draw similar support to the sort we drew for the Liverton game. The Manstone Lane faithful really did turn out in numbers and got behind the players and that all helps in terms of the bigger picture.”

Town squad involved against Liverton: Powell, Binion, Clenahan, Ibbeson, Wellman, Clay, Davies (C), Grey, Small, Knight, Evans. Used subs: Swingler, Antat and Densham. Star man – Ashley Small.

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