Youngsters impress in Beer reserves opening day success
- Credit: Archant
Beer Albion Reserves kicked off their 2016/7 league campaign with a rousing 6-2 win over Newton St. Cyres writes Richard Honnor.
The game was a fine advertisement for ‘grass-roots’ football; it was an action-packed thriller, played in an excellent spirit with both sides serving up fine football and some spectacular finishing.
From the outset both sides went at each other with attacking football and the Fishermen’s 16-year old debutant keeper Henry Bartlett was soon tested on nine minutes when he made a good catch from a firm header from the Saints centre forward Adi Selway.
On 20 minutes. Beer’s other 16-year-old new boy, Jamie Walker, made a fine fun down the left producing a cross for Paul Langham whose looping header went just over the St Cyres’ crossbar. The visitors were however, giving the Beer defence some real problems with their counter-attacking style and again Bartlett saved his side on 24 minutes when they were caught out by a long ball over the top.
It was the Fishermen who took the lead however with a ‘route-one’ goal. Bartlett’s long clearance was expertly controlled by Richard Walker with his first touch, enabling the veteran forward to strike a 35-yard lob with his second touch over the visitors’ keeper who had strayed off his line!
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The Saints came back well, and Beer centre backs Joe Adkin and Tom Neale had to be at their best to deal with some sustained pressure.
However, the inevitable equaliser arrived on 36 minutes when the Fishermen were caught failing to execute the offside trap and another long ball was latched onto by the lively Selway who slotted it past the advancing Bartlett from 12 yards.
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Beer went ahead 2-1 on 40 minutes after a fine pass from Simon Smith found Richard Walker whose pull-back from the left was met on the volley by Smith into the left hand corner.
Back came the Mid Devon side and only some desperate defending in the last few minutes before half-time allowed the Fishermen’s to hold an interval lead.
After the break, Richard Walker had a good chance on 47 minutes, but hooked Billy Long’s cross wide of the near post.
For the following 15 minutes Newton St Cyres dominated the possession, but Beer’s overworked defence somehow held out.
In a rare attack on 59 minutes, Walker was unlucky not to score from close range when his fierce strike rattled the underside of the visitor’s cross-bar.
The inevitable equaliser came for the Saints on 61 minutes when their influential midfielder Jamie Farrell hit an unstoppable left-foot strike from 35-yards into the top left hand corner.
At this stage only one result looked possible as the visitors piled on the pressure, but they were caught out on 72 minutes when the hard-working Simon Smith and Langham combined well to split the opposition defence and provide another chance for Walker who made no mistake this time from 10 yards to make it 3-2. Newton St Cyres hit back once more and an 82minute strike looked set to level things up only for Beer glovesman Bartlett to produce a brilliant flying save to keep his team in front.
This was to prove a key moment and the Fishermen took control for the rest of the game. Langham scored Beer’s fourth on 82 minutes providing the finish after Smith’s free-kick into the penalty box was nodded down into his path by Walker. Two late goals ensued first on 88 minutes when debutant Jamie Walker placed the ball expertly passed the keeper’s left hand, and, on 90 minutes Beer’s Nathan Newbury made the score a somewhat flattering 6-2 with yet another spectacular strike from 35-yards.
Match sponsor Pecorama at Beer, Gardens, Games, and Trains judged Beer’s best player to be Tom Neale, but awarded the Man of the Match award to visiting striker Adi Selway.
Beer’s second team are at home again this Saturday (September 3) when they play Sandford 2nds in the Devon Intermediate Cup. Kick-off is at 2 pm and the match sponsor is Steamers Restaurant, Beer.
The first team also have Saturday action, they face a tricky East Devon Senior Cup tie away at Heavitree United where kick-off is 2.30pm.