Evo-Stick South Premier Division South Wednesday 26th December 2018
Gosport Borough 3 – 2 Basingstoke Town Attendance 351
Well despite being the better team for large parts of this game, we again succumbed to yet another away defeat, this time conceding 3 goals.
On a fairly pleasant warm Boxing Day afternoon, and with a number of his absent players from last Saturday’s game back in contention, Martin Kuhl went with the following line-up; In goal Colm McAdden, the back four of Dean Stow, Charlie Kennedy (Capt), Dan Baylis & Drew Matthews. The midfield contained the new Sam Deadfield (Harry Pearse), Dan Collier, Sam Deadfield & Zidane Akers, with Sam Smart up front with Sam Argent.
On the bench; Hollamby, Orvis & brand new signee Dan Read.
With Basingstoke Town kicking off attacking the Clubhouse End, there is very little quality play until the 5th minute when the home team break, but the ball that falls to a the forward 25yds out is volleyed high and wide of the goal.
On 7 mins, we have our first real attack as Deadfield feeds Smart, whose first touch is poor, and he has to cross the ball from an acute angle that finds the defender who can only knock it back to Smart, this time his cross is in the air and is punched clear to Dean Stow who runs on to it 25yds out, but his shot is not going to trouble anyone and flies 4yds wide of the far post.
On 10 mins Collier wins the ball just inside our half and goes on a run with a Boro player on his shoulder for 25yds before Collier tries to pass out wide on the left, it takes a slight deflection, but still finds Akers, who cuts inside but his shot although hit well again doesn’t trouble the keeper as it flies 2yds wide.
On 16 mins and after more good midfield work, Deadfield has the ball, he has the time and space to take it five yards forwards before he takes aim, but his shot is dragged wide of the post.
On 19 mins I think Harry Pearse slides a lovely ball through to Akers on the run, however rather than taking it a few paces and shoot, he decides to hold it up and this allows the defence to recover, Akers then cuts inside and still does not want to shoot, and then passes it out wide to Smart, whose cross is cut out for a corner. Nothing comes from the corner.
On 20 mins and the first of many shots on the day from Pearse, as he wins back the ball 30yds out, he takes it 5 yds and then shoots wide it wide of the near post. A minute later again another break, this time it’s Deadfield’s turn to shoot, he makes a far better connection, as it has the keeper beaten bit just flies inches wide of the far post and hits the metal post holding the net up at the back of the goal.
Then on 23 minutes Gosport create a chance as they break down our left the cross goes in, and a mis-hit clearance has to be helped out of our box.
Then on 25 mins we deservedly take the lead, as ex-Stokie George Bennett takes out Argent 25yds out. Bennett is booked to the few Stoke fans amusement.
There is Smart, Deadfield & Stow over the ball. Deadfield dummies it and Stow steps up clips it over the bar and although it bounces in front of the goal it is easily past the keeper and into the net. GOAL Gosport Borough 0-1 Basingstoke Town
On 27 mins and Gosport could have had the equaliser as the break and the cross finds a wide open Boro forward whose first time shot is poor as he drags his shot 5yds wide.
Harry Pearse then wins it again in midfield, does a neat one-two with Deadfield and then hits another shot that is straight at the keeper who saves comfortably.
Gosport then win back-to-back corners, the first is fluffed away by Colm who then makes up for it with a dominant catch in the air. The second corner Colm meets the ball in the air at the near post and confidently catches it again.
On 31 mins, good work by Argent who has already been knocked about a few times finds Smart down the right, but his cross is poor and flies over the crossbar for a goal-kick.
Another attack by Stoke as Akers is fed the ball, but his shot although hit ok, allows the keeper to catch it and then sends the ball out wide on the left. Gosport break down our right, and a neat move between two Boro forwards gets that touch of luck as it takes a slight deflection off our defender and rolls into the path of leading goal-scorer Ryan Pennery, who clips it over McAdden into the net and we are back level.
On 38 mins we again attack down the left as Argent is fed the ball from Deadfield, but a good tackle puts the ball out for a corner. Argent runs to the corner flag as we take a short corner and Deadfield after two touches slides Argent in and he takes two touches into the box then hits a shot come cross that flies past the keeper and defence and it seems to hit Akers in the head at the far post and it flies over the bar for a goal-kick.
On 42 mins we are back on it again as Deadfield find Smart down the right, his first attempt of a cross is knocked back to him, his second attempt is hit to the far post, where Akers just gets his head to it this time, it flies up in the air and Argent challenges the keeper for the ball it bounces down to Pearse who hits it with right foot but straight at the keeper who pushes it away and the ball is hacked clear. Anywhere else and it was a goal.
The referee plays one minute of added time before he blows for halftime.
Half-time; Gosport Borough 1-1 Basingstoke Town
No changes by Basingstoke as the game gets back underway.
On 49 mins and another sign why some fans are down on Akers, as a lovely through ball allows him to get onto the ball first, but as a challenge comes in, he just slightly lifts and pulls his leg away from the tackle. This is confirmed by two other fans standing with me. Then literally 30 seconds later a lovely floated clip over the top from Deadfield finds Akers in space, he controls it and cuts towards a 1 on 1 with the keeper, but his shot hits the bar, but the linesman has flagged for offside anyway.
On 51 & 52 mins further attacks by Basingstoke are down either wings but neither can beat the first defender and Gosport are able to clear.
On 53 mins Gosport break but good defensive work allows us to clear the ball almost to the halfway line, where Argent is first on it as he gets knocked off the ball, the ref gives us nothing and Argent is back up and on the ball and he gets another touch, before he gets hacked down again.
On 56 mins we again are back on the attack, as Smart is fed the ball down the right he, has slips past ex-Stoke defender Ryan Case for about the 5th time this game and he sends in a wicked cross that is put over his own cross bar by a Gosport defender. Again the corner kick is poor as it doesn’t beat the first defender.
On 58 and 59 mins we are still attacking and more excellent work by Pearse send Akers down the left, he cuts inside about 28yds out and gets pulled back. The ref decides to give us a free-kick and books the Gosport player. Nothing happens from the kick.
On 61 mins we again attack and Smart bring the ball deep into the opposition’s half, he let’s fly and it hits the defender, he recovers the loose ball, turns and sends it through to Argent who takes too long on the ball and his shot is blocked and cleared.
On 63 mins and another controversial decision by the referee as Smart goes for the ball and Ryan Case is too slow and lunges for Smart and goes studs up into Smart’s nether regions. Smart is in agony and our physio Kelly is not here today, so the Gosport equivalent comes out to Sam who is writhing in pain on the floor. Clear red card for dangerous play, but all he gets is a yellow. Smart spends the remaining few minutes on the pitch by the player dugouts trying to recover.
In this time Gosport take advantage of our 10 men/9 men as they attack down our right, the ball comes across and we half clear to the edge of the penalty area, where the ball is flighted over to the far post just over Bayliss’ head, where a Gosport player heads it back across the goalmouth and a Boro player is first to it and slots it into the net. Somehow we trail 2-1.
Smart limps gingerly off and has been replaced for new signee Dan Read.
We then attack on 68 mins again following more good work from Collier and Pearse, who slides the ball to Deadfield. Deadfield, could shoot, but takes another touch, cuts it back inside another two yards and then hits a curler, it takes a slight deflection of a defender which helps it past the keeper and into the far corner of the net. GOAL Gosport Borough 2-2 Basingstoke Town
If you think game has been wide open upto now, the game now swings from end-to end as both teams go for the winner.
On 71 mins and another poor tackle by Bennett on Argent goes unpunished.
On 72 ins we attack, and another free-kick could have been given, but Gosport break deep into our half there’s a i-2 with another player and then Gosport’s Pat Suraci hits one from 30yds and it’s over Colm and into the back of the net. Yes we now trail 3-2!!
Basingstoke look far from done and we have another on 75 mins and we win a free-kick about 30yds out. The free-kick by Stow splits open the defence and Kennedy races through but just fails to get a touch on the ball, and it luckily bounces straight into the keeper’s arms.
On 77 mins and Gosport have a chance to finish it off, but we are able to block the tackle and clear.
On 79 mins further good play by Pearse down the left as he takes it around three defenders and his cross to the front post is met by another Boro defender. Pearse makes it clear he expects someone to make the run to the front post.
On 81 mins again we attack, a shot from Deadfield is deflected wide for a corner. Yet again the corner is easily defended.
On 84 mins we are back on it and this time a one-two with Argent and Deadfield, allows Argent to take the ball before he gets chopped down, the referee doesn’t want to know.
On 85 mins Argent has another chance as he is fed the ball in the box he takes a touch then slides it onto his left foot, his shot hits the keeper’s legs and flies clear.
On 88 mins Gosport break and we put it out for a corner. There corner is initially cleared, but it’s then pumped back in and over the far post and out for a goal-kick.
The referee has indicated an extra 4 minutes of injury-time.
In the 92nd minute we pump the ball into the Gosport box, Bayliss gets his head onto it and it falls to Argents feet who tries to turn and shoot, but he goes down and there’s a shout for a penalty, the ref waves play-on and the ball is still in their box, this time another Stoke player goes down, more penalty claims more waving it away by the referee and that’s our final chance gone.
Final Score: Gosport Borough 3 – 2 Basingstoke Town
Final Thought’s – Yet another loss on the road, this time a heart-breaking one as we deserved at least a point on the day.
Despite outstanding performances from Harry Pearse & Sam Deadfield on the day we as a team miss too many chances.
Sam Argent put in an amazing shift and will no doubt be covered in bruises tonight as he got some real poor treatment by the players and very little protection from the referee.
Sam Smart will be having a quiet night in on his own tonight!
This game was there for the taking all afternoon and we have let it slip away again as we fall down the league to 17th place.
Up next is a trip to Beaconsfield who gave Staines Town a 0-2 head-start before coming back to win 3-2. The omens don’t look good!
Match Report by Martin French..