Evesham Town 0-2 Winchester City
What a bloody fantastic result, I am immensely proud of the lads, to go and beat an Evesham side who have easily the best if not the best pedigree of players available to them in the league, but to beat them 2-0 with a brilliant display like we did is fantastic and I’m so chuffed for everyone connected with the club!
So we were without Joe Cook suspended still, Griggsy was away on a work course sadly, then on the morning of the game Joe Hayward had to withdraw ill, we had Flooksy back available though after training on Thursday. We have not had a game for 3 weeks and they had played both the weekends we had missed, so i was concerned that we would be missing that sharpness, what I didn’t doubt though was our fitness levels, we haven’t shirked the hard work in every available training session, doing so with no facilities available to us to train on, so we have had to make do, the staff and players even paid for their own training venue on one occasion, I can guarantee that this is not the norm, as a club I hope everyone understands what a special group we have hear, they are top class!
We started the game and from start to finish we were on top really, deservedly went ahead with a flowing move finished by Baz! We should have scored a 2nd when Sim failed to convert in front of goal after Rob Carr Cross, a few other opportunities went missing as well. They didn’t really have a proper chance. 1-0 at the break.
2nd half again we dictated the game, they had a bit more possession but didn’t hurt us, 1 free kick well saved by Prycey albeit straigh at him but good hands to hold it as it bobbled... we got a 2nd as Ty came on for the tireless Oli from a corner that he nodded in. We closed the game out well after that, we did have 1 scare in last few minutes as I managed to scramble a header off the line for my sins and a knock on the head, well worth the headache I can assure you!!!
What a great great result and still unbeaten in 2019! Massive thanks to the fans who were outstanding again as well! We now have to get ready for a massive game at home to Barnstable who are going well under new management, let’s hope we can repeat this level of performance and get the result we need!
Have a great weekend all!
Up the citizens!!!
WCFC 3-2 Cirencester Town
What a great result and an excellent performance, playing against a good Cirencester side who were sat in the play offs, to perform the way we did and get the 3 points was superb and very proud of the whole squad!!
We were without Joe Cook suspended and Flooksy failed a fitness test, both have been absolutely influential in the recent run we have been on, Graham Williams came in and we brought Kinger back in, shuffling Rawks forward and giving Simba a very specific role today that we worked hard on, to say the hard work paid off would be an understatement with that work we put in on this...
So against the fairly heavy wind first half we took the game to them from the start, they didn’t really have any shots or efforts of note at all in the first half, we missed a couple of good chances before Simba scored the first, we got a 2nd when Baz corner was nodded in by their defender. 2-0 up at the break.
2nd half we had the wind in our favour and again totally dominated the game, Baz could have put us 3-0 up in the first minute of half but eventually got a 3rd from Ty who we had substituted on. We changed both wingers who had run themselves into the ground! They really hadn’t entered our box at any point, however a bit of a mixup allowed them to get 1 back and then a 2nd from a penalty with a few minutes left, all of a sudden it was a game that we had to close off again, to be fair we did that superbly and they didn’t have a touch really for the last 3/4 minutes. 3-2 win and that was quite flattering to them I thought.
A great 3 points against a decent side and so I am delighted! Very proud of the efforts of the whole squad, also the staff who worked hard to pick the side we did and set us up as we did, a real group effort! Well done everyone.
Now we have a weeks training to prepare for Highworth away which will be another tough game, we will go there full of confidence though.
Up the citizens!!
Paulton Rovers 0-1 Winchester City
What a bloody great result that was, 1-0 wins away are always enjoyable after the event, also to do it at against a bogeyside like Paulton, great result but also a performance that was controlled from start to finish! Great win!!
We had Kinger only fit to take a place on the bench, rawks came in, we also replaced Ty with Oli up front after his 2 goals in midweek, Ty on the bench, Gilly also returned to the starting lineup!
We pretty much controlled the whole of the first half and they didn’t trouble us, we scored with a great ball by Baz played Simba in to expertly lob the keeper! We also hit the post and had so much territory it really was a decent display just a shame to only be 1-0 up at the break!
2nd half they had a few more visits into our defensive third but they didn’t really create anything, our defensive line were superb and stopped them having hardly anything. We on the other hand created a number of good chances, Oli had a 1 on 1 which the keeper saved well, we had a number of other close efforts. We looked like had no troubles at the back until the 93rd minute and had Prycey to thank for a top class save to preserve the result, would have been a travesty to be fair, fantastic result and superb display!!
So pleased for everyone, remain unbeaten in 2019 and sets us up for a massive game next weekend now at home to Cirencester! Big thanks to the supporters today who were once again outstanding!
Well done everyone!
Up the citizens!
Winchester City 2-0 Bashley
Professional job done tonight against a Bashley side who are going quite well in the top 6/8 in the Wessex league, very routine and comfortable 2-0 win to put us in the semi finals of the Southampton Snr Cup.
Player wise we left out IK (cup tied), Rob Carr, Gilly, Flooksy, Tyrell, Brett, myself and Kinger, bringing back Mark Fawley, Fabio and Ant Croucher who are all out on dual reg loan and have been doing well, also Graham Williams, Oli Bailey who have both been on the bench came into start, plus added 16 year olds Sam Tonks and Jack Francis who are both doing well in the youth/reserves!
Game was a little scrappy early on however we soon got a firm grip of the game and created several chances, we soon scored 2 goals with Oli Bailey getting both, the 1st after a great bit of work from Simba. Came in at half time 2-0 up and Prycey hadn’t made a save! 2nd half we basically kept them at arms length and ran out 2-0 winners without Prycey making any saves, against a half decent Bashley side after so many changes that was a good job done.
Pleasing nights work, attitude of the 1st team lads was spot on, loan players came back and performed very well, youngsters all played well, enjoyable nights work. All the beat to Bashley for rest of the season, lot of good people there who I wish the very best for.
For us now we have to prepare for a trip away to Paulton on Saturday, a game that we will need to be at our best for! We go there full of confidence though!
Up the citizens!
Evesham 0 Winchester City 2
Winchester obtained their first win at Evesham's ground since October 2012 and moved up to sixth in the table. The clubs have now met in the 2012/13, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19 seasons and in each case the league games have produced one win apiece. However it was good revenge for Winchester having lost on their last three visits to Evesham and being beaten 2-1 by the Midlands club earlier in the season.
It was Winchester's first match for three weeks having had their last two matches postponed, although some of their players have had run-outs for the reserve team in the interim period.
With Joe Hayward ill, Ollie Griggs unavailable and Joe Cook completing a suspension Winchester made one change to the starting line-up from their last league outing with Robbie Flooks returning from injury coming in for Hayward.
Evesham started brightly but Winchester took the lead in the 10th minute when Jamie Barron slotted home from close range. Winchester were on top after the goal and almost scored a second, but midway through the half when Steve Davies pits in a dangerous cross which eventually falls to Kane Simpson, but his effort was comfortably saved.
Winchester however enjoy a good first half and go into the interval with a 1-0 advantage and apply a lot of pressure towards the end of it.
Winchester have a great chance to score a second in the second half but Simba Mlambo shoots wide after being set up by Oli Bailey. However they do score the all important second goal with ten minutes remaining following a corner which Tyrell MItford who had come on for Oli Bailey headed home. Ryan Pryce had to save a free kick and right at the death Craig Davis who like IK Hill came on as substitute late in the game had to head off the line from Kai Fisher.
However generally Winchester deserved their win against a team currently occupying a playoff berth and enjoying good support with over 200 attending Saturday's game and a sizeable away contingent travelling to Winchester for the away fixture which was played in midweek.
Winchester are at home to Barnstaple on Saturday. On Friday five teams entered a quiz for which Wayne Elkins was the quiz master.
Winchester 3 Cirencester 2
Winchester obtained their first ever league win against Cirencester having lost all of the previous games between the clubs. The result means they are seventh just one point outside the playoffs. They were without Joe Cook who was suspended and Robbie Flooks who failed a late fitness test with Graham Williams (a namesake of a former F A Cup winning captain) coming in at centre back and Danny King returning to the side, with Jake Rawkins playing further up field as the only two changes to the starting line-up from the previous Saturday.
Cirencester themselves were without Alan Griffin younger brother of Charlie, having been sent off the previous week in another a 3-2 defeat to Blackfield in which on loan Eastleigh striker Ollie Dennett had scored the winning goal. Prior to this game Cirencester had scored 13 more league goals than any other club in the league than any other team in the division with the partnership of the younger Griffin brother and Ben Whitehead being instrumental in this.
Winchester started the match brightly with Oli Bailey shooting wide early on and then setting up Simba Mlambo whose effort was saved by the Cirencester goalkeeper. Bailey's ability to chase everything certainly kept the Cirencester defence on their toes and if his first touch had not just carried the ball forward slightly too far he could have almost been clean through.
Winchester did take the lead in the 17th minute when Rob Carr played the ball into the box and it was put away by Mlambo. Although Michael Pook came close with a lob and Antonio Gerrish forcing a good save from Pryce Winchester continued to look the more threatening and they put together a couple of good moves which resulted in Oli Bailey and Simba Mlambo shooting wide.
Winchester did score the second when after Jake Rawkins had an effort deflected for a corner. the resulting corner taken by Jamie Barron was headed into the net. Simba Mlambo was in close proximity when the ball was headed in and it was thought in some quarters that he was entitled to claim the goal, but in fact it was Cirencester's Adam Connolly who headed the ball into the net.
Early in the second half Jamie Barron had a shot saved by Cirencester goalkeeper Mateusz Wieczorek and he also tested the goalkeeper with a lob. Danny King also shot over as with the wind advantage Winchester looked solid at the back and the wind advantage this half. They took offOli Bailey who had run himself into the ground and replaced him with Tyrell Mitford. Five minutes after coming on Wieczorek could only parry a Simba Mlambo header into the path of Mitford who headed home from close range.
IK Hill and Brett Cunningham came on as substitutes, but they conceded a goal with 11 minutes remaining when Antonio Gerrish following up after Ryan Pryce saved a shot that he could not hold on to.
In the final minute of normal time Graham Williams fouled Ben Whitehead and the league's leading scorer converted the penalty himself. With three minutes of added on time as well this caused a bit of nail biting amongst the Winchester faithful and the home team won a few throw ins for which they were mainly concerned with keeping the ball as they held on to the lead.
It was a victory that Winchester clearly deserved, as they gave a good account of themselves, but if Cirencester had played with same intensity at the start as they did in the final 10 minutes it could have been a different game.
On Saturday Winchester are away to Highworth who are another club enjoying a good run of form.
Paulton Rovers 0 Winchester 1
Winchester went into Saturday's game with Paulton having previously drawn once and lost five times at Paulton's ground and having only won twice in twelve games between the club, with manager Craig Davis being yet to record a victory against them as Winchester boss.
However a 1-0 success enabled Winchester to win for the first time on this ground and achieve their seventh away league win of the season and avenge a 3-2 defeat earlier in the season which represented Winchester's first league defeat of the season.
Paulton are below Winchester in the table, but in view of the fact that they had become a bit of a bogey side for Winchester could not be taken lightly.
Winchester made three changes to the starting line-up from the previous Saturday with Liam Gilnert, Jake Rawkins nnd Oli Bailey coming in for Craig Davis, Danny King and Tyrell Mitford with the last two named being on the bench.
Early on Jamie Barron had an effort deflected onto the post, but Winchester did take the lead in the 34th minute when Jamie Barron set up Simba Mlambo to score with a well executed lob. Before half time Rob Carr forced a save from Adam Forster with Oli Bailey not quite able to follow up. However overall Winchester looked comfortable in the first half.
In the second half Paulton began to apply more pressure and force Winchester to defend deeply at times. However Winchester looked solid as a unit and created the better chances with Rob Carr and Simba Mlambo only being narrowly off target and Jamie Barron having an effort deflected for a corner after good work by Jake Rawkins. However Oli Bailey had the best chance when he was clean through only to be denied by a good save from Forster. Paulton though had the first real chance of the game in the 93rd minute when it required a good save from Ryan Pryce to keep them out, but at the end of the day it was three welcome points for Winchester who are at home to Cirencester on Saturday
Winchester City 2 Bashley 0
Winchester progressed to the semi finals of the Southampton Senior Cup with a 2-0 victory over Bashley. For me personally the match was played the day before my birthday so it was a good birthday present, while manager Craig Davis and chief scout Pete Millard were both involved in the Bashley set up for several years, Craig as a player.
Although Bashley now play in the Sydenham's Wessex League it is worth pointing out that as little as five years ago they were playing in the Southern League Premier Division. In fact under the management of Trevor Parker they once finished fourth having at one time led the table in the days when winning this division usually meant promotion to the National League. Sadly Trevor who also managed the Fareham team that reached the semi finals of the F A Trophy and has managed many local teams in his career is very unwell at the moment.
Winchester fielded six players in Ryan Pryce, Joe Hayward, Joe Cook, Joshua Harfield, Jamie Barron and Simba Mlambo who had started the previous Saturday plus Oli Bailey and Jake Rawkins who are very much part of the first team squad and both came on at Thatcham. Recent signing Graham Williams was also selected and there were starting berths for Fabio Manuel and Mark Fawley, plus a fairly young bench.
Both the goals were scored by former Bashley player Oli Bailey within four minutes of each other in the first half. The first coming in the 25th minute when Simba Mlambo won possession and set up Oli Bailey and the second coming when a good run by Bailey put him clean through and he made no mistake. Jake Rawkins also came close for Winchester as they looked comfortable in the first half.
In the second half Winchester hit the post and Simba Mlambo headed over following a cross from Jamie Barron, but again they looked comfortable, with Ryan Pryce untroubled in the Winchester goal. Towards the end of the second half Ant Croucher, Jack Francis and Sam Tonks were introduced as substitutes.
Joe Merrett scored for Winchester City Reserves who were beaten 2-1 by AFC Stoneham Reserves. AFC Stoneham first team are scheduled to be Winchester's next opponents in the Southampton Senior Cup.
On Saturday Winchester's opponents Cirencester have scored 15 more league goals than anyone else in the division and also scored 15 F A Cup goals in the current campaign before Winchester stopped them in their tracks.