Bournemouth Poppies (0 - 6) Win City
Bournemouth Poppies 0 Winchester City 6
City came to Victoria Park, Bournemouth, on Saturday 21st March 2015 expecting a hard match as the Poppies at home were expected to stop their slide down the table. As it turned out City cruised to victory and the score could have reached double figures.
Winchester went in at half time one up but they could have easily been four or five to the good. They scored one, had one goal wiped out for offsides and shaded the post once.
Facing the sun and playing with a strong wind were two additional handicaps City had to face as well as a pitch that desperately needed cutting where there was grass and an heavy roller over the whole surface. The ball bobbled all over the place.
Having said all that, it only took City seven minutes to find the back of the net, Charlie Smeeton nodded the ball across the box and Warren Bentley steered it home with his head.
The same two players were involved in a reverse move a few minutes later but Smeeton's goal was ruled offside with only the Assistant Referee thinking he was offside.
City continued to press and Ryan Holloway dropped the perfect ball to Zack Glasspool but he shot well over as the ball bounced up in front off him off a divot.
Glassspool then nicked the post with a free kick and in the next attack he hit a long range shot which the 'keeper, Dan Cheney, did well to push round for a corner.
Several more promising moves were ruled out by the persistent flag waving by the Assistant Referee. Taz Roberts worked well down the flank well supported by Ryan Holloway and Zack Glasspool, in particular, worked very hard in the box with no goal to reward him. He was frustrated by the offside decisions.
Playing with the wind in their faces, the second half was one of complete domination for City, the wind now held the ball for the Visitors allowing them to create more openings.
Winchester went further ahead in the 49th minute when a melee occurred with Bournemouth unable to clear their lines. Eventually to ball popped out to Jaimie Thoroughgood on the edge of the box and he steered it through a tangle of legs past the 'keeper.
The 100th goal of the season came in the 53rd minute when some good football from Glasspool gave Chris Mason an opening and he took the century honours with a close range shot.
On the hour City made two changes, Mason and Roberts were given a rest to be replaced by Liam Robinson and Stuart Green.
For a brief period the Poppies looked more enterprising in attack but the City defence gave nothing away and 'keeper Gareth Barfoot hardly got his bright orange strip dirty.
The last change was made in the 71st minute when Danilo Cadete replaced Smeeton. Three minutes later City increased their lead when Cadete linked with Bentley whose shot was touched out by the 'keeper. Dominic Cope pounced on the loose ball and scored from an oblique angle.
Glasspool was frustrated once again when a great cross came in from Bentley and he was positioned perfectly at the far post with Cadete just behind him. The ball narrowly missed Glasspool to give Cadete an easy tap-in. It was not to be Glasspool's day.
The goal of the match came in the 87th minute when Micky Hubbard lashed home from the edge of the box.
A very satisfying fact also came out of the game, it was City's sixth clean sheet in succession and with promotion possibly coming down to goal difference those six shut-outs could prove vital.
City: Gareth Barfoot, Ryan Holloway, Dominic Cope, Micky Hubbard, Jaimie Thoroughgood, Adam Roberts, Chris Mason, Zac Glasspool, Warren Bentley, Stuart Green, Liam Robinson and Danilo Cadete.