Winchester 7 Slimbridge 0
Winchester obtained their biggest win since returning to the Southern League and maybe their best ever Southern League victory (I am in the process of checking that out). They scored 7 goals in beating Bridgwater on the opening day of last season, but conceded two on that occasion. Having lost 5-3 at Slimbridge on the opening day of the season the result was some form of revenge, and last season we only recorded a narrow win and a draw against the team from Gloucestershire.
There were two changes to the starting line-up from Saturday's win at Bideford with Danny Smith and Lewis Tallack replacing Adam Roberts and Jack Hannam, with the latter dropping to the bench.
Slimbridge had the first shot of note when Lewis Noice did well to tip an effort from Sean Lawson round the post at the expense of a corner. At the other end Joe Briggs had a cross intercepted and Ben Reed in the Slimbridge goal only just kept out a free kick from Jamie Barron.
Although the Winchester defence at times looked hesitant at times in the early stages they gradually got on top and took the lead in the 20th minute when after a corner was not cleared Adam Tomasso was on hand to score after youngster I K Hill had hit the post. Craig Feeney then had a shot saved at the expense of a corner and it was a corner that led to Winchester's second with Craig Feeney scoring following a goalmouth scramble.
A spectacular shot from well outside the area by Jamie Barron made it 3-0 in the 38th minute and Winchester came close to scoring again in a very satisfactory first half from their point of view, while those within hearing distance were able to notice dissatisfaction coming from the Slimbrdge dressing room.
Early in the second half Howard Neighbour replaced Stuart Green and the substitute set up Feeney for his 2nd and Winchester's 4th in the 52nd minute. Feeney by this stage was running rampant and he scored further goals in the 55th and 67th minute to make it 6-0, one of which was set up by Neighbour. Between the fifth and sixth goals Slimbridge did rally briefly with Marley Thomas and Lee Smith having on target shots, but Winchester made it 7-0 win the 76th minute when Jack Hannam scored with a well struck shot shortly after coming on as substitute to complete an emphatic victory, which also represented Slimbridge's biggest ever defeat since their reformation.
Before the game a minute's silence was observed in memory of Winchester's former coach Darren Burdle and since then Fleet chairman Steve Cantle has also passed on, only 2.5 weeks after Winchester played at Fleet in the Hampshire Senior Cup.