It was a game that Yeovil Town couldn’t really win. A defeat at Yate Town on Saturday and the headlines would’ve been of the heroic giant-killers who’d felled their hapless higher division opponents.

A win and the story is about the plucky minnows who tried their hardest and did ever so well to get to the first round.

So, an emphatic victory, a clean sheet and a place in the draw for the second round will have to do it. Here’s David Coates‘ Five Conclusions from his trip to Lodge Road….

Let’s start with the most obvious thing; that was exactly the kind of ruthless and professional display we needed. An early goal (whoever it was ended up scoring it) silenced a home crowd which never really got the chance to show it if could be hostile or not, and then two more in quick succession kicked the stuffing out of tie. Yes, we were playing against a team of HGV drivers and probate lawyers, but how many times has an FA Cup shock been produced by such professions? No, postmen in the Yate side, mind you. But, we needed to put them to the sword in the first half and we did that. Darren Sarll asked for us to be “ruthless and professional”  before the match and he certainly got both those things.

When we signed up a kid who’d been released by Bromley and had a history of injuries, I have to say I was not feeling inspired about what he could bring. But, I think I may be falling a little in love with Charlie Wakefield – in the Gloverscast spirit of falling in love with footballers, I mean. That boy never seems to tire of picking up the ball and running at defenders, and I don’t just mean at Yate although he displayed all the athleticism his manager has spoken so much about. No, I saw this for Charlie (not sure I can bring myself call him ‘Chaz’) the first time I saw him at Aldershot and every time I have seen him, he’s impressed me.

That said, Matt Worthington is starting to look the part. Now whether him playing alongside his fellow flame-haired midfielder Dale Gorman gives the impression of there being two of him or not, I don’t know. But, yesterday Worthington looked composed on the ball, was bursting forward in a way I don’t recall seeing him doing so and even if he didn’t score (or did he?!), he impressed me in his 67 minutes. Yes, yes, part-time time, lower league, minnows opponents and blah, blah….. but this looked like the Matt Worthington we spoke about wanting to see more of in the summer and I am all for it.

For a club with one of the smallest squads in the division and injuries to a couple of key players, our substitutes’ bench looks decent. We were only able to name six of the allowed seven substitutes, but to be able to bring on Luke Wilkinson, Joe Quigley, Alex Bradley and Sonny Blu Lo-Everton is a good position to be in. It was good to see Morgan Williams back in action, he was not really too troubled by the Yate forward line in his time on the pitch, but did most things well and hopefully we’ll see more of him in the weeks to come.

Finally, £22,629 is not a myth. That is the prize money for winning a first round tie. The manager suggested before the match that the financial benefits of progressing in the FA Cup were “a bit of a myth” – and in the context he meant of seeing it in his playing budget, he’s probably quite right. But, add the prize money for a first round win together with the fourth qualifying round prize money and you’re already over £32,000, and that is before you add in half the gate receipts for those ties. Glenn Collis, the director we are led to believe is part of one of two consortiums looking to buy the club, was clearly visible at Lodge Road on Saturday – which is more than can be said for his AWOL fellow director, club chairman Scott Priestnall. There’s been a suggestion that progress in the FA Cup – and the lure of prize money and gate receipts that comes with it – has led to those in charge of the club to not make decisions in the past. Let’s hope it is a myth that the current custodians, who have always claimed to want what is best for our club, are not motivated by prize money.

Look, I managed all that without mentioning that we look great at the back (which we do, incidentally) or that we struggle to score which is probably difficult to back up after a 5-0 win.

The quadruple dream lives on – bring on the Larkhall!

 

 


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