Welling United secured their second win over Yeovil Town this season, completing the double and ending the Glovers’ unbeaten record at home. It was not a pretty afternoon at Huish Park, and here are Ian’s Five Conclusions…

Jay Foulston challenges for the ball. Picture courtesy of Gary Brown.

It all fell apart when Michael Smith went off. His quality is undeniable and we’re a significantly better team with him in it. But, surely he’s not THAT important. After Smith’s injury in the 15th minute, Yeovil lost all flow, rhythm and patterns of play. There was a very brief switch to a back three, with Jay Foulston left of the three, but that quickly shifted back to a back four with moved Foulston to right back. He really struggled. He didn’t look comfortable offensively or defensively and the part of Jordan Young’s game that depends on the overlapping and defensive security of Smith was lost too.

Our attackers are struggling. Mark Cooper said that the goals had ‘dried up’ following the match and it was a match where there was little flow from the forward players. Frank Nouble and Sonny Blu Lo-Everton swapped positions in the first half to try and make things happen. (I thought Nouble looked more effective through the middle.) Jordan Young had another game where nothing clicked. He had some sloppy moments in possession and didn’t make the impact we’ve come to expect. Sam Pearson wasn’t able to get into a full flow and show his pace and neither was Jordan Stevens. It was only when Olly Thomas came on and he had a couple of decent chances, that Yeovil really threatened.

Olly Thomas shoots at goal. Picture courtesy of Gary Brown.

You have to give credit to Welling. They’ve done us in league twice now, and with two very different teams. They weathered the early storm from Yeovil and managed to create a few half chances and shots from distance. Their goal came from a calamitous error from Charlie Cooper, but it was a great finish from Anthony Grant who rifled the ball into the top corner from a tight angle. With less than 20 minutes on the clock, it then became an exercise in seeing the game out and the Wings did it masterfully. Time taken in dead ball situations, patience in the corners keeping the ball away from Yeovil. 

We seemed to lose our composure. Morgan Williams and Jake Wannell have been a calming influence at the back all season, but there was a mad spell in the second half where they were caught out by Welling and conceded fouls. Wannell relished the first half battle with Reece Grant and largely controlled it, but in a second half where most players seemed to get shaky, it was noticeable when they struggled. Perhaps because their standards have been so high. Through the midfield we kept trying to go long, hitting hopeful balls towards Sam Pearson, who was on a hiding to nothing against Welling’s big back line. 

Morgan Williams rises highest. Picture courtesy of Gary Brown.

Don’t panic! With Chelmsford’s win against Truro City yesterday evening, the gap at the top is nine points with a game in hand. There’s a chance to move on quickly against Chippenham and Tuesday and with a bright cameo from Olly Thomas, we could soon have a focal point at the top of the pitch. It was hard to stomach defeat at the final whistle, and there was almost a stunned silence when proceedings came to an end. So remarkable has the home form been, that defeat was hard to take. However, we have the buffer at the top and a chasing pack that’s inconsistent. On to Tuesday!

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Goal Lover
4 months ago

Yep, the impact Michael Smith has on the rest of the team is obvious, and the absence of a potentially 30 goal a season striker like Murphy is notable.