A game of two halves saw Yeovil Town held to a draw against an impressive St Albans City side in an entertaining encounter at Clarence Park.

The visitors had the upper hand in the first half and deservedly went ahead through Jordan Young after 19 minutes, before the forward had two great chances to double the advantage including one which came off the post.

But, St Albans, who lost manager David Noble on the eve of the game as he joined National League Premier side Wealdstone, rallied after the break and levelled early through Mitchell Weiss.

The Glovers rode their luck as the home side pressed for a winner and were indebted to goalkeeper Joe Day on a couple of occasions as they held on for a draw.

Here’s Dave’s view from his position in the away end…..


First half

The first opening fell the visitors way after five minutes when Sonny Blu Lo-Everton picked out Frank Nouble on the left of the box, but the striker opted to fire across the face of goal rather than on target. No-one was there to get a telling touch.

Thereafter the game lived up to its billing as a battle of two footballing sides. Free-flowing attacking play was on display with the Glovers enjoying the better of it, but they were unable to carve another opening. 
It took until the 17th minute for a hosts’ keeper Michael Johnson to be called in to action. A flick on by Nouble set Pearson free and his effort was well turned aside by the keeper.
Two minutes later Pearson was at the heart of the attack which gave Yeovil the opener. The former Bristol City man broke free and squared it to Jordan YOUNG who smashed the visitors in to a deserved lead.
Yeovil Town celebrate Jordan Young’s opener.
But just three minutes later the hosts’ top scorer, former Glover Shaun Jeffers, had a a gilt-edged chance to level the scores. Midfielder George Hoddle laid the ball off to him and his effort was goal-bound, but Michael Smith was patrolling the line to clear the danger.
On 26 minutes, a great jinking run from Young in to the box saw him lash a shot against the post, and on the half-hour mark Jack James saw an effort well stopped by Joe Day.
With six minutes of the first half remaining, Young had another glorious opportunity to double the lead. He took advantage of a loose back pass but lifted his shot over the bar with Nouble steaming in to the middle of the box.
The visitors could legitimately have expected to go in further ahead at the break, but with St Albans having some good opportunities of their own a 1-0 advantage at half-time felt about right.

Half time:  St Albans City 0 Yeovil Town 1

Second half

Within two minutes of the restart the home side were level. A ball to the back post was met by Mitchell WEISS who steered it past the helpless Day.

The bright start continued to with St Albans in the ascendency for the opening ten minutes of the second half without creating much in the way of clear-cut opportunities. 

A block from Jake Wannell to deny Zane Banton around the hour mark was as close as it came, whilst the attacking style which brought them success in the first half abandoned Yeovil who struggled to deal with the rampant Saints.

On 62 minutes, Smith hooked a ball which seemed certain to go out for a goal kick over the stranded Johnson but it was over the head of Nouble as well.

St Albans keeper Michael Johnson claims a ball from a Yeovil cross.

St Albans continued to look the more likely to score as they continued to press, but Young had another great opportunity on 73 minutes. He dribbled his way forward and in to the box, but took too long to pull the trigger and the chance disappeared.

With 12 minutes remaining, Mark Cooper introduced Dylan Morgan in place of Lo-Everton, and worryingly soon after Michael Smith limped off with what looked like a hamstring strain. He was replaced by Jay Foulston.

The Saints continued their relentless pressure and on 84 minutes the ball pinballed around inside the box. With a crowd of bodies blocking the view from the away end it was a hard one to follow, but I was most pleased to see the falling frame of Day drop on the ball.

On 86 minutes, another goalmouth scramble saw the keeper drop again on the line. Some goal service apps adjudged the ball to have crossed the line, fortunately the assistant did not.

Will Dawes was thrown on in place of Young as Yeovil looked to find a different way through, but it was to no avail.

On the strength of a strong first half, this could have been considered two points dropped but St Albans deserved a share of the spoils for their second half performance.

Full time: St Albans City 1 Yeovil Town 1 


Match Details

Venue: Clarence Park
Date: Saturday 27th January – 3pm

Competition: National League South

Pitch: Rutted in the penalty areas but otherwise in good nick
Conditions: Dry and cool

Attendance: 2,813 (470 away supporters)

Scorers: Jordan Young 19 (1-0), Mitchell Weiss 47 (1-1)

Yeovil Town:
Jake Wannell 55, Matt Worthington 80, Michael Smith 82
St Albans City: Ryan Blackman 32

Yeovil Town (4-5-1)

Substitutes: Dylan Morgan (for Sonny Blu Lo-Everton, 78), Jay Foulston (for Michael Smith, 82), Will Dawes (for Jordan Young, 85).


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