Match Details: 23/03/1999
Yeovil Town 3 Southport 1
Yeovil Town scorers: Pickard (20), Patmore (41), Fishlock (79)
Yeovil Town line-up:
Substitutes: Smith (not used), Pounder (not used), Keeling (45 minutes for Hannigan)
Team Selection: Rob Cousins returned to his usual place in the defence after recovering from the knee injury which kept him out of the Hednesford game. Kevan Brown failed a fitness test on his hamstring before the game so Dean Chandler kept his place in the back three.
First Half: A fairly even 45 minutes in terms of posession and chances created with both teams tending to cancel each others efforts out, nevertheless Yeovil found themselves going in at the break 2 goals to the good.
Southport produced the first clear-cut chance of the game when the lively Lee Trundle belied his name when he received the ball with his back to the goal, turned and shot just over the bar. Trundle, Lee Furlong and Lee Elam proved troublesome to Yeovil’s defence throughout the game with their pace and their willingness to make runs for their teammates.
Yeovil opened the scoring in the 20th minute however after being awarded a free-kick wide on the left. Steve Thompson provided a perfectly placed cross to the near post and Owen PICKARD rose unchallenged to head past Southport ‘keeper Billy Stewart, leaving him with no chance of saving.
Both teams continued to press forward with Southport’s Furlong shooting narrowly wide and Steve Thompson coming close with a clever lob after break ing from the halfway line. Owen Pickard made a similar break just after but wasted the chance after his shot was blocked with Phil Simpson waiting unmarked in the Southport penalty area.
In the 41st minute Steve Thompson received the ball wide on the left and from a similar position from where he provided the first goal, sent over another perfectly placed near-post cross for Warren PATMORE to head home, again leaving Stewart with no chance. Southport again pressed forward, forcing a couple of corners but Yeovil survived to enter half-time with a 2 goal advantage.
Half Time: Yeovil Town 2 Southport 0
Second Half: Al-James Hannigan had been struggling towards the end of the first half with a leg injury and it was no real surprise when he was replaced at the beginning of the second half by Darren Keeling, Warren Patmore dropping back into Hannigan’s place in defence. Southport also made two changes at half-time, Formby and Ross replacing Trundle and Quinn. Yeovil’s rearguard were still re-organising when in the 47th minute the dangerous Lee Elam provided a perfect cross for Lee FURLONG to volley home an unstoppable shot from six yards out.
Southport were looking the more likely team now and began to dominate possession in midfield, with Kevin Formby forcing a good save from Pennock and then shooting just over the bar. Yeovil were still occasionally threatening with Phil Simpson in particular looking dangerous, combining well with Darren Keeling to shoot just wide. Southport’s best chance came from a corner in the 63rd minute with Scott Guyett’s powerful header forcing Tony Pennock into an excelle nt reaction save.
Gradually however Yeovil were coming back into the game with Keeling beginning to worry the Southport defence and Simpson probing intelligently. Southport survived a penalty appeal after Keeling appeared to be dragged down in the box but were eventually punished in the 79th minute. Yeovil were awarded an indirect free kick inside the penalty area after a Southport defender’s feet were adjudged to be too high. The ball was touched to Murray FISHLOCK who fired home a piledriver past the Southport wall and into the roof of the net. The rest of the game was dominated by Yeovil with Darren Keeling being denied twice by good saves by Billy Stewart in the Southport goal. Four wins in a row then for the Glovers who seem to be regaining the winning habit just at the right time.
Final Score: Yeovil Town 3 Southport 1
Verdict: Not the most convincing of performances from the Glovers but they did enough to take the points. Perhaps the 3-1 scoreline flattered us slightly but the win was deserved, especially when one considers Yeovil played half the game with a makeshift defence. Ultimately the main difference between the teams was that Yeovil took their chances, Southport didn’t.
Jon’s Man of the Match – Phil Simpson: This is getting monotonous! Yet again Phil looked our most creative player and although he played no direct part in any of our goals he was the player who was making things happen for Yeovil throughout the game. After a bit of a dodgy start he’s really starting to settle into the side now and looks to be an important signing.
Badger’s Man of the Match – Rob Cousins: With Kevan Brown out with a sore hamstring, Rob’s task was a difficult one. However, not only did he perform his own duties well, he marshalled Dean Chandler well, and in the second half Warren Patmore, frequently cleaning up when they found the going tough.