Match Details: 07/08/1999
Salisbury City 1 Yeovil Town 2
Pre-season Friendly

Starting line-up:

1. Tony Pennock
2. Dave Piper
3. Tony Pounder
4. Kevan Brown
5. Terry Skiverton
6. Rob Cousins
7. Ben Smith
8. Steve Stott
9 Warren Patmore
10. Adrian Foster
11. Jason Eaton

Subs (all used): Phil Simpson, David Norton, Jamie Pitman, Matt Hayfield, Paul Steele.

Match Report:

A dominant first half performance from Yeovil that should have rewarded them with more than just the single goal as they heavily controlled possession and chances in an excellent first half display.

Yeovil started with the same attacking formation that had brought them so much success in mid-week as Patmore Eaton and Foster all took the field. It was Foster who produced the early highlights, firstly when his 10th minute shot looped from 25 yards and produced a great save from Salisbury keeper Paul Myers as the ball was tipped over the crossbar. But Foster wasted an easier chance a minute later when he was left in acres of space but his tame shot produced an easy save.

Warren Patmore got in on the act in the 13th minute with a header from a Smith corner but he was unlucky to see it cleared off the line. However, it was another Smith corner in the 18th minute that looked to have gone beyond Adrian FOSTER until his acrobatic overhead kick went past Myers’ post from 10 yards out.

Salisbury’s chances were limited to just two with one shot clearing the bar whilst Pennock was drawn into action just once with a fine blocking save. Jason Eaton completed the half with a fine solo run but his shot skewed wide.

The second half began with David Norton and Matt Hayfield replacing Steve Stott and Jason Eaton, and Yeovil started brightly. Adrian Foster once again missed an early chance, slicing his chance wide of the goalkeeper’s left hand post. This seemed not to matter when 52 minutes in, Tony Pounder, in for the injured Murray Fishlock, made a darting run into the penalty area and was clearly tripped. Despite Adrian Foster looking interested, it was Warren PATMORE who stepped up and shot firmly into the net, despite the goalkeeper getting a hand onto the ball.

Salisbury had started the half looking alot sharper, and they found themselves only a goal down in the 58th minute, when a corner kick produced a bicycle kick from Robbie HARBUT who scored, comically from an identical position and identical move to Yeovil’s opening goal.

There on in, Yeovil lost their shape badly. Jamie Pitman and Phil Simpson came on with Dave Piper and Ben Smith, who had another wonderful game, coming off. Without Smith and Stott on the field, Yeovil seemed to be suddenly out of ideas, and it was Salisbury who went on the march with pacey midfielder Tyronne Bowers proving to be a thorn in Yeovil’s side as he tried to out-Smith Ben Smith, his trickery only let down by poor finishing and good work by Tony Pennock.

Kevan Brown picked up a knock with 10 minutes to go, and so was replaced by Paul Steele, although this looked purely precautionary, and at this point even Salisbury fizzled out in the hot sun, with only Phil Simpson’s solo run, after he was put through by David Norton, threatening to increase the scoreline.

After the game, several Yeovil players said they had wilted badly in the sun, and whilst this is possible, it was concerning that this didn’t seem to affect Salisbury to such an extent. Ben Smith was again one of the bright moments of the match – he is clearly determined not to let his guard slip now that he is within sight of regaining his place in Yeovil’s Conference teams.

With the friendlies now over, there seems little doubt that the following players must start up at Scarborough : Pennock, Piper, Fishlock, Brown, Cousins, Skiverton, Stott, Smith and Patmore. This leaves two positions left to fill, depending on whether Colin Lippiatt decides to play all three forwards on the pitch at the same time. It has clearly worked well so far, so I’m inclined to believe that Patmore, Eaton and Foster will all take the field next Saturday. If Lippiatt wants to play more cautious then I would expect Matt Hayfield to take a starting place. Which one of Foster or Eaton should be left out under these circumstances is nearly impossible to determine.

Foster created most of the chances against Salisbury today but was guilty of spurning two golden chances, whilst Eaton has been the most consistent marksman of the two during the friendlies. If either gets dropped, expect the unlucky one to be fired up ready to come off the bench at a moments notice.

Full time: Salisbury City 1 Yeovil Town 2