Nationwide Conference :
Yeovil Town 2 – 1 Hereford United

Att: 3,022

Line up : (4-4-2)

Chris Weale

Adam Lockwood

Tom White

Terry Skiverton

Anthony Tonkin

Nick Crittenden

Roy O’Brien

Olivier Brassart

Michael McIndoe

Adam Stansfield

Chris Giles

Subs used: Carl Alford (67, for Giles), Andy Lindegaard (82, for White)

M.Baker, M.Clarke, I.Wright, T.James, J.Shirley, I.Rodgerson, J.Snape, S.Goodwin, P.Parry, R.Elmes, G.Williams

Sub used: J.Quiggin (90, for Goodwin)

Scorers: CRITTENDEN (45, 1-0), Parry (47, 1-1), LINDEGAARD (90, 2-1)

This report courtesy of Fe7:

The biggest smile around Huish Park at five oclock belonged to one of the smallest players on the park, Andy Lindegaard. A left footed strike by Lindegaard from the edge of the Hereford penalty box deep into injury time clinched a finely balanced game and earned Yeovil three invaluable points. Such success was compensation for a season hindered by injury: Lindegaard is still working his way back to fitness from double groin surgery and was undoubtedly short of match practice.

The darling of the Yeovil faithful, had had little chance to prove his credentials since Gary Johnsons arrival, but todays goal will be a good basis for the future. In truth given a fully fit squad Lindegaard may not have featured in Johnsons plans today. As it was Darren Way, Lee Johnson and Steve Thompson were all unable to start todays game so, much to Lindegaards surprise, he was included on the substitutes bench.

Yeovil and Hereford matched each other for eighty minutes and the score was 1-1 before Lindegaard took to the field. Yeovil had much of the possession for that time but had failed to make it pay and put the game beyond Hereford.

Yeovil should have taken the lead early in the first half when Chris Giles was charitable awarded a penalty after seventeen minutes: a clumsy challenge inside the Hereford box was at best innocuous. It was the youthful Chris Giles who took responsibility for converting the spot kick, but his shot lacked conviction or power and Matthew Baker in the Hereford goal, diving to his left, pushed the shot away to safety.

Yeovil rode their luck on twenty seven minutes when a Paul Parry shot struck the Yeovil cross bar and bounced down, apparently over the goal line, but back into play. Unfortunately for Hereford there was no Russian linesman on hand to advise todays official, Mr Postles, and Chris Weale gratefully collected the rebound.

Minutes later it was Hereford who were the fortunate as Lockwoods cross found Stansfield in the six yard box, but Stansfield lost the ball under his body and, as Giles looked on, the two Hereford defenders eventually cleared the ball.

Lady luck was to smile on Yeovil again as half time approached. This time Nick Crittenden weaved his way into the Hereford box, and, playing a cross-come-shot to the far post the ball took a significant deflection off a Hereford body and crept inside the far post with Baker helpless. Yeovil 1 Hereford 0.

While refereeing discussions can always be questionable it was pleasing to see Mr Postles’ conservative use of the yellow cards, while competitive the game had never been dirty.

Half Time: Yeovil 1 Hereford 0.

Gary Johnsons half time talk should have mentioned make sure we keep it tight at the back for the first twenty minutes. So, true to form, on 47 minutes Adam Lockwood and Chris Weale conspired to gift Hereford their equaliser. While Lockwood leaving an optimistic long ball for Weale to collect, Weale was out of touch and slow off his line: Paul Parry snuck in between the two to slide the ball past the Yeovil keeper. Yeovil 1 Hereford 1.

As the game proceeded Mr Postles was unable, through no fault of his own, to keep a clean sheet as in the first half. Adam Stansfields speed will always trouble defences and today was no exception, Tony James was the victim as he man handled Stansfield to the ground inside the Hereford half.

Yeovils demands for success are high and these can often work against them. Crittendens enthusiasm boiled over as he contested a throw in decision with the referees assistant in front of the Hereford support, and was subsequently carded by Mr Postles.

The Yeovil defence were now unsettled and producing a number of heart stopping moments: Skiverton and Weale seemed to take an age to decide who should deal with a simple clearance; Skiverton played Lockwood into trouble, Hereford were again on the break; Chris Weale emulated Manchester Uniteds Barthez as he dribbled around the Hereford left winger, and set Yeovil pulses racing.

Throughout the game Yeovil pressed forward but Herefords defence were composed and rarely did the Yeovil attack call Baker into making a crucial save.

On sixty-six minutes Carl Alford replaced Chris Giles and Yeovil seemed to up the tempo, there was now urgency as the final minutes ticked away. This succeeded in increasing the demands players placed on themselves and MacIndoes competitiveness got the better of him. In an off-the-ball tussle was spotted striking a Hereford midfielder, regardless of the standard of refereeing the rules are quite clear and Mr Postles had little alternative but to show Macca the red card. Gary Johnson must have rued the decision to demote Macca as he seemed to exhibit a higher level of self-control as captain.

With MacIndoe off the pitch Gary Johnson was faced with a number of dilemmas. Needing to win this game, but with four defenders and three midfielders in the pitch his initial reaction was to push Tom White forward. Tom stuck to this role for a number of minutes but Johnson was left with one card to play, Andy Lindegaard. On 81 minutes Lindegaard was thrown on to an unfamiliar left mid-field position and the remaining three mid-fielders remained undisturbed.

Lindegaard had not run out for the first team since his substitution for Roy O’Brien against Scarborough on 15 September. That is the day O’Brien broke his leg, and Lindegaard had been instrumental in Yeovils come back from a 0-2 half time score-line. Not surprisingly Lindy struggled to settle in, never too sure to help out at the back, making one important penalty box challenge, or supporting the strike force.

But if lady luck was smiling today, she smiled on the Yeovil talisman. Yeovils performance last season with Lindegaard on the pitch is as good as that of Adam Stansfield this season. With three minutes of injury time announced the Huish Park clock had been motionless for at least two when Carl Alford won an aerial challenge outside the Hereford box. The short pass fell for Andy Lindegaard and his instinct took over. His left foot, new boots and all, did the business. In a moment that has gone forever, his shot whistled inside Bakers right hand post. It was a Yeovil moment of sheer fairy tale, a memory that will live in a young mans mind, and the record books, forever.

The Yeovil players buried their hero under a mound of green and white bodies on the edge of the Hereford box, the Westland Stand burst into song, and we were able to celebrate Lindys achievement, in a period that seemed forever as the unfortunate Scott Goodwin was eventually stretchered from the pitch. The Yeovil tannoy announced The second goal for Yeovil scored by number sixteen Andy Lindegaard. Yeovil 2 Hereford 1.

It would have been more than life could bear if Hereford equalised thereafter, and in this instance, life was not that cruel. Weathering two further Hereford attacks, and Stansfield should have made it 3-1, the fairy tale was complete.

Full Time: Yeovil 2 Hereford 1.

The 3-5-2 v 4-4-2 argument is well documented around Yeovil. Todays first half provided at least one positive note: Tonkin was able to make significant forays into the Hereford box right from the off. On the downside Chris Weale is not so confident when playing behind Skiverton and White. Skiverton, buoyed by his wonder goal at Doncaster, made a powerful return to Huish Park: best performance of the season. The return of Roy O’Brien, ably supported by Olivier Brassart, added extra fight in the midfield: both giving best performance of the season. Five fit central midfielders would obviously give Gary Johnson a pleasant dilemma. But performance of the day goes to Andy Lindegaard, to quote I only touched the ball twice what a strike rate what a fairy tale.