O's Secured Three Points Over Basement Side
Oldland returned from Weymouth Street in Wiltshire with three valuable points in their quest for a top 6 spot.
Oldland made the long mid week trip to Wiltshire to play relegation threatened side Warminster Town FC. The O's were able to welcome back Luke Lecrass, Jack Dempsey and Liam Gale all who missed the game against Bishops Lydeard through other commitments and holidays. Donald Soloman late arrival at the ground prompted a re shuffle with Josh Southway slotting in at full back and Luke Lecrass coming into the midfield. Liam Gale replaced the unavailable Owen Badham.
The pitch was in good condition given the recent weather however it was very wet and sticky. Oldland started the game well in an unorthodox shape which took a little time to get used to but they began to create chance. The first chance game when Luke Lecrass worked the ball well with Jack Metcalf who gave it back to Luke Lecrass who then played a delightful round the corner ball allowing Liam Gale to run at the opposition defence. Liam Gale drove into the box after beating the full back for pace but the home goalkeeper pulled off a great save low to his left. Oldland didn't have it their own way when Warminster's Lewis Graham picked up the ball went on a mazy run only to be denied by Chris Manns. Oldland then restricted Warminster to long range shots which either sailed harmlessly over the cross bar or wide of the target. Oldland created one of their best chances of the half. A set piece was cleared and then re delivered only to find towering veteran centre half Andy Criddle One vs One with the host goalkeeper. Andy Criddle opted for the outside of the right boot curling finished which bent over the top of the bar, when it was probably easier to score then miss. Lewis Parker played Liam Gale in down the left hand side but his cross evaded everyone.
The second half began very much like the first half for both sides in the setting mist. Oldland created a couple of half chances during the early exchanges but couldn't seem to get a firm foot hold or grip on the game. Oldland suffered a early set back when a very good delivery from Warminster's Mark Young was met by the head of the on rushing striker who headed the ball past Chris Manns. An Immediate double substitution by manager Scott Armstrong saw Jordan Chubb and Scott Fear replace Alex Chapman and Jack Dempsey. This also saw a change of shape which worked wonders for the O's. Oldland got themselves back on level terms with a 35 yard thunderbolt by Luke Lecrass following a clearance at a corner. What a hit and What a goal. Unfortunately the limelight from the goal was taken away from Lecrass due to a very serious injury and concern for midfielder Lewis Parker who collapsed and fell lifeless in the host box. Thankfully due to great sportsmanship, great treatment from both physio's and refereeing Lewis was able to be treated and looked after. Lewis was stretched off to a great round of applause by all in the ground as he continued to be treated off the field. Donald Soloman then replaced Lewis Parker in the side which saw Josh Southway pushed forward into the midfield. Oldland created a glorious chance to take the lead when Jordan Chubb played in Liam Gale who went round the goalkeeper but his shot was brilliantly cleared off the line. Liam Gale also had a excellent free kick saved and turned onto the cross bar by the hosts goalkeeper as Oldland pushed for the winner. The O's did take the lead when good build up play in the midfield and a pass by Scott Fear saw Liam Gale weave his way into the box only to be clumsily challenged by a home player. The referee rightly so awarded a spot kick which Joe Walters despatched to the goalkeepers right as he went the wrong way. Oldland the wrapped up the game with Liam Gale finally getting his goal that he deserved when he cut inside from the right and despatched the ball into the bottom corner of the net giving the O's three points.
The result saw Oldland climb the league table with games in hand. Unfortunately for the hosts it sees them looking at relegation in the face which is a great shame for a lovely club and good facilities.
FT- Warminster Town FC 1 - 3 Oldland Abbotonians FC
Man of the Match was awarded to Luke Lecrass for a solid influential display on his return.
Manager Scott Armstrong added, "It was nice to test myself against one of my former managers and for someone who I highly regard on the non league scene. It was great to get back to winning ways and I am pleased with the three points. Id like to say a massive thank you to everyone who help with the treatment and care for our player everyone was fantastic. Moving forward as a side we must now build on the victory and push on. On our hosts, I thought they played well and was unlucky not to maybe get something. I hope they can avoid the drop as its my home town club with great facilities and certainly not the worst place to come compared to other clubs"