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Bath City (2)2 Eastbourne Borough (0)1

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Post by Kelston Koppite Sat Jan 22, 2022 8:06 pm

Bath City produced a performance consisting of both enterprise and gritty determination to overcome the challenge of Eastbourne Borough at Twerton Park.  It was a well-deserved victory for a City squad that was bereft of players with Jerry Gill being forced to name just two substitutes, one of which being goalkeeper Will Fuller.

Another impressive crowd of 1,001 were treated to an opening half brimming with attacking intent by the hosts during which they created numerous opportunities in front of goal.  The early stages, however, were fairly low key with the teams seeking superiority.  The first chance fell to Cody Cooke in the 8th minute following a free kick from Elliot Frear, but the striker poked his shot wide from close range.

City gradually gained the upper hand and almost forged ahead on 12 minutes.  Frear was again the provider from the left and Alex Fletcher flicked the b all goalwards from inside the 6-yard box, only to be denied by a brilliant point-blank reflex save from Borough keeper Lee Worgan.

The Romans took the lead in the 16th minute when debutant loanee Ben Seymour crossed from the left and Fletcher headed beyond Worgan and over the goal-line despite the desperate efforts of a defender.

Bath were now well on top, with Eastbourne being pushed back into their own territory.  Dylan Kadji tried his luck from outside the box on 18 minutes, but was horribly wide of the target

It was not until the half hour mark that the visitors produced their first effort at goal.  Jaden Perez picked up the ball 25 yards out produced a shot that bounce in front of Ryan Clarke, the home custodian gathering at the second attempt.

Eastbourne were slowly beginning to enjoy more possession, but it was City who had a golden opportunity to add to the scoreline in the 37th minute.  Good play by Kadji in midfield saw him play a perfect through pass sent Seymour through on goal, only for his shot to be partially blocked by the advancing Worgan, with a defender completing the final clearance off the line.  This proved to be a temporary reprieve for The Sports as City doubled their lead four minutes later.  A short corner routine concluded with a Cooke cross from which Fletcher expertly found the corner of the net with a glancing header.

The hosts emerged after the break and, playing towards the Bath End, continued to push forward in search of further reward.  Fletcher threaded the ball through to Frear in the 50th minute, but the wide-man’s angled shot from the edge of the area rolled narrowly wide of the far post.  At the other end, James Hammond’s tame free kick was straight at Clarke.

As City continued to dominate, Joe Raynes’ corner from the right on the hour mark picked out Kadji, but his looping header landed on the roof of the net.  

The East Sussex side finally found a lifeline on 68 minutes when substitute Leone Gravata struck a firm shot from 20 yards into the bottom corner of Clarke’s net.  This heralded a complete change in the balance of the game with Borough now totally dominating possession, and City being largely pegged back into their own half.

The visitors came close to an equaliser in the 70th minute when Charlie Walker found space in the home box, only to fire his angled drive across the face of goal and wide of the far post.  

Tom Richards came on from Kadji on 71 minutes, but this failed to reverse the flow of play.  Walker volleyed just over Clarke’s crossbar, and then Gravata headed wide of the far post after a dangerous cross from the right.

Despite being under pressure, Bath still posed a threat on the break and Tom Smith could have secured the points 5 minutes from time, but his drive from the edge of the area was wide of the target.

Clarke was forced into an excellent save at his near post when Gravata found space in the box, but it was the home side who had the final opening as the game entered stoppage time.  Richards slipped the ball through to Cooke who had a clear sight of goal, but his effort was well saved by Worgan at the expense of a corner.

The final whistle sounded after 4 added minutes and City had secured a deserved, but hard fought, victory.  The hosts were rightly given a rousing ovation for their efforts in a proverbial game of two halves.  They were well on top for the first 65 minutes but had to show great resolve to repel late pressure from an in-form and free scoring Eastbourne side.  To their credit, the home defence restricted their opponents to very few clear-cut chances and, had they made the most of their first half chances, the game would have been ‘put to bed’ by the interval.

Bath City:  Ryan Clarke, Joe Raynes, Jordan Dyer, Zak Delaney, Dan Ball, Tom Smith, Dylan Kadji (Tom Richards 72 mins), Alex Fletcher, Elliott Frear, Ben Seymour, Cody Cooke.  Sub not used: Will Fuller.

Eastbourne Borough:  Lee Worgan, Jack Currie, Luke Nippard, Steven James, Joel Rollinson, James Hammond, Greg Luer, Charlie Walker, Jaden Perez, Trent Mahorn, Charley Kendall.  Subs: Jake Elliott, Charlie Towning, Dominic Hutchinson, Leone Gravata, Finlay Holter.

Referee:         Mr. Wayne Cartmel.

Attendance:  1,001


Last edited by Kelston Koppite on Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:18 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Post by SteveBradley Sat Jan 22, 2022 8:28 pm

Kelston Koppite wrote: Another impressive crowd of 1,001

I don't wish to jinx things, but it seems like four-figure crowds are the proverbial 'new normal' for Bath City FC.

Our average across the 11 home league games so far this season is 1,191, only 2 of which have been below 1,000 (Welling and Hampton/Richmond). 1,001 is actually our next lowest after those two.

Considering what a below-par mixed bag the season has been so far, the attendances have been very encouraging. It vindicates the theory that Community Ownership would open the club up more to the city. Though obviously it's taken hard work by a lot of people to turn that into reality, so full credit to them as it's paying dividends for the club.

Just think what our crowds could be like if we were actually contending for things Very Happy

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Post by comrade powell Sat Jan 22, 2022 10:34 pm

Yes, definitely a game of two halves. I thought the first was really entertaining and there could have been many more than just the two goals. Perhaps with so few options on the bench it was understandable that we tried to close the game up after the break and it needed Eastbourne’s goal to set up a close finish.
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Post by stillmanjunior Sat Jan 22, 2022 11:59 pm

Until they brought on Gravata I thought Eastbourne were surprisingly lacklustre. For a side that's been banging in goals they looked pretty limited going forward, not helped by some woeful set-pieces. Also not helped by us looking well drilled to cope with what they threw at us.

Had it gone on an extra 10 minutes we probably would have conceded simply down to tiredness but it would have been harsh. It reminded me a bit of our win over Havant this time last year - depleted side, we dominated early, went 2-0 up, conceded (earlier in that case) and had to withstand a bit of pressure without the luxury of freshening things up. Something about being short on numbers which brings something out of us. Had we taken our chances in the first half at Ebbsfleet it would have been a different game and we played well despite the result. Last week we had decent options to call upon and played poorly, today we effectively had a bare XI and fought superbly.

The other main difference with the aforementioned Havant game is we were allowed people in the ground today. A four figure gate against Eastbourne in January for two sides in mid-table would have been unthinkable four years ago. These games against Eastbourne and Braintree would have done well to attract four figures combined. Amazing work by a lot of people on and off the pitch.
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Post by BenE Sun Jan 23, 2022 9:36 am

Excellently summed up KK. There were a lot of tired legs out there and I'm sure one ot two others would have been glad if there had been more subs.

With the game on Tuesday they need to recover quickly. Hopefully on or two on the injury list will be available otherwise Will Fuller may make his outfield appearance.
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Post by Beau Nash Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:07 am

I read or heard somewhere yesterday that a club is getting 10% of its local population going to games. For City that would equate to 10k+ just for the Bath population, add on the wider B&NES area and c.15k attendances.  bounce   cheers
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Post by BenE Sun Jan 23, 2022 11:04 am

If Bath Rugby keep losing it may happen
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Post by Kevin Anderson Sun Jan 23, 2022 11:20 am

A very fair summary, KK and thank you for the very full report.

Borough might well have snatched a late point but it would not have been deserved on the run of play. We were awful in the first half - five hours plus on the coach and a late arrival didn't help, but that's no excuse. What we also reflected afterwards was the need for teams to adjust from 3G pitches back to grass (and possibly vice versa). We hadn't played on grass since November at Concord - when we were also poor. I wonder if City find the same thing in reverse. That's not a snipe at the TP pitch, which looked in good shape.

Always an enjoyable occasion when we visit you, and thank you all for the usual cordial welcome. A crowd of 1,001, and I was the one.... Looking forward to the return.

Kevin




























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Post by BenE Sun Jan 23, 2022 11:52 am

Thanks for that Kevin. We were reflecting on your trip up during the game. Late arrival isn't necessarily a disadvantage as we have learnt to our cost in the past but you did seem sluggish for much of the game.
Gravita had a big influence when he came on.
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Post by LB Sun Jan 23, 2022 2:14 pm

The ball actually crossed the line twice for the first goal! I reckon it must have been a foot over before it was cleared and if Fletch had not put the rebound in I am not sure it would have been given as neither referee nor assistant (who wasn't up with play) had a clue what had happened. Will be interesting to see the video (which will probably prove me wrong!)

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Post by Guest Sun Jan 23, 2022 3:25 pm

I remember when the rugby was attracting about 6,000.

Speaking of which, where can you see attendance stats for them? The official premiership rugby website just shows cumulative totals for the season.

A friend who watches them regularly said they'd had noticebly lower home crowds than usual this year with lots of no shows.

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Post by Peter Newman Sun Jan 23, 2022 5:29 pm

I looked across to the Rec about 1.30 yesterday and the temporary stands had plenty of open spaces. Also noticeable was there far fewer Bath Rugby zealots on the 6pm train to Weymouth. Of course with the early kick-off some would have left earlier but at least the extra drinking time meant those who were aboard could be extra obnoxious in order to compensate.

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Post by comrade powell Sun Jan 23, 2022 5:37 pm

Yes I’ve had to put up with their arrogant and entitled fans on the bus out to Frome on a Saturday evening.

According to a fan commenting on the Guardian report of their latest humiliation yesterday most of the home crowd are season ticket holders and so are still attending because they’ve already paid rather than out of loyalty. He thinks there won’t be such a clamour for renewals this summer.
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Post by Luton Roman Sun Jan 23, 2022 7:18 pm

The website stats show Fletcher scoring 7 league goals plus 2 cup but I've counted up 8 league goals and BBC sport NLS top scorers show him with 9 !

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Post by stillmanjunior Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:18 pm

I've got him down as eight league goals and two cup.

We've won 12 out of 14 games in which a Fletcher has scored. Started with a 2-2 v Yeovil in 1960 when Doug Fletcher netted. Won all the others bar the 1-3 v Dartford in September, which was arguably Alex's best goal for us.
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Post by Peter Newman Sun Jan 23, 2022 8:49 pm

Am I the only one who is intrigued as to how Mark comes up with all these facts. Presumably he has some sort of Excel or Access type database.
Of course there is a small  possibility he is making it up as nobody else could challenge the posting.

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Post by Kevin Anderson Sun Jan 23, 2022 9:31 pm

Respectable reporters making things up? I have to stand in solidarity with my City counterpart here. We are bound by an unshakeable code of honour. #factsaresacred

I once reported an Eastbourne penalty (conceded) and misnamed the handball culprit. His Dad threatened to sue me and the paper. Well it was better than letting my tyres down on the car park.

Listen, I'll shut up now. See you lot in March.


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Post by stillmanjunior Sun Jan 23, 2022 9:48 pm

Peter Newman wrote:Am I the only one who is intrigued as to how Mark comes up with all these facts. Presumably he has some sort of Excel or Access type database.
Of course there is a small  possibility he is making it up as nobody else could challenge the posting.

I am happy to email over the database. It's on Excel. Started by Simon, I've gradually added more to it and over the lockdowns I've filled more in. Still needs a lot of TLC with past line-ups and such like. But I generally use things like filters to find these things out. Always helps when there's three of us on radio.

Speaking of match reports, in my rush to get everything done I failed to fully mention Fletcher's second goal in the NLP. Annoyed at myself.
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Post by Colin Voutt Sun Jan 23, 2022 10:33 pm

stillmanjunior wrote:I've got him down as eight league goals and two cup.

That is correct.

Who would choose to disagree with your stats?

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Post by Peter Newman Mon Jan 24, 2022 8:50 am

Thanks for the offer Mark but I echo Colin's comment and have complete faith in your stats.


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Post by stillmanjunior Mon Jan 24, 2022 9:41 am

That’s ok, honestly wasn’t offering as a ‘I’ll prove you lot wrong’ because I guarantee the thing isn’t 100% right, just happy to let others use the data rather than keep it to myself Smile
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