Saltford 0-1 Minehead

MINEHEAD started the game well, and two corners nearly brought rewards in the first five minutes, writes Brian Walder.

From Guy Burns’ flag-kick Rob Vickers, this week playing a much elevated strikers’ role, saw his volley at the far post well saved by home keeper Sam Murphy.

Moments later it was Murphy who again prevented Vickers from opening the scoring, tipping his goal-bound effort over the bar.

Burns went close himself when his in-swinging corner beat the keeper but struck the crossbar.

Minehead continued to look the brightest with their strikers looking quicker than their opponents and a well-executed move saw Vickers race down the line outpacing two defenders and his perfect deep cross found Olly Prescott who scored from close range putting The Blues in front.

Saltford responded but found Minehead’s reshuffled defence tough to crack, where teenage left back Charlie Disney was making his first team debut and whose confidence grew noticeably throughout the ninety minutes. Home full back Harry Brimble missed a golden opportunity to get his side back on terms when he headed high over the bar when well placed at the far post.

Another cross shot from Vickers was then blocked and towards the end of the first half Burns was close to converting a central opportunity after another slick defence splitting move along the right flank, with Stefan Phillips’ influence on the game being instrumental.

During a second half that saw the hosts increase their attempts to force an equaliser as the game grew older, but Minehead hit the woodwork on two more occasions with Rob Vickers hitting the bar with a left footed shot after taking on and beating the last defender, and new signing Artur Jacaszek, who added a different dimension to the forward line as a substitute for the final quarter of the game, hit the foot of the post and with the ball cannoning back along the goal line it then hit Kamil Wilk on the shin and was finally cleared.

Saltford’s frustration saw them receive several yellows plus a sin bin penalty period. The pressure grew on the Minehead goal in the closing stages but with Kyran Wilkins safeguarding his goal well, Minehead held out for a welcome, and deserved away win.

Minehead: Kyran Wilkins, Bertie Harvey-Larmar, Charlie Disney, Ryan Wilkins, Mike Graddon, Stefan Phillips, Kamil Wilk, Hubi Wejnerowski, Guy Burns, Rob Vickers, Ollie Prescott
Subs: Matty Ronan, Dan Vickers, Artur Jacaszek (All Used)

Man of the Match: Charlie Disney

Minehead return to The Rec for the next two Saturdays, firstly facing Winscombe this Saturday (1st April) then hot on their heels Ashton & Backwell Reserves make the journey to West Somerset on Easter Saturday to “replay” an August match that was brought to an end seven minutes early by the referee due to a serious injury to Minehead’s Tiago Alipio. Minehead, who were winning at the time, were initially awarded the points but a subsequent appeal resulted in the game needing to be re-staged.

Both matches kick off at 3pm.