With Matt Banham injured, Adam Wright unavailable and Jonny Wynne away, Damo called up Alain Elsley Medina from the reserves and he was thrust straight into the starting line up in the changed formation of 4-4-1-1, which also saw Elliot Gibbs, recently signed from Mattishall, make his debut.
For the hosts, manager Chris Wigger was away so Ben Price assumed first team management duties in the dugout with Cedric Anselin playing. Sheringham also had ex-beavers Tom Hislop and Danny Lloyd in their starting eleven.
Blofield Utd: Ian Stones, Danny Mckail, Alain Elsley Medina, James Basey Fisher ©, Kris Hart, Jack Robinson, Dan Stobbart, Tom Wright, Elliot Gibbs, Isaac Mace, Robbie Fryers : Subs: Richard Brett, Will Bennett, Orren Oliver
Sheringham really should have scored within 30 seconds of the game starting. Medina was robbed on the edge of the area but fortunately Boyce stabbed the ball wide when he probably should have scored.
The Beavers responded and Lloyd had to be alert to smother the ball as Fryers threatened to burst through.
Boyce & Nelson’s early movement up front began to cause the Blofield defence some problems and the Sheringham number 9 forced a good save from Stones in the 10th minute.
Gibbs deep cross deceived Lloyd in the Sheringham goal and rebounded off the bar whilst at the other end Nelson teed up Boyce who could only put his shot wide.
Finally, in the 20th minute, Sheringham got the goal their play deserved. Hislop’s deep ball found Nelson who held off a couple of challenges to fire past Stones to put the hosts 1 up.
A minute later Boyce almost added to the lead, his shot forcing a great save from Stones who was now in danger of being over worked!!
However, the hosts failure to take their chances came back to haunt them as Blofield equalised 2 minutes later. A great ball inside the full back by Wright saw Robinson cross and a combination of Fryers and a Sheringham defender forced the ball past Lloyd to make it 1-1.
A few minutes later, more good work down the right, this time from Stobbart saw another Robinson cross well defended by Halliday. The ball broke for Sheringham and 30 seconds later, Nelson held off the challenge of Medina and slotted the ball into Blofield net for his and Sheringham’s second putting the hosts back in front 2-1.
The hosts then proceeded to dominate the rest of the half and scored a further 2 goals in 5 minutes.
Firstly, Boyce got the goal his performance merited, finishing another crisp Sheringham move. Then Nelson grabbed his hattrick, waltzing round four Blofield players before firing home to make it 4-1.
The Blofield defence looked all at sea and a fifth looked on the cards when Davies got behind the back four again. However, his cross failed to pick out a red shirt and the danger, for once, was cleared.
Things got decidedly worse for Blofield when, just before half time, Gibbs was shown a second yellow for a rash tackle. Having been harshly booked (in my opinion) some 15 minutes before for his first foul of the game, the referee seemed all too eager to waive the red in Elliot’s direction, for his latest indiscretion. This left the Beavers 4-1 and a man down at half time.
Damo response at half time was to remove Alain. Will Bennett took his place and went out to the left in a reshuffled 4-4-1 formation as the second half began.
Sheringham got their 5th ten minutes into second half. Great work by Crane saw his through ball collected by Boyce who nipped in ahead of Stone and rolled the ball into an empty net.
Fryers was replaced by Brett shortly after this but 10 minutes later, Sheringham grabbed their 6th. There seemed little danger when Hislop collected the ball some 30 yards out but he hit a cracking shot which Stones did ever so well to tip onto the bar. The ball was retained by Sheringham and Crane’s cross was then met by Boyce who headed past Stones to also claim his hattrick.
Oliver was then sent on for Mace as Damo switched to a 3-4-2 formation.
As if things could not get any worse for Blofield, Bennett went down under an innocuous looking challenge and was in need of treatment. It soon transpired that he was not able to continue, so the visitors now found themselves down to 9 men.
Bizarrely, this coincided with Blofield scoring the next two goals.
In the 73rd minute, the Sheringham keeper Lloyd, obviously feeling sorry for his old club’s plight, inexplicably passed the ball across his area directly to Oliver who gleefully returned said ball into the empty net.
A minute later and amazingly, the visitors scored again. The ball broke for Oliver in midfield and he stabbed it through to Robinson who rounded Lloyd and finished coolly to make it 6-3.
The action didn’t stop there though. In the 82nd minute, Sheringham earnt a penalty in bizarre fashion. Crane was making leeway down the right but seemed to run out of pitch. The Blofield defence stopped, awaiting the referee’s whistle which never came and in the ensuing melee, Boyce appeared to be upended by Stones leaving the Ref and his assistant rewarding the home side a penalty.
Blofield were incensed the goal kick was originally never given and this led to at least one if not two bookings for dissent.
To top everything off, had it not been for the fence behind the goal, the resultant penalty would have seen the ball sail off into the North Sea!!!!!
Final Score: Sheringham 6 Blofield Utd 3
The home side were well worthy of their victory and was a perfect 40th birthday present for their absent gaffer (sorry Chris !!). Special thanks to Ben, who helped us stretcher Will to the changing rooms, whilst the game was on-going. Sheringham look a formidable outfit at Division 1 level and I will not be surprised if we see them back in the Premier Division next season.
As for Blofield, it’s the first time I can remember the club, in my time here, being hit for six in successive games. It’s a big fortnight now for the first team as they look to get the season back on track. First up is Reepham at home this Saturday, followed by the first of this season’s local derby Acle, also at home.
Updated 21:38 - 25 Sep 2017 by Paul Warman