Brize Norton 3-1 Middle Barton
Solid performance gets Brize back to winning ways
With Brize Norton unlucky to lose last week they were looking to make amends this week and try and secure their first home victory of the season. For the visit of Middle Barton Rob Hook named this line-up:
Abbott, Stoddart, Humm, Morrison
White, Rooney, Hook, Parlsoe, Puddle
Puddle, Morgan and Rooney were back in the team after a week away, Bradley had to make do with a place on the bench. Harris was due to be in the starting XI but due to his reoccurring late arrival he had to take his place on the bench which meant Jon White was reinstated to the starting XI, which some might say was a blessing in disguise. Manager Hook forgot to bring the armband out from the changing room so Rooney was quick to pounce and take on the mantel of being captain much to his pleasure and everyone else's amusement.
Before kick off both teams held an immaculate minutes silence and paid their respects to the late Patrick O'Flanagan who sadly lost his life during the week, Patrick was a tremendous servant to Kingham FC and to Witney and district football.
The first half passed pretty quickly with the majority of the game being played in the middle of the park, both defences preforming admirably and giving both forward lines nothing. There was an early scare for Brize as they quickly realised that Middle Barton's big striker wasn't just a physical presence, he was also very, very quick as Stoddart found out all to quickly.
Abbott at right back was having a good game, a few mazy runs, he was finding Gezz for fun but Gezz kept finding himself offside. Brize almost found themselves in front after the Barton keeper completely misjudged the flight of Humm's cross and the ball almost sneaked in off the crossbar. Puddle also had a golden opportunity to run in on the goal and with a chance of putting Brize ahead but he instead handballed it and chance was gone.
Brize were looking as solid as they have been all season, with each player giving nothing less than 100%, much to the annoyance of Barton who were getting frustrated and arguing with one another. Rooney had the first opportunity of the 2nd half after Jon White whipped in a lovely free-kick, Rooney beat his marker all he had to do was make a good connection and it would of found the back of the net, probably harder to miss than score.
Puddle, who was having a good game on the left wing, got unfortunately injured and so it was time for Adam Harris to enter the field. After playing up front for last 2 games he was now playing in his favoured position on the left flank. Minutes after entering, Harris was taking advantage of the width of the pitch, he ran down left wing and whipped a great cross in and found an on running Jon White who took one touch on the edge of the box and smashed it off the underside of the bar. 1-0 and an early 'goal of the season' contender.
It was soon to be 2-0 after Gezz neatly found Matt Parsloe in the box who had time, he went to curl the ball into the top right corner but miss hit it (he says he meant too) into the bottom left and past the keeper. That was pretty much his last touch of the game as shortly after he made way for Bradley.
The 2 goal lead didn't last for too long, Marshall, Abbott, Humm, Stoddart and Muzzle were all having a storming game, everything coming their way was being dealt with until one moment, where they switched off just for a second, a through ball found their striker who somehow had no one near him, some said he was offside, all he had to do was beat Marshall to which he did. 2-1
Barton were now applying lots of pressure, and going gung-ho for the equalizer, but this suited Brize as we could catch them on the break to which we did, Jon White found Gezz Morgan in the centre of the goal... a simple little cushioned side foot pass from Gezz and it would of found the back of the net, but no... he leant right back and smashed over from 5 yards. That would of eased the pressure somewhat and give us our 2 goal lead back but that was soon to come as into stoppage time and Gezz made amends for his miss and played a good through ball into Rob Hook who dropped his shoulder and calmly stroked the ball past the keeper. 3-1 Brize.
Some great football on show and some fantastic spirit. Just shows if every player gives 100% anything is possible. Brize Norton's first win at home this season and hopefully many more to come.
That's it for league games for a while, concentration now switches to continuing the cup run...