Shrivenham 0-5 Didcot
Diddy make it back to back wins in pre-season with confident display
Didcot Town made it back to back convincing victories in pre-season with an eye catching display at Hellenic Premier League new boys Shrivenham last night thanks to 2 goals in the first half from Seth Humphries and Brett Gardner followed by 3 in the 2nd half from Felipe Barcelos, David Murphy and George Reid.
The Railwaymen arrived in SN6 with nigh on a full strength side to pick from, the only notable absentees were goalkeeper Leigh Bedwell who is on holiday and centre back Luke Carnell who is still nursing an injury to his leg following last week’s win at Abingdon Utd. This meant youngster Matt Crowther started in goal, Ryan Markham, Cameron McNeill Stuart Cattell and Adam Learoyd started in defense. Michael Alexis, Callum McNish and Seth Humphries playing in midfield with Felipe Barcelos in attack along with Ross MacDonald and Brett Gardner.
Didcot started the game brightly and took the lead in the 5th minute when Alexis played an excellent pass out to MacDonald in the wide right area and the young winger crossed to Seth Humphries who from 20 yards expertly curled the ball into the top corner to give the Railwaymen the perfect start. It was very nearly 2-0 shortly after when Alexis chanced his arm from range but his shot was deflected leaving the goalkeeper stranded but luckily for him the ball thudded into the cross bar and straight into his arms.
Matt Crowther then had to be alert at the other end as Shrivenham created their first real chance with a shot from distance but the goalkeeper did well low to his right turning the ball away before Didcot broke away and Barcelos found himself with space to find Gardner on the left hand side, the young winger struck towards goal but the effort was well saved, it fell to Barcelos but again the goalkeeper did well to save at the strikers feet before a bit of a scramble with the ball going wide.
Didcot extended their lead on 25minutes when a long ball by McNeill was missed in the Shrivenham backline allowing Gardner to pick it up and run into the box, he cut inside and shot low with his right foot and although the goalkeeper got a hand to it he couldn’t stop the ball finding the bottom corner.
Michael Alexis was standing out for Didcot with his range of passing in the central midfield area and it was he who was in the thick of the action next up as his pass found Barcelos in the box and the striker put in a perfect cross towards Gardner who struck the ball on the volley into the ground and onto the post with the keeper beaten. The ball stayed in play and went back to Alexis who then played another superb ball into MacDonald who fizzed a volley wide.
Half time. Shrivenham 0-2 Didcot
With a host of subs ready to come on it was slightly surprising that Didcot started the 2nd half with the same XI that started the game.
Felipe Barcelos was starting to cut a bit of a frustrated figure as the striker desperate for a goal of his own was denied again early on in the second half by another good save from the Shrivenham goalkeeper. He didn’t have to wait too much longer however when on 48 minutes the Didcot striker was sent clear again, this time he rounded the goalkeeper and slotted in with his left foot from a narrowing angle to make it 3-0.
The expected changes then started coming as McNeill, McNish, Humphries and Alexis were replaced by Thomas, Barder, Lance Williams and Matt Woodley.
Didcot were starting to strut their stuff at this point with some really slick passing and quick movement that the hosts were really struggling to deal with and Barcelos really should have added to his tally when he was sent clear again but his effort was brilliantly saved low to the keepers right. It was Barcelos last action of the night as he was replaced by David Murphy in attack.
It was Murphy who then added to the scoreline on the hour having not long been on as Shrivenham dallied in possession in defense, Brett Gardner stole in beating 2 players in the process he still had the composure to play the perfect cross to Murphy who was waiting to slot home the 4th goal of the evening.
More changes were then made as Markham, Gardner and MacDonald were replaced by Reid, Hayden and Morgan Williams.
The fifth goal arrived on 70 minutes when following a Shrivenham corner Didcot broke away at pace down the right hand side as Morgan Williams surged forward, he squared it to the onrushing George Reid and he tapped home from 6 yards.
Adam Learoyd nearly added to the score as he headed a Barder corner onto the cross bar and then Barder himself hit a post late on. Crowther had to be alert to save well with his legs at the other end to preserve his clean sheet as Didcot ran out comfortable winners with the whole squad having a very good and impressive run out.
We wish Shrivenham well on their new campaign in the Hellenic Premier Division and we now turn attentions to Saturday afternoon’s pre-season friendly at home to Southern Premier League side Redditch United. 3pm kick off
Saturday sees the end of our promotional £99 season ticket offer so get down to the Loop to secure your ticket for all of our home league fixtures at this bargain price!