By Tom Bates
Southport Hesketh lose 3-1 away at Vickerstown
Yesterday Southport Hesketh made the long journey to barrow to face Vickerstown. Last season we were unbeaten by Vickerstown, winning 2-0 here with a scratch squad & also winning the fixture 3-2 at home. This time, Southport Hesketh had a strong squad to choose from, all be it with a couple missing who had played in our previous 2 home wins.
Liam Buckley returned in goal, with Kie Wright, Joe Tierney, Craig Massam & Jimmy Green in the back 4. Luke Smith, Brad Shearwood & Paul Garrett were the 3 in midfield, with Conor Wright, Jordan Gregg & Jordan Turner up top.
Max Sansum, Ste Cooke, Jesse Dowling & Joe Sturgeon were the subs.
The game started very sloppy which was part expected after such a long journey. Neither team could keep the ball for a decent spell, however Vickerstown looked most threatening. Southport gave the ball away far too often with Vickerstowns front man holding the ball up well to bring in his attacking midfielders into the game with couple of long range efforts that were palmed away by Buckley.
Jordan Gregg, Jordan Turner and Luke Smith all got in behind the town left back, but the end product & final Ball wasn’t met by anyone in the area. 20 minutes in, Southport Hesketh gave away a foul just outside the area (something which was always going to be a threat from Vickerstown due to their dead Ball threats) as Liam Buckley was lining up the wall, nobody was switched on enough other than the town number 9, who took a quick free kick into the empty net. Schoolboy defending really, but arguably a piece of genius from Vickerstown. Deflating to concede like that, Southport maybe needed that to kick them out of gear and start playing. Passes were strung together and Southport looked a little bit more like the team we know. Southport this time had a corner 5 minutes from half time, however Vickerstown defended it well and started a counter attack, end product being finished off again by the town number 9. A disappointing first half left Southport Hesketh with a mountain to climb.
Without hitting the panic buttons, Den & Tom asked for a the lads to play football and go and win the second half as we are more than capable of scoring 2 or more goals.
The second half started with intensity needed. 10 minutes in, Jesse Dowling was brought on for Jordan Turner who pulled his hamstring after looking very lively in previous appearances and today. Paul Garrett pushed upfront and Jesse was to keep the ball. A free kick inside our own half into the town area saw Luke Smith brought down in mid air, and the refree awarded a penalty. Conor Wright buried it to give southport a lease of life. The game seemed to have swung, southport were flowing stringing passes together and pressing hard all over to win the Ball back. A short back pass from the town right back saw Conor in on goal, however decided to take it first time to chip the keeper from 25 yards instead. The attempt going straight to the keeper. A chance wasted but southport kept pushing. Max Sansum then came on for Jordan Gregg and was involved straight away playing near and tidy quick passes to move Southport up the pitch. Vickerstown defended well though. Joe Sturgeon was the final change for Paul Garrett and Joe seen 2 long range efforts go over the bar. Brad Shearwood also seen a couple of efforts whistle past the post after some quick footwork on the edge of the area. With 5 left to play of the 90, Southport Hesketh were defending a run of 4 corners but didn’t actually clear their lines well enough. With Vickerstown having another corner, this one went straight in at the near post. Again, poor defending to put the game at 3-1 and that’s how it finished.
Management were not too happy about the first half performance which is what killed us. Again, mistakes, gifting teams goals which needs to be stopped. Nobody gives us them, we just seem to be very generous. A long way to go to come home with nothing. However, the games gone now, he result has happened. We move on to Bank Holiday Monday now, for what will be a scrappy game, a local derby vs Hesketh Bank. 3:00pm kick off
Scorer: Conor Wright
MOTM: Jimmy Green