Sunday 23rd December 2012
By Gary Rosslee
Wellcome reverse the result from earlier in the season
So with the end of the world (as some predicted) failing to live to all the hype Farnborough’s last match before Christmas would be away to Wellcome Vets in Beckenham and who else could predict with the management duo of Danny Saines and Paul Tanton both unavailable for today’s fixture that the responsibility / burden would be bestowed onto Gary Rosslee, current captain, journalist, team clown and heart throb (not sure about the last one).
Now having had their Christmas present the week earlier courtesy of Santos Vets, Farnborough were under no illusions that they would be in for a much sterner test today. It only seems like yesterday when Farnborough were very fortunate to steal a 5-4 victory from right under Wellcome\'s noses when they last met at the end of September at Farrow fields.
With the weather being as bad as it was prior to Sunday many of us would have suspected the game would have been called off however our ex ‘Buff’ contingent of players informed us that the pitch at Foxgrove Road has an excellent drainage system and I must doff my cap to the ground staff down there who keep the pitch in an excellent condition and the playing conditions today were perfect for a football match. The surface was smooth and flat and the pitch is a decent length albeit the pitch could be 10 yards or so a bit wider, if our home ground is affectionately named ‘Farrow Fields’ maybe they could apply for permission from the council to call it ‘Narrow Fields’.
With some last minute changes in personnel due to “Christmas Lurgy” Farnborough lined up as follows:
GK, Gary Rosslee
LB, Neil Connelly
CB, Andy Cobham
CB, Rowan Foggitt
RB, Paul Bailey
LM, Daragh Nott
CM, Brett Cheesman
CM, Jim St John
RM, Ben Clunn
CF, Barry Grainger
CF, Simon Davies
Its is safe to say that Wellcome are probably one of the most improved teams that we have played over the years as they have clearly bolstered their squad with some decent footballers for this campaign and it didn’t take too long for Wellcome to take the lead. The ball was given away by Ben Clunn on the halfway line and Wellcome attacked in numbers and eventually the Wellcome forward was able to swivel in the box and his effort took a slight deflection off Andy Cobham which saw the ball squirm under Rosslee, 1-0 Wellcome. Heads dropped and players started arguing with each other which in a way shows that people actually care and when that negative emotion was turned into positive Farnborough grabbed an equaliser. Brett Cheesman’s excellent weighted through ball was latched onto by Daragh Nott who neatly rounded the goalkeeper to finish into the empty net, 1-1.
Again Farnborough lost concentration and conceded another sloppy goal, a free kick was conceded some 40 yards out on the right hand side and the ball was floated into the penalty area and the Wellcome number 6 rose unchallenged and nodded home to restore the lead for the home side, 2-1. Thankfully Barry Grainger and Rowan Foggitt combined well to score Farnborough’s second equaliser of the match. Rowan started the play on the edge of the Farnborough penalty area as he laid the ball off to Ben and continued his run, Ben found Barry Grainger who beat one man and then skilfully nutmegged the last defender before squaring the ball for Rowan who had run some 70 yards to finish emphatically, 2-2 half time.
The introduction of Dean Wyatt for Brett Cheesman in the middle of midfield was the only change at half time as Farnborough took to the pitch in high spirits having scored 2 excellent goals, they had also had the better of the chances without drawing a real save from the Wellcome goal keeper. Jim St John in the centre of midfield had also been immense winning every header and putting himself about a real box to box performance.
Alas Farnborough came out of the traps the slowest after the restart and Wellcome took the lead for the third time in the match with one of the flukiest goals yours truly has ever seen. The ball was played through on goal and Rowan Foggitt used his pace to overtake the centre forward (who was no slouch himself) and as he went to make a last ditch tackle and clear the ball to safety the ball ricocheted off of the forward\'s running foot and fizzed past Rosslee to make the score 3-2 Wellcome! Wellcome\'s fourth goal had an element of good fortune as well as they had 2 men offside but the referee did not have any of it. Farnborough stepped up to play the offside trap and normally the decision would have been given but today it wasn’t and it allowed their number 8 who resembled James Arthur (X factor winner for anybody aged over 40) to coolly finish unmarked. This was the same player who lunged in on Rosslee in the first half, had this been a league game maybe he would not have even stayed on the pitch however this wasn’t and he scored, 4-2 Wellcome!
Farnborough pressed forward and soon pegged a goal back, Barry Grainger smartly squaring the ball for Jim St John to smash home and give the OBG’s some hope of getting something from this match after all, 4-3 Wellcome. Some further sloppy play from Farnborough allowed Wellcome to score a fifth goal as 2 of their men were completely unmarked when they took a throw in by the corner flag, the first player received the ball and had time to find the centre forward who finished well from 6 yards out as Rosslee’s near post that he was unable to keep out, 5-3 Wellcome.
Farnborough then missed a few chances to reduce the deficit, Jim St John saw two efforts spurned the first coming from a header which went just over the bar and the second was another header that hit the post and Andy Cobham skied the rebound, Dean Wyatt also had header hit the bar from a few yards out to further add to Farnborough’s frustrations! With time running out Farnborough switched to 3 at the back and pushed Rowan Foggitt further up playing almost as a second striker, and this tactic would soon pay dividends as Barry Grainger did excellently to evade two defenders and lay the ball into the path of Rowan who scored his second of the match with a precise curling effort that the keeper dived in vain for, 5-4, Wellcome.
Unfortunately time ran out for the OBG’s as they went down 5-4 losers a reverse of the result back in September in Farnborough. Wellcome laid on some good grub for us after the match as we were left to rue the chances we had missed today. Funniest moment of the match had to be when Dean Wyatt checked the Wellcome skipper who fell into a huge puddle off of the pitch which left him soaked through to the bone! A big thank you to Cheesman and Bodge for assisting me today in my interim role and Barry Grainger for taking the kit back to the club along with the sub money, a nice £117 ;).
Next week we are at home to Cudham where local pride is at stake and no doubt we will all be that little bit heavier!
Shot of the match: Rowan Foggitt’s second goal
Save of the match: None – not one save was made by either keeper to my recollection!
Man of the match: Jim St John for a Jumbo performance
Moan of the match: 4 of the goals we conceded today could have easily been avoided!
Man of the match: Jim St John