City v Tiverton

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Tuesday 13th March 2001: Meadow Park  

  CITY vs. Tiverton Town  

Dr Martens League Western Division


City's Team

City made a very welcome return to floodlit football but ultimately lacked sufficient nous, strength and fortune to overcome a powerful Tiverton side.

City were again unchanged and had every reason to be confident after victories against Atherstone and Paget. The early exchanges were fast and furious with the referee letting some bruising challenges go with no more than a disapproving glance. Although Cox got an early opportunity to stretch his legs the only real chance fell to Tivvy but their forward scuffed his shot straight at Ally in the Gloucester goal.

City made the most of that let-off. Tucks sent over a deep free-kick and Baylo leapt to win the header. His touch did enough to wrong foot the Tivvy defence and Jenkins reacted quickest to score at the far post from close range. The goal seemed to genuinely stun Tiverton who spent the next twenty minutes reeling as City gleefully pushed forward.

Cox and Chenoweth were combining well to stretch Tivvy and one of these exchanges produced a corner from which City almost extended the lead. Baylo again beat his marker in the air to meet the high cross but saw his header brush just the wrong side of the crossbar. Tivvy also brushed the woodwork when Hines pushed the attacker just too wide to make his shot count, but City remained on top and soon Bayliss made amends for his miss. Another Cox charge ended with him being bundled over the byline, and the high cross again troubled the Tivvy defence. Their keeper lost the ball in flight and as the ball fell loose Bayliss had the simple task of nudging it over the line.

At two up and playing well City should have been in command of the game, but Tivvy had shown moments of better intent and most City fans weren't yet confident of the points. Their fears for the defence seemed over anxious when Hines and Abbott combined superbly to see off another Nancekivell run. However no defence in the world could have done much about the first goal for the visitors. Hunt headed a cross clear of the area, only to see Daly chest the ball and volley a swerving dipping shot onto the underside of the bar and into the net.

Past defensive uncertainties may have played on the minds of the City side during half-time, because any remaining composure seemed gone after the re-start. Almost from the whistle Tiverton attacked and Nancekivell, on loan back at Tivvy after his move to Plymouth, ghosted past a totally lost Grantley Dicks. The lack of any challenge left the attacker with time to pick out Ovens who was unmarked at the far post and scored the softest of equalisers. That early blow threatened to knock the stuffing out of City, and only profligate shooting by the Devon team prevented the game disappearing over the horizon.  

As always seems the way with City we were showing the signs of regaining our poise just when the hammer blow landed. Jenks and Chenoweth were putting themselves about to some effect, but then lost the ball in midfield. Tiverton hooked in the ball and City initially seemed to have survived after a block from Parnell. However no-one was prepared to take charge of the situation and the ball was played repeatedly across City's goal. Abbott and Dicks both had opportunities to hoist the ball clear, but after much ineffective leg swinging on both sides Everett got hold of it and smashed the ball into the net.

At long last City seemed to remember how well they'd played in the first half hour and at least managed to exchange attacks with Tivvy. In one early attack Chennas chased in one long ball to the byline only for the referee to infuriate the City fans by failing to see not only the initial stamp but also then not stopping the game for treatment as Chennas lay prone for an eternity.

The injustice did at least fire some enthusiasm from the T-End and roused the players to greater efforts. Billy Davis replaced Dicks who looked out of sorts and endured probably his worst game for us to date. Cox was the main threat for Gloucester and it was his shot that was charged down amid over-ambitious handball appeals. Cox then sent Jenks through, but his shot from the left was well stopped by the Tivvy keeper who also held on to further shots from Marshall and Bayliss.

City were continuing to ride their luck a little at the back, but were sustaining pressure on Tiverton. Unfortunately though our players weren't thinking on their feet enough, and long balls forward were easy fodder for the big commanding Tivvy centre-backs. Baylo's frustration was getting more evident and his protests ever more squeaky, but he did manage to get a flick to one ball to set up a last moment of controversy. Cox hared through and with only the keeper to beat was straightening up to shoot just when his legs were taken from him in spectacular fashion by the stretching lunge of Tatterton. Even the lumbering Tivvy defender seemed a little surprised when the ref didn't give the obvious spot-kick, but his surprise was nothing next to the righteous fury of the denied T-Enders.

With that the match fizzled to an end and we had another example of points chucked away. Gloucester can either moan about another poor decision from a referee, or more productively look at improving our defensive frailty. After all the ref probably made no more errors than anyone of our back line, and we can do more about them than the crackpot legions on the DML officials list.



Dicks (c)



City Scorers


Marshall 11th

(for 6; 90)
(for 3; 77)
(for 11;85)

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