Blue Square Conference South
Saturday 15 September 2007 - Milton Road - kick off 3.00pm
||Evans, Simpson, Rollo (c), Coupe (G Jones 45), Holland, Harris (S Jones 74), Hogg, Rogers, Edwards, Gilroy, McKeever (Keddle 45).
subs not used: Walsh, Davidge.
|man of the match:
||Harris (13), Edwards (53)
||S Feerick (Peterborough), N Smith (Bourne), D Appleby (Bourne)
|league position: 4th
||next match: Bognor Regis (A)
Report taken from
Cambridge may be best known as Britain's top academic city thanks to its university, but on Saturday it was its football team handing out the lessons.They offered a first-half display which culminated in a 20- minute spell where the Bath City defence was ruthlessly examined, with the Lilywhites awarding themselves a half-time 2:1 - in goals if not in degrees.
From the referee's whistle, on a warm and sunny East Anglian afternoon, both sides signalled their attacking intentions.
Cambridge forced a corner in the first minute and Darren Edwards, for City, offered a couple of early tests to the home defence.
However, the agony and the ecstasy of the first period belonged to City's Adie Harris.
The ecstasy came with City's first corner of the match when Harris stole in at the near post to score his first goal of the season.
Four minutes later he had evened things up.
After a mistake in midfield, Harris rushed back to atone for the error and only succeeded in turning the ball into his own net.
The visitors should have restored their lead within minutes.
Dave Gilroy took the ball to the byline, drawing Cambridge keeper Mark Davies towards him.
With Davies stranded, the ball was played back to Edwards, who, had he hit his shot first time, would have been firing at an empty net.
He hesitated and, when the ball eventually sailed towards goal, Davies managed to scramble back and turn the shot away.
It was to be the last City attack for some time as the home side stepped up a gear.
Cambridge poured forwards in numbers, increasingly exploiting gaps that opened up City's left flank.
The lively Ashley Fuller shot narrowly wide and two corners in quick succession induced some panic into the visitors' back-line.
Yet the goal, when it came, was not just down to defensive panic, but skill and composure from Michael Gash.
An inch-perfect pass found Gash, on the left, some 30 yards from goal.
He turned inside, moved past Jim Rollo, side-stepped the on-rushing Paul Evans and avoided a desperate Matt Coupe sliding in towards goal, ending the sublime move with a simple two-yard tap in.
Minutes later, the Lilywhites should have increased their lead.
Josh Simpson was left one-on-one with Evans, his attempted shot deflected at the last minute by the keeper's foot.
City could have found themselves three or four goals down, but were saved by the half-time whistle.
Following a team-talk and several tactical changes, it was a different side that came out after the interval.
Coupe and Mark McKeever were withdrawn from the fray to be replaced by Gethin Jones and Paul Keddle.
City then changed the formation to only three at the back, with Sekani Simpson pushed forwards to offer pace and penetration down the right.
Within eight minutes it had paid off.
Simpson picked up the ball just inside the Cambridge half and, after accelerating past one defender, he put in a cross to the heart of the Cambridge defence.
It was not just any cross - it was a Beckham-esque, rip-snorter of a ball, which, curling away from Davies, did enough to tempt the keeper off his line for Darren Edwards to steal in and powerfully head home.
If Simpson's cross was creative, the point gained from his and Edwards' efforts was more attributable to action at the other end of the pitch.
As Cambridge strove to restore their lead, it was the City keeper who was called in to action.
He made one comparatively easy, arm-stretching save from goalscorer Gash.
Then, with 20 minutes remaining, Fuller fired what looked to be a certain goal.
As the striker wheeled away in triumph, Evans stretched every sinew in his arm to tip the shot over the crossbar.
City cleared the resulting corner comfortably and the danger had passed.
With both sides having further half-chances, the result was anything but academic, but City survived to occupy fourth spot in the league.