Blue Square Conference South
Saturday 18 October 2008 - Twerton Park - kick off 3.00pm
||P Evans, G Jones, Rollo, Coupe, Holland, Connolly, Simpson, Hogg, Douglas (Edwards 88), Gilory (Paul 68), Slocombe.
subs not used: Rogers, Gosling, Badman.
|man of the match:
||N Field (West Haddon), D Moran (Tidworth), C Wade (Bournemouth)
|league position: 11th
||next match: Street (SPC) (A)
Report taken from
Bath City goalscoring hero Martin Paul came off the bench to get the Adie Britton era off to a winning start.
Paul's 73rd minute header - his 115th goal for the club - deservedly gave City a first home win of the season in Britton's first game as manager.
The new boss made four changes to the team which lost to Aylesbury in the cup, with Matt Coupe and Stuart Douglas replacing the transfer-listed Paul
Cochlin and departed Danny Carey-Bertram respectively.
Gethin Jones came in at right back, with Sekani Simpson moving to midfield, and Martin Slocombe started on the left in place of Jamie Gosling,
who dropped to the bench. New signing Richard Evans was unavailable as the club await international clearance following his move from Newport County.
Britton was given a warm welcome before the game by the City supporters and saw his team immediately go on the attack, earning their first corner inside the opening minute.
The game was fairly scrappy after that as the teams took time to settle down but there was a glimmer of an opening for City in the ninth minute when Slocombe caught Andy Sambrook in possession but put his cross too close to Fisher keeper Simon Overland.
The giant goalie had to make his first save of note a minute later when Adam Connolly fired in a low shot from 25 yards.
City were looking the better team and had a great chance to take the lead in the 19th minute when a neat passage of play saw Douglas lay the ball off to Jim Rollo, whose deep cross found Simpson at the back post. He volleyed back across goal but the ball was scrambled clear as Dave Gilroy closed in.
The pressure continued to grow on the away side as City began to dominate possession and defender Paul Cunningham found himself in the book in the 27th minute after hacking down Douglas on the edge of the box. Unfortunately Slocombe's tame free kick went straight into the keeper's hands.
Slocombe wasted another chance to put in a dangerous ball from virtually the same position seven minutes later after Jones had been clipped by Jordan Kiffin.
Indeed, City's final ball was a disappointment throughout the first half and frustration began to grow as promising possession continually came to nothing.
And it was Fisher who had the better of the closing stages of the half, Coupe having to produce a strong clearing header from one teasing cross and keeper Paul Evans relieved to hear the referee's whistle after only palming away a Kiffin corner under pressure.
City made a positive start to the second half and Fisher defender Cunningham did well to head Simpson's dangerous cross over the bar from inside the six-yard box. The corner again came to nothing.
There was a decent delivery a couple of minutes later, though, when Jones put in a deep cross which dropped invitingly at the far post for the onrushing Slocombe, whose effort went just millimetres wide.
The best chance of the game arrived in the 58th minute when Lewis Hogg's low free kick was deflected goalwards by Douglas but Cunningham - more by luck than judgement - somehow lifted the ball over the bar from inside the six-yard box.
The Fisher defender was the centre of attention again three minutes later, going down under a strong challenge which earned Douglas a rather harsh booking.
As the game became more disjointed, not helped by referee Nigel Field's constant whistling, Britton tried to freshen things up by sending Paul on for Gilroy in the 68th minute.
And it took the veteran striker just five minutes to break the deadlock, heading emphatically into the roof of the net after being picked out at the back post by Jones' peach of a cross.
Jones was pushed forward after that and almost doubled the lead in the 85th minute when keeper Overland palmed Slocombe's cross into his path but the volley from a tight angle hit the side netting.
Fisher had looked a poor team and their afternoon ended on a suitably low note when Cunningham picked up his second yellow card following a foul on Coupe.
Substitute Darren Edwards went close to adding to their misery in injury time with a fine header from Paul's cross, which forced a save from Overland.
But one goal proved to be enough and the City players were given a great ovation as they left the pitch by the Twerton Park faithful.