Blue Square Conference South
Saturday 25 October 2008 - Clarence Park - kick off 3.00pm
||P Evans, G Jones, Rollo (c), Coupe, Holland, Connolly, Simpson (Paul 84), Badman, Gilroy, Douglas (Edwards 66), Hogg.
subs not used: S Jones, Gosling, Rogers.
|man of the match:
||Hogg (75), Badman (85), Coupe (86)
||C Francis, A Crawdord, G Wilson
|league position: 11th
||next match: Newport (SS) (H)
Report taken from
With the two sides going into this match only three points apart in the Blue Square Suth table and with each having both scored and conceded five goals in their last six games, something had to give.
In the end it was St Albans who continued their winning run, making it five victories on the trot as Bath City suffered their first defeat
under new manager Adie Britton.
The game started with both sides looking keen to attack. In the opening minutes, St Albans could have opened the scoring when a cross by Gary Cohen came to Simon Martin, who headed into Paul Evans' hands.
However, just a minute later it was action at the other end as a cross from Lewis Hogg found Dave Gilroy, who tamely shot into keeper Paul Bastockís hands.
From then on it was action at both ends. James Fisher failed to test Evans with a long-range shot in the fifth minute, then just seconds later a good move starting with Martin saw the ball pushed onto Cohen and back to Martin, with Evans just intercepting to take the ball off the home player's feet.
City then went ahead on 13 minutes from a stroke of good fortune.
Sekani Simpson put in what was clearly intended to be a far-post cross, but, with the ball evading Bastock, the vocal City fans behind the goal were delighted to see it just creep into the goal between upright and crossbar.
From then on there were chances at either end as these evenly balanced teams struggled for supremacy.
Stuart Douglas missed a couple of very good opportunities, the best just after Simpson had scored, when he got the better of Ryan Frater and shot wide with the goal at his mercy.
St Albans also had chances. Fisher shot into Evans' arms on 20 minutes befre a good free-kick from Jonathan Hunt sailed between the keeper and his
defence without a Saints forward able to get a foot to it.
However, the home side's best opportunity again came when Martin raced on to a through ball and attempted to lob Evans. He didnít quite judge the City keeper's height correctly and, stretching, Evans did enough to get his fingertips to the ball and turn it away from goal.
The second half started much as the first ended, with both sides having half chances, and just after the hour mark the Saints equalised.
After City had been on the attack, Jim Rollo was drawn out of position and, with Gethin Jones racing to cover, the ball was played past him for Hunt to cross and Martin to head home.
It visibly deflated the visitors and, with Hogg looking to be nursing an injury after a knock early in the half, the pace and invention present in the first period began to go missing.
Despite this, a draw still looked the most likely result, with neither keeper seeing much action. That is until nine minutes from time.
The lively Cohen, who had moved out of the centre to the right wing when St Albans had made two substitutions early in the second half, got round Rollo before crossing from the byline.
From amongst a melee of players one of those substitutes, Paul Hakim, got to the ball first to head home from close range.
There was still time for City to mount further attacks and to receive three bookings as frustrations began to show. In the end the visitors' best chance came seconds before the final whistle.
With the ball bouncing around the home defence from a City throw in, it was flicked on to Gilroy, whose diving header was well taken by Bastock.
Had it gone in it would have been a just result in an even game. Instead City were left were left to lick their wounds and regroup before Tuesday's Setanta Shield home tie against local rivals Newport County.