FOLLOWING a good away performance by Crediton United against high flying Ivybridge in late November, to only lose by the odd goal in nine, the prospect of five fixtures against teams lingering at the bottom of the South West Peninsula League was giving some hope of climbing up the South West Premier Division East and avoid dropping into the relegation scramble.
After a frustrating 1-0 defeat against Bovey Tracey last Saturday’s (December 4) visit to Elburton was hoped to be a kick-start for a climb up the league.
Despite several games being rained off the Elburton pitch was surprisingly passed as playable.
Unfortunately our goalkeeping problems over the past month or so continue with the injured Mike Searle side-lined for several weeks.
We hope Mike is available in the near future. Alphington “loanee” Lee Waring, who has stepped in for a couple of games is returning to his home Club.
Team manager Matt Trenaman, who has many times in the past taken the position between the “sticks” in an emergency had to put on the gloves once again for the afternoon.
Some woeful collective defending, however, in §the first 20 minutes resulted in a quick 3-0 arrears and by half time this had increased to 6-0.
Ironically we actually had the better of the outfield play in the first-half and could quite easily have scored three or four goals ourselves but for some good saves by Elburton’s keeper.
Unfortunately, left-back Callum Vanstone, returning to the team following an operation, took a knock on the head and had to be replaced by Alex Montgomery and at half-time Richard Groom took the place of another injured player the team’s influential ball player Guy Allum, and Dillon Croft came on for Miles Norton.
Following some stern words at the half-time team-talk United looked a different side when they reappeared and dealt with the opposition’s attacking well.
Richard Groom’s energy made a difference in midfield and reserve team player Joe Chester proved he is quite capable of playing at first team level. Forwards Sam Stapleton, Leyton Cooper and Will Hamill and midfielder Dave Lee all created chances to reduce the score difference but Elburton’s keeper dealt with everything well.
Despite some very threatening clouds lingering over the Plymouth area during the match no rain fell, until we finally left the Club’s bar room.
It subsequently pelted down all the way home which probably would have made the pitch unplayable two hours earlier.
Today, Friday, December 10 we have a chance of making amends for our home defeat against Bovey Tracey, a fortnight ago, when we visited the Devon County F A Coach Road ground at Newton Abbott, where Bovey are playing at the moment, on the County’s Astroturf pitch due to drainage work on their own pitch.
We are currently balanced in a precarious position and urgently need some league points.
Considering we have beaten Western League team Ilfracombe, Southern League team Barnstaple and drawn with SWPL West team Bodmin Town in cup games this season then we should be in a decent position.
It is all down to getting our best team players together and all playing at the same time!
The team squad were: Trenaman, Norton, Vanstone, Chester, Egington, Goss, Callum, Lee, Cooper, Stapleton, Hamill.
Subs: Groom (for Callum), Montgomery (for Vanstone), Croft (for Norton), Heywood.