Romsey 3 4-0 Salisbury 4

This Saturday afternoon was approached by Romsey with a mixture of hope and trepidation. Whilst Romsey, the away side, were confident in their ability and form, the last time they had played away at Salisbury in the league they had slumped to a scoreless draw. Romsey currently sat top of the league, although both Fareham and Bournemouth had a game in hand, with the home team occupying 5th place. Romsey brought a strong team to the game, with one change made from the 16 man squad that romped to an 8-0 victory over Gosport as striker Richard Lake made his season’s début.

In typical fashion the third XI started strong, breaking down the Salisbury defence but golden opportunities were squandered by strikers Zak Cooper, Ben Ellis and winger Alex Halcoussis. Striving for the opener, Romsey found their play narrowed and it was not until Olly Robley drove the ball wide before passing into the D to find Lake, who struck the ball on his reverse through the keeper’s legs and into the middle of the goal. The two attackers combined again shortly after as Robley dribbled down the base line to square and set up a sweaty goal that Lake could not miss. Romsey’s third of the afternoon came as James Robinson chipped in the rebound from a shot by striker Cooper into the roof of the net on the right hand side of the goal, underling a dominant first half.

Having established a secure footing for the second half, the Third XI were surprisingly nervous throughout, especially when defending within their own D. However a commendable performance from the back line, in particular left-back Hugh Davidson, and strong play from the central midfield of Danny Nicoll, Pete Cooper and Jon Marsh, helped ensure Romsey kept a clean sheet. A fourth goal for the visiting team calmed the game down as Richard Lake finished off a brilliant passing move involving captain Matt Clark and most of Romsey’s forward minded players. A 5th could have been added as Halcoussis intercepted a sloppy ball out from the back by Salisbury but the keeper dived to block the through ball to striker Lincoln.

Although they never truly hit their stride, winning is a good habit and Romsey will be pleased to carry on their form.

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