Warminster’s first away league match of the season was to Devizes on a very ball-stopping windy day. Due to the Devizes’ home kit being red & white the new Warminster white & red away kit couldn’t be worn; therefore, the team played in blue. The new kit will have to wait a little longer before being displayed on the pitch.
The wind certainly made things difficult for both sides, holding up the ball in the air. In the first half, Warminster played against the wind, making high balls tricky. The game was very entertaining and a credit to Western League football with both teams working hard for a win. The result was a very satisfying victory for Warminster Town coming out 1 – 3 winners.
Devizes threatened Warminster’s goal in under 2 minutes with a long-range shot helped by the wind forcing Crabtree to produce a good save. Both sides continued to create opportunities to score including Charlie Walton for Warminster who fired a long-range shot over the home side’s crossbar.
The breakthrough came in the 22nd minute. James Vincent battled in the left-hand side of the penalty area to beat the keeper at his feet. He then crossed the ball, which was met by the head of Jack Miluk to score the opening goal. Around 4 minutes later Vincent ran at the keeper and fired a powerful shot which brought a very good save from the Devizes man.
Crabtree also had to produce a mixture of good and relatively easy saves from the Devizes attackers. The best save had to be by the home side’s keeper when a good ball from Lewis Graham on the right found Harry Barnes playing as a winger on the left. Barnes crossed the ball across the goal and found the hard-working Vincent who sent a powerful shot towards goal forcing the keeper to produce a fantastic save.
The first-half equaliser came for Devizes when a mix-up at the back allowed their number 10, Jack Hopper, to tap the ball home at the back post. The teams went into the dressing room all level at halftime in what had been an exciting 45 minutes of football.
The second-half would also prove to be a good advertisement for Western League football as both sides continued to press and create chances to score. Warminster’s Barnes forced a good save in the 59th minutes when the keeper managed to get a leg to prevent a goal from getting in close to his right-hand post. The rebounding ball was followed up by James Vincent who poked it just wide.
Another opportunity for the visitors missed when Vincent’s ball across the goal wasn’t seized on by Miluk or Johnson in the penalty area as it flashed across them. Andy Crabtree brought on substitute Francois Allen who used to play for Warminster a few seasons ago and is now back with the team. After excellent work from Henry McFerran, the ball got through to Allen who on his new season debut put the ball nicely into the back of the net.
Warminster didn’t sit back and rest on their lead and a long ball found Allen on the edge of the penalty area. He lobbed the onrushing keeper, and the ball went just wide of the goal.
In additional time Walton found himself on his own in the centre circle and picked up a pass ran down the centre of the pitch with a defender and goalie to beat. Walton shot low and found the back of the net, making it a very satisfying day for the visitors and taking three well-earned points.
The next game is on Saturday, August 17th when the new team to the Western League, Lebeq Utd come to Weymouth Street, kickoff 3.00pm.
Team: Crabtree, Barnes, McFerran, Graham, De-Silva, Churchyard, Miluk, Walton(c), Johnson, Vincent, Baggs R.
Substitutes (used*): Lisowski*, Allen*, Baggs K, Shanley* Ball