Scorers : Matt Sysum (penalty 86)

Date : Saturday 6th December 2014 - 3:00pm kick off - Evo-stik League Southern, South & West Division 1

Evesham United : Kevin Sawyer, Sean Wood, Will Wellon, Liam Harding, Matt Sysum, Linden Dovey, Elliot Kennedy (Lewis Binns 73), Nick Stanley, Ashley Edenborough (Lance Smith 73), Adam Mann, George Washbourne, Jared Wilson. Subs Not used: Joe Smith

Yellow Card :

Sholing: Rory Anderson, Kevin Brewster, Sam Olaofe, TJ Cuthbertson, Mike Byrne, Alex Sawyer, Barry Mason [c] (Jude Nwachukwu 76), Jack Smith, Dan Mason (Tobi Adekunle 61), Byron Mason, Nick Watts (Sam WIlson 76). Subs not used: Lewis Fear, Taurean Manders

Yellow Card :  Mike Byrne 85, Jack Smith 92

Attendance : 184

Man of the Match :  Mike Byrne

Referee :  Dumitru Ravel Chedsiava.  Assistants: Robert Parnham & Paul Wainman

Sholing lost out on a deserved point thanks to a bad refereeing decision that handed the home side a penalty with 4 minutes to go.  The ref said he saw the ball strike Mike Byrne's hand from close range, although the ball imprint on his chest said otherwise.

Team News: Sam Olafoe returned from injury to take the left back slot.  Dan Miller, Matt Brown & Marv McLean were still all absent through injuries.

The game kicked off in brilliant winter sunshine at Evesham's impressive new-ish ground situated on the edge of town. The Boatmen had the first decent effort on goal when Jack Smith connected well with a shot from the edge of the box, but it was straight down the keeper's throat.  The home side gradually wound up the pressure and forced three corners in quick succession, but each were dealt with comfortably by the Boatmen.

Bizarrely, the ref stopped the game on 20 minutes to ask Rory Anderson to remove his sock ties and Mike Byrne to remove his undershorts.  They may well have been different colours to our kit, but it was petty decision and something the officials should have checked before the game.  The stoppage irritated both home & away fans.  When the game got back underway, the bulk of the play was confined to the midfield area, with neither side getting on top.  A rare bit of space was found by Barry Mason out wide, his cross found Dan Mason, but his first time half volley went high, wide and not very handsome.  The home side was edging the possesion and came closest to opening the scoring when a cross-come-shot was deflected onto the top of the bar.   HT 0-0

Sholing showed better signs going forward in the first 10 minutes of the second half, but the only half chance to fall our way came when Dan Mason twisted & turned inside the area, but the ball got stuck under his feet, with brother Byron, in space, screaming for a pass that never came.

And so the game entered a long phase where both sides really cancelled each other out.  There was certainly no lack of effort from Sholing or the home side, but both were doing well in quickly closing down any space briefly found and both keepers were reduced to spectators.  The most Evesham could muster were a couple of crosses that flashed across the box that rasied some "oooohs" from the home fans, but didn't pose any threat to the Sholing goal.

The game looked like a classic stalemate, until the referee decided otherwise with 4 minutes to go.  A harmless looking shot struck Mike Byrne in the chest, there was a half-hearted appeal by the Evesham players for a penalty and to the shock of nearly everyone in the ground, the man in black pointed to the spot.  The Sholing players surrounded the ref, but they never change their mind.  Matt Sysum dispatched the Penalty to win the game for Evesham and leave the Boatmen players devastated & angry. FT 1-0

View from the Stand : This was far from a classic game of attacking football, with very few efforts on goal, but it was also full of commitment, with both sides cancelling each other out through hard work.  For Sholing, the whole team worked their socks off, putting in a text-book away performance of battling for a point.  I'm sure we wanted more, but with both defences on top and our forward line not causing Evesham many problems, it was soon clear the priority was not to lose.  So, with a point looking likely, it was a kick in the teeth to have it snatched away thanks to a very poor Refeering decision.  Yes, every team gets them, but we've certainly had a our fair share this season.  Hopefully, the rub of the green will improve for us from now on in.  The team is certainly playing well for each other, working hard and well organised.  We just need to up our game in front of goal to turn these close defeats & draws into more points.

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