Sholing 4-0 Highworth Town

Scorers : Marv McLean 42 & 55, Conor Whiteley 76, Sami Makhloufi 83

Date: Saturday 26th March 2022, 3pm – Southern League South Division 1

Venue:  Mackoy Stadium

Sholing: Ryan Gosney, Owen Roundell, Marv McLean, Charlie Wagstaffe, Dan Miller, Rob Nicholls, Ryan Cluett, Byron Mason ©, Dan Mason, Sami Makhloufi, Conor Whiteley (Dean Frampton 81).  Unused subs : Josh Batt, Lochlan Colquhoun, Jack Mann & Mackenzie Hare

Yellow Card: 

Highworth Town: Connor Johns ©, Oliver Case, Charlie Mccrae, Liam Haines, Joah Hall, Daniel Comer, Matt Cheetham, Sean Wood, Ashley Edenborough (Harry Ayres 61), Daniel Drewett, Mani Roper (Luke Jones 61).  Unused subs : Leon Morrison & Ross Adams

Yellow Card :

Referee:  Harry Scott  Assistants: Bruce Wayman & Robert Walczak

Attendance: 266

Man of the Match : Marv McLean

Marv McLean scored a brace on his 725th appearance for Sholing as the Boatmen cruised to a comfortable win.

Team News :  Byron Mason made a welcome return from injury and went into a back 3 with Miller & Roundell.  Cluett & Marv were pushed up into more attacking positions and Charlie Wagstaffe made his first start since early October.  Was a very young Sholing bench, averaging 18 years of age.

Was a lovely sunny & warm day, with the pitch now pretty hard after the recent spell of dry weather.  That was demonstrated inside 3 mins when the ball bounced high in the Highworth 6 yard box, evading Dan Mason & the goalkeeper at first, Dan did eventually make contact, but his effort was cleared off the line.   The game then went a bit flat, with both sides unable to retain possession, until on 23 mins, Dan Mason's snap shot from the edge of the box pinged back off the upright.

Dan Miller strode out of defence and slid the ball to Marv on the overlap, who cut inside, but his shot was blocked.  Highworth weren't putting much together in the final third, but had two shots inside a minute, both clearing the ball-stop net and the clubhouse.  Stalemate at half time looked on the cards until on 42 minutes, Sholing finally clicked around the box, scoring a well worked goal.  Dan Mason held the ball up, before involving Cluett & Roundell, who passed to Conor Whiteley, who spotted the run of Ryan Cluett into the box, sliding the ball into his path and Cluett put across a perfect pass for the arriving MARV MCLEAN to make no mistake from inside the 6 yard box.   HT 1-0

Second half saw much more goal mouth action and all from Sholing as we dominated proceedings.  Conor Whiteley hit a sweetly struck shot from just outside the area that went narrowly wide.  Then after a good move, Sami put his shot over the bar.    Boatmen got our deserved second goal on 54 mins as MARV MCLEAN was released by Whiteley to advance down the left and his cross into the middle seemed set for Dan Mason, who put the goalie off as the ball evaded both and nestled just inside the far post.

Dan deserved a goal for himself, but he was again denied by the woodwork when his fierce shot clipped the post.   The other Dan (Miller) almost got a rare goal when from Cluett's corner, he did well to hook the ball from behind him goalwards, but the keeper tipped the ball over with a fantastic save.  Highworth looked a beaten side and offered little in resistance as Sholing went looking for more goals.  Charlie Wagstaffe broke into the box and squared for Conor, but his shot from 12 yards went over.

On 76 mins, we had our third when Sami Makhloufi showed terrific control & quick feet to beat two players inside the box and find CONOR WHITELEY to knock the ball over the line for his 10th goal of the season.  The visitors were already asking the referee how much longer there was to play as D-Dan had a shot parried as far as Ryan Cluett, whose follow up was cleared off the line.   

Dean Frampton came on for Conor and with his first taste of the action, set up our fourth goal.  Dean was released down the right wing and he calmly picked out SAMI MAKHLOUFI in the area, who took a touch to open up space before firing back across the keeper who got something on it, but couldn't stop the ball finding the net. A much needed win for the Boatmen after a frustrating month of results.  FT 4-0

Wonderful for Marv to get two goals on his 725th appearance.  Could you imagine the media frenzy if a Premier League player made that many appearances for one team?!   He thoroughly deserves the plaudits and our thanks for what he's done for this club.

Next Game : Paulton Rovers v Sholing - Southern League - Wednesday 30 March 7:30pm

Photos courtesy of EspieJaz (swipe to view pics)