Beer Albion win well at Chagford

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2609. Picture: Terr

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2609. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

After being surprisingly defeated by Chagford at the Furzebrake earlier in the season, Beer Albion took their revenge, winning 2-0 in an entertaining Macron Premier contest at the War Memorial Playing Fields on Saturday, writes RIchard Honnor.

The Fishermen were made to work hard for the victory by the Dartmoor outfit who played some fine football going forward but their finishing lacked quality and their back line always looked vulnerable under pressure from Beer's lively forwards.

On a beautiful, large playing surface, Beer dominated the first 30 minutes, pressing high and playing some fine football.

But the Fishermen failed to capitalise due to missed chances and some desperate Chagford defending.

Striker Chris Long went closest to scoring, first on 14 minutes when the Chagford keeper denied him after good work from Taylor Rooke had created the opportunity. Long then executed a fine finish after Charley Skilton's through-ball had split the Chagford defence, but the big striker was ruled narrowly offside.

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The young Beer side began to show their frustration at failing to capitalise on their early superiority and Chagford began to catch them on the break and might well have scored themselves on a couple of occasions, but for poor finishing.

After the break a clearly re-focused Beer only had to wait five minutes before making the breakthrough.

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A fierce Jay Catley effort from 20-yards was partially blocked, but the ball spun high in the air into the penalty area causing confusion in the Chagford defence. Beer's Josh Lund, who had an outstanding game, was quick to spot an opportunity and he nodded home from close range.

The Fishermen were back in charge and only a spectacular flying save by the Chagford keeper denied Chris Long's well-placed 20-yarder on 52 minutes after great work by the selfless Taylor Rooke. The keeper again came to his side's rescue two minutes later denying Jay Catley who had been put in the clear by another incisive Skilton through ball.

But Chagford dug in and Beer keeper Elliot Driver made a good save at full stretch on 60 minutes to deny the plucky home side an equaliser.

On 70 minutes, the Fishermen took a two-goal lead when Charley Skilton struck cleanly from 18 yards into the top corner after a deft lay-off from Max Richardson. It was Richardson's first touch after coming on as substitute!

The home side never gave up and were unlucky when a shot across goal from the left hit the base of the post with Driver well beaten.

The Fishermen were almost denied a clean sheet when in the dying minutes when Chagford were awarded a penalty for a foul.

The Beer players and officials protested vigorously that the offence was well outside the penalty box, but the referee stuck to his guns. Keeper Driver made a wonderful save to push the well-struck penalty around the post.

This Saturday (February 1), the Fishermen are back in action at the Furzebrake against local rivals Colyton in a Premier Division contest. Kick-off at the Furzebrake is at 2.15 pm and match sponsor is PR Driver Ornamental Work.

Beer Albion 2nd's moved up to second place in Division Two after a 2-0 home win against Heavitree 2nd's. They are away at Tedburn St Mary this Saturday.

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