Following a morning pitch inspection at The Grove, United played Odd Down Reserves on Saturday. The ground was obviously heavy but playable before a good size crowd.
Nailsea had the better of the early exchanges with Sam Olsen having a goal bound shot charged down on five minutes. The visitors then began to exert some pressure with a shot to high on ten minutes followed by a similar attempt from a corner two minutes later.
The game ebbed and flowed with Sam Olsen firing wide on 17 minutes. Five minutes later Rob Brown brought the ball out of defence to find Ben Pratt who picked out Sam Olsen but once again he could find the target. The next chance fell to Luke Pemberthy who latched on to a Rob Brown free kick but the resultant strike was sent just wide of the far post.
Odd Down then came closest to opening the scoring on 35 minutes when following a corner it required a goal line clearance by a United defender to keep the ball out. Two minutes later a cross field move saw the ball at the feet of Ross Probert but his shot was well saved by the impressive Odd Down keeper. As the end of the first half loomed it was Nailsea that had the best chances with efforts by Penberthy having been fed by Ben Pratt ending in a weak shot before in the next raid Penberthy found Adam Marsden who beat his marker to create space but his shot was just the wrong side of the post.
In the final minutes the best chance came when a Joe Sharps shot was only parried by the keeper to Adam Marsden but an Odd Down defender somehow deflected the shot wide.
Half Time. Nailsea United 0 Odd Down Reserves 0
Credit must be given to both sides who provided a very watchable game of football in difficult conditions. The Odd Down keeper had kept his side in the game and only time would tell if the home sides missed chances would be costly after 90 minutes.
The first action of the second half saw Luke Pemberthy making a strong run down the right before crossing to find Sam Olsen but once again the visiting gathered easily as the shot lacked conviction. On 55 minutes Odd Down took the lead with a quick break catching out the United defence for the opening goal.
The score line did not remain for long as James Springett drilled a free kick towards the near post on 63 minutes which was helped into the net by the Odd Down keeper for the equaliser. United then began to ring the changes with Sam Olsen being replaced by Kin. United were now looking for the lead with Luke Pemberthy picking out Adam Marsden on the right on 73 minutes but as had happened many times before the Odd Down keeper was equal to the shot.
The second Nailsea change came with ten minutes remaining with Ross Probert being replaced by Louis Parnham. Within a minute the ball was played wide right to Kin who showed he requires no invitation to shoot sending in a powerful shot which was again only parried by the visiting custodian but no Nailsea player could make a connection as the ball fell invitingly in front of goal.
Then two minutes from time Odd Down scored the winning goal with ball through the middle which caught out a hesitant Nailsea defence with the ball being prodded beyond Own Adamson and into the net.
Final Score. Nailsea United 1 Odd Down Reserves 2
This a very disappointing result for the Nailsea management, players and supporters who could claim that they were the victims of several crucial decisions by the referee but ultimately they simply did not take the chances that were created together with some outstanding saves by the Odd Down keeper.
At this level of football opponents are always likely to take advantage of defensive lapses. In truth United should have been out of sight at the end of the first half with more clinical finishing.