A warm Easter Monday saw Westfield at The Grove for the return fixture with Nailsea United. The away side were promoted to the Premier Division at the end of last season but have found the transition difficult. Nailsea were looking to put the disappointment of last Saturday’s defeat at Shirehampton behind them with three matches to go before the end of the season.
United were on the front foot from the off taking the lead on seven minutes in spectacular style. A move that started deep in their own half saw Sam Olsen tee up Ben Barrett on the right who steadied himself before unleashing a rocket shot which beat the keeper all ends up on the angle. A fine goal for any standard of football.
Nailsea were in command playing flowing football which brought them their second goal on the quarter of an hour mark. It was Ben Barrett again on the right playing a perfectly weighted ball taking out the defender for Ryan Ford to cross beyond the far post where Ben Pinkney waited. There was still work to do for the talented young player but he worked a shooting position before sending the ball across the keeper into the far corner to double the Nailsea lead.
The Westfied side were restricted to rare attacks which found the United defence in good form backed by the handling of Rob Brown between the posts. It was a long kick by Brown that nearly created goal number three when Sam Olsen controlled the ball before laying off to Ben Barrett but on this occasion the keeper made a save with his legs.
On 34 minutes Ben Pinkney showing good close control in midfield found Will Symonds on the left, a searching pass into the goal area needed only a touch but none of his colleagues could make a connection.
As half approached Westfield put an attack together which tested Brown before the official called a halt for the break.
Half Time. Nailsea United 2 Westfield 0
This was a much better display from the home side continually probing the Westfield defence being rewarded with two fine goals.
The second half started with Westfield being the stronger side as they tried to gain a foothold in the game. Nailsea weathered this initial pressure to created their own chances with a Ryan Ford drive beaten away to be followed by a Ben Pinkney free kick headed wide by Ryan Ford.
The home side were not to be denied a further goal which came on 64 minutes. A mistake by the Westfield defence was seized on by Sam Olsen who showed his usual composure to lob the ball over on rushing keeper to send the ball into the empty net. This was a timely goal as Westfield were having their best spell of the match.
With 20 minutes to play Nailsea made their first change with Henry Williams replacing the injured Adam Marsden who had another strong game at the heart of the defence. Immediately, United created another chance when Matt Day met a Ben Barrett free kick from the right with a glancing header forcing a good save from the keeper.
On 85 minutes the last United change was made when the hard working Matt Day gave way to Neil Watts. Westfield to their credit never gave up being gifted with a goal on 88 minutes when Rob Brown was caught out by the bounce of the ball off of the hard surface allowing the visitors to score a consolation goal.
Final score. Nailsea United 3 Westfied 1
On a hot afternoon credit must go to both sides for providing an entertaining match with United at last making their approach work pay off with three well taken goals.
Nest Saturday April 27th United are at home to Worle with a 3.00pm start. The final match of the season is on Saturday May 11th when Ilminster Town are the visitors again with a 3.00pm kick off.