Two Moments Of Real Quality See Farnham Town Beat Banstead Athletic 2-0
After last week’s cup disappointment, it was back to the ‘bread and butter’ of the Combined Counties league for the Town on Saturday.
And, to extend the food analogy, they served up a real ‘meat and potatoes’ performance to secure a 2-0 win over Banstead Athletic.
Given the weather conditions and waterlogged pitch, this was always going to be a match more likely to be won by honest endeavour rather than skill and finesse, and, as such, it perfectly suited Farnham Town’s strengths and compact, combative, style of play.
In a largely forgettable first half an hour, both sides were made to battle more against the elements than each other, with sliding tackles and long balls launched down the channels more appropriate to the conditions than short passes and surging runs into space.
However, inspired by the movement and vision of Matt Glass, the Town gradually gained superiority and, as the match began to open up, they saw chances created for first George Pilbeam, and then Matt Glass himself, who sent a glancing header just past the post.
Pegged back inside their own half, Banstead offered very little in reply, although, just before half-time, Farnham ‘keeper Harry Birchnall was forced to make one sharp save from a Banstead striker who was sent through on goal before attempting a clever chip.
And then, just as everyone’s thoughts had turned to half-time refreshments, the Town produced their first moment of sublime quality.
It came from Farnham’s man of the match, Dan Stewart, who bamboozled the Banstead defence with a neat piece of skill on the edge of the area, before playing a perfect pass to set up Matt Glass, who, in turn, applied a precise finish to beat the Banstead ‘keeper.
The second half saw more of the same. Atrocious weather and continual Farnham pressure.
Kayode Conteh might have doubled Farnham’s lead, only to see his snapshot well saved by the overworked Banstead ‘keeper.
But another goal was always coming, and so it proved on 66 minutes when, having been set up by Josh Ogunseye’s pass, Dan Stewart produced his second moment of magic with a clever piece of close control before slotting home.
All that was left was for Jack Mitchell to make a fine challenge to preserve the Town’s clean sheet as Banstead briefly threatened.
Farnham Town manager Colin Millard was justifiably pleased with his side’s performance:
“In what can only be described as horrendous conditions we eventually got ourselves going to be worthy winners.
For the first 30 minutes we really struggled to do the basics well enough.
We haven’t been able to train over the past week and it seemed like we didn’t know each other. So, it took us half an hour to remember how to control and pass the ball to one another but once we did, I felt that there was only one winner of the game.
Our goal on the stroke of half time was as good a piece of football you’ll see at this level topped off by a class finish by Glassy.
The second half we dominated.
Scored another well worked goal with a composed finish from Dan Stewart and, in reality, we should have gone on and won by more.
You have to give credit to both sets of players and the match officials for putting on such an entertaining game in terrible conditions.
On to the next!”.
Three more points on the back of three consecutive league wins sees Farnham Town in the top half of the league with at least one game in hand over every team above them. Things are, quite literally, looking up for a side still learning at this level!
MOTM : Dan Stewart
The Town’s next home match is the league game against Jersey Bulls on Tuesday 12 October. Kick off 7:45pm