Slimbridge 1-2 Bridport
Saturday 3rd May
The Swans signed off their first season in the Western Premier League with a narrow defeat to Bridport at Wisloe Road. Goals from Tom Richardson and Ryan Dovell had put the visitors in the driving seat, but a good last 15 minutes saw the home side reduce the deficit through a Jamie Martin penalty. Despite home pressure, Slimbridge were unable to get the second goal to gain a point. The result sees the Swans end up in 16th position after a rollercoaster of a season.
Slimbridge made a good start, and Brett James was unlucky in the first minute to see his shot drift just the wrong side of the Bridport post. Bridport's first chances fell to James Filkins and Shane Evans, but both their shots ended up well off target.
Bridport Keeper Sam Filkins was the first stopper to be called into action to make a save when, with ten minutes gone, Paul Fahy's long range effort following a neat pass from Callum Brown was at least on target.
It seemed that the visitors had left their shooting boots back in Dorset, when Chris Luke's effort was nearer to the edge of the penalty box than the goalpost on 24 minutes, before Martin coaxed another stop from Filkins, this time with an effort which was created by some good work by Ben Tunnicliff.
The Swans had a let off on 27 minutes when Scott Gearon scuffed his clearance to Dovell, who lobbed the ball back over the Slimbridge Keeper. His shot, however, was not strong enough to reach the net, and Gearon was able to turn and recover the ball before it reached the goalline.
Chances were still coming at both ends, but none of them were particularly threatening to the opposition. Fahy forced a save from Filkins as the Swans pressed, and Dan Wise managed to reach the Car Park with another effort which was well off target.
Two minutes before the break, Bridport broke the deadlock - A cross from Luke found Richardson in space in the box, and he headed the ball home past Gearon to give the visitors the lead.
On 63 minutes, an almost repeat of the move had exactly the same result - another cross not dealt with properly, and this time it was Ryan Dovell's header which did the damage.
Slimbridge nearly pulled a goal back almost immediately, when Tunnicliff's header from a corner was just inches wide, but on 78 minutes, the deficit was reduced.
Richard Thwaite's good break set up Martin, who was felled in the penalty box as he shaped to shoot. Martin picked himself up and converted the penalty.
Despite pressure from the home side, which saw firstly Martin, and then Jack Twyman both go close, they were unable to get the equaliser, and Bridport held on to secure the three points.
Team: Gearon, Preece, Brown, Thwaite, Tunnicliff, Parrott, Janes, Twyman, Martin, Lane(Sterling 55), Fahy
Supporters Man of the Match: Paul Fahy
Supporters Goal of the Season Vote
Friday 2nd May
Nominations and votes are now being collected for Supporters Goal of the Season. Nominations for the first team received are (in no particular order) as follows -
Adam Mace - Volley against Longwell Green H - April
Jamie Martin - Rocket away at Bridport - October
Liam Harding's long range thunderbolt at Willand Rovers - November
Liam Harding's 25 yarder at home to Warminster - October
Sean Bennett's strike against Warminster in the Les Phillips Cup - October
Adam Mace's corner at home to Melksham which he swears was deliberate! - October
Jack Twyman's Rooney-esque overhead kick v Ilfracombe at Wisloe - April
Jack Twyman's solo effort at Hallen - April
For the reserves Jason Scrivens has nominated himself for his goal against Cashes Green. More nominations are needed to prevent a walkover win
You can vote in person at the ground tomorrow, via Twitter (@slimbridgeafc) or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Closing date is Sunday Night, the winner will be announced in due course.
Slimbridge 2-3 Larkhall Athletic
Thursday 1st May
The second contest between the two sides in ten days was a far closer affair than the first when Larkhall ran out 4-1 winners, but ultimately, the destination of the points was the same.
In a thoroughly entertaining encounter, the Swans ran the visitors close, but ultimately, the class that saw Larkhall collect over one hundred points this season with the victory saw Larkhall edge the match. But Slimbridge can take great heart from the way they matched the runaway League Champions for the 90 minutes.
The match started in explosive fashion for the home side - with 25 seconds on the clock Jamie Martin chased a through ball and lobbed Larks Keeper Chris Snoddy to put the home side ahead.
Larkhall's resilience, though, could not be questioned, and Tyler Sibbick, scourge of the Swans at Plain Ham when he collected a hat trick, pulled a goal back for the visitors on 18 minutes, before Jamie Lyon's Free Kick just before the half hour sent Larkhall in ahead at the break.
Martin collected his second of the night with a penalty on 55 minutes, but parity lasted only ten minutes, when Sibbick again popped up to restore the advantage for Larkhall, recording his fifth goal against Slimbridge in under a fortnight.
Despite the best efforts of the home side, Larkhall controlled the final period of the match to pick up the points to the delight of their travelling fans.
Team: Gearon, Preece, Brown, Thwaite, Tunnicliff (Sterling 66), Ward, Turner (Cornock 82), Twyman, Martin, Fahy, Mace (Parrott 71)
Goals: Martin 1, 55
Supporters Man Of The Match: Freddy Ward
Still League positions to play for in the final week...
Sunday 27th April
With the season entering it's final week, games remaining for most clubs still mean that league positions are up for grabs depending on the final few days of results. At the top, the title is done and dusted, with Larkhall moving up to the Southern League next season, and Bristol Manor Farm now confirmed as finishing in second spot.
At the other end of the table, Hengrove Athletic, on 22 points with two games remaining were relegated as a result of Saturday's results, and they will be joined by either Radstock Town, Bishop Sutton or Ilfracombe.
Radstock, on 28 points have two games left, hosting Buckland Athletic on Tuesday night, before travelling to Brislingon on Saturday.
Bishop Sutton, on 29 points have only one game remaining - they host Bitton also on Tuesday night to bring their season to a close.
Ilfracombe Town look to be in the best position of the three clubs in the mix - They sit with 30 points, and have three games left - at home to Hallen on Tuesday, then again at home to Odd Down (Bath) on Saturday, before wrapping up the season on Monday 5th May, when they travel to Hengrove for their final game.
With Winterbourne United a point behind The Swans and having completed their fixtures, 16th place at minimum is assured for Slimbridge, who now sit with 43 points. Depending on their last two results, they could reach 14th, a testament to the improved performance in the second half of the season when you consider they were bottom of the table in November.
Bradford Town and Shepton Mallet have clinched the top two spots in Division One.
Hallen 0-2 Slimbridge AFC
Saturday 26th April
A goal in each half saw the Swans take a comfortable three points from Hallen at Moorhouse Lane this afternoon. Harlie Price, who later was dismissed after a clash with Hallen Keeper Lee Ballard finished off a neat move to put the visitors ahead in the first period, and an impressive solo effort from Jack Twyman after the break secured the victory.
The win lifts Slimbridge above local rivals Winterbourne United, who have now completed their fixtures, to 16th place in the Western Premier League with two games remaining.
Slimbridge were looking to bounce back from two 4-1 defeats, and started the game, which was played in blustery conditions, at a good pace. Twyman's first minute cross was just too long for Dean Turner at the back post, while Jamie Martin also went close with a shot on the turn after nine minutes.
Hallen had a couple of early chances, but poor finishing from both Chris Church and Ben Crewe saw their efforts well off target.
As the game approached the 20 minute mark, the visitors began to exert some real pressure - firstly Freddy Ward's Free Kick managed to miss everyone as it swept across the Hallen goalmouth, and then Twyman and Adam Mace combined in a lovely move to set up Price, whose shot was just wide.
A minute later, though, the deadlock was broken - Twyman and Jamie Martin were involved in a great piece of interplay, and Price made no mistake to finish off what was by far the best move of the match thus far.
Slimbridge continued to press, and Mace went close with a header from Martin's cross, before Martin himself went close - Ballard stopped the striker's first effort, and the ball rebounded out to Martin, but his effort to lob the Hallen Keeper ended up just the wrong side of the post.
The Swans had one more good opportunity before the break, as Mace charged down a Hallen clearance, but again, Price's lob was just off target, and the visitors went into the break thoroughly deserving of their lead.
The second half saw more of the same, as Slimbridge continued to make all the running - Turner's shot was blocked just after the restart, and Alex Hoyle's break saw Mace hit the side netting after a clever diagonal pass had played him into space.
Twyman was beginning to break forward from midfield as well, and he went close after more good work from Martin and Price on 54 minutes.
Hallen were reduced to long range efforts, and James Derossa's deflected shot which proved an easy stop for Scott Gearon was their best effort early in the second half.
Twyman again went close after another probing cross from Ward, before the Swans were reduced to ten men with an hour on the clock.
Harlie Price reacted badly to a challenge from Keeper Ballard as the two tussled for the ball, and retaliated with a stamp. Harlie was shown a straight red card by Referee Ricketts.
For a few minutes, it looked as if Hallen would get back into the game, but again Matt Fisher and then Simon Knight barely troubled Gearon with their efforts.
Eight minutes after the sending off, it was game over. Twyman broke from midfield and his mazy run took him past three Hallen defenders before he slid the ball home for a stylish solo effort.
Mace then put another telling cross over which Turner just failed to connect with, and as the game played out, Alex Hoyle had his effort saved after more good work by Turner.
In the last minute, Callum Brown nicked the ball from Ballard as he tried to shepherd it out for a goal kick, and his cross aimed at Turner was just cleared as Turner shaped to slot the ball into the empty net.
In the end it was a comfortable victory for the Swans, who entertain Champions Larkhall Athletic at Wisloe Rod on Wednesday (7.45pm) before they wind up their first season in the Western League next Saturday, when Bridport are the visitors (3.00pm).
Team: Gearon, Preece (Thwaite 47), Brown, Tunnicliff, Hoyle, Ward, Turner, Twyman, Price, Martin (Lane 57), Mace
Goals: Price 25, Twyman 68
Supporters Man of the Match: Alex Hoyle
Larkhall Athletic 4-1 Slimbridge AFC
Monday 21st April
It was always going to be a tough ask for Slimbridge travelling to league Champions Larkhall on the day the Trophy was being presented to the hosts, but, after holding their own in the first period, the Swans self destructed in the second period and were ultimately well beaten. Gifting the home side two of their goals, coupled with the dismissal of Callum Brown meant that Slimbridge had an impossible task after the break, and the home dutifully picked up their 30th win of their 36 League games this season.
It could have been so different though - Larkhall came out of the blocks with purpose, as you would expect, and made a strong start, dominating the first period without creating too many chances as the Swans worked hard to close down their opponents - Steve Bridges went close for the hosts after 17 minutes following good work from Charlie Maddison, and ten minutes before the break, Larkhall had a goal ruled out when Bridges' shot came back off the post to Robert Hobbs who netted, but he was ruled offside.
The Swans made a good start to the second period, and Jamie Martin was too slow to take opportunity of Fred Ward and Harlie Price's good work, but on 54 minutes, it all started to unravel. Tyler Sibbick looped a harmless looking header towards goal, and Scott Gearon, in for the injured Dave Evans, fumbled the ball over the line to put Larkhall one up.
Five minutes later, Callum Brown's two footed tackle saw a straight red card from Referee Cobb, and the Swans were really up against the wall.
Larkhall continued to press, and Scott Lye managed to hit the side netting after good work from Sibbick had sent him clear just before the hour.
Seven minutes later, the lead was doubled - Jacon Gardner's cross was swept home by Siddick to make it two. Two minutes later, it was three - a game of head tennis in the Swans' box saw Freddy Ward's misplaced header nodded home by Siddick to record his hat trick.
Larkhall's third goal in this deadly five minute spell saw Siddick set up Nat Auckland, who drilled the ball past Gearon to put the game away.
Dean Turner's strike after being set up by Adam Mace was no more than a consolation with virtually the last kick of the match, as Slimbridge slumped to their second 4-1 setback over Easter.
The Swans make their final away trip of the season on Saturday when they travel to Hallen (3.00pm) before their final two home games, at home to Larkhall on Wednesday May 30th (7.45pm) and Bridport (May 3rd, 3.00pm).
Team: Gearon, Brown, Mace, Sterling, Tunnicliff, Ward, Turner, Twyman, Price, Martin, Fahy (Butler 67)
Supporters Man of the Match: Dean Turner
Slimbridge 1-4 Winterbourne United
Saturday 19th April
A sluggish display from the Swans saw Winterbourne notch up their second 4-1 victory over Slimbridge this season. The home side never recovered from conceding an early goal from Sam Vile. Vile and Ben Dowdell added further goals before Paul Fahy pulled one back, but a fourth goal for the visitors from Matt Maynard sealed the victory.
Winterbourne took the lead after seven minutes when Voile capitalised on some sloppy play from the home defence to put Winterbourne ahead with the first real attack of the game. Ashley McCrave also went close a couple of minutes later as the hosts made a sluggish start.
Winterbourne were creating the better chances - Dowdell went close on 19 minutes with a shot across goal, before the same player brought a good save from Dave Evans when put throigh one on one with the Swans Keeper.
Slimbridge were further disrupted by a nasty looking knee injury picked up by Jack Rutter just before half time, and which saw him carried from the pitch to be replaced by Dean Turner.
Ten minutes into the second half, Winterbourne doubled their advantage when Vile flicked on a free kick to register his second of the afternoon. Five minutes later, it was game over as Dowdell chased a through ball and nicked it past Evans for the third Winterbourne goal.
Seven minutes from time, Paul Fahy pulled a goal back after Winterbourne KeeperTom Sheppard puch the ball to the edge of his box, and Fahy lobbed the ball back into the net.
The visitors went straight down the other end and scored again, Evans making a good save from Dowdell's shot, only to see the ball rebound to Matt Maynard who slid the ball home to cap a miserable afternoon for the home side.
Team: Evans, Preece, Rutter (Turner 34), Bennett, Tunnicliff, Ward, Fahy, Twyman, Price (Cornock 65), Martin (Lawson 59), Mace
Goal: Fahy 83
Supporters Man of the Match: Callum Preece
Slimbridge 2-2 Brislington
Tuesday 15th April
The Swans will be kicking themselves after throwing away a two goal advantage in the last five minutes, although the result extends their unbeaten run to five games. Two first half goals in two minutes from Harley Price and a Jamie Martin penalty had put the home side in the driving seat, and they looked the better side right up until the end of the game. In the 85th minute, Alex Lambert pulled a goal back for the visitors, and, within a minute, John Moss's header had evened up the scores.
The first half began scrappily, but exploded into life just after the half hour, when Slimbridge went ahead. A Callum Brown free kick was swept home by Harley price to put the home side in front. Two minutes later, a Price flick on had found Jamie Martin, who was bundled over in the Brislington box. Martin took the spot kick himself and converted. Inbetween the two goals, Slimbridge Keeper Dave Evans had made a point blank save from a Jason Hughes' header to keep Brislington out.
Evans was again the hero on 67 minutes when he pulled off another close range save, this time from Danny Barwood's header, and ten minutes from time, then Keeper again stretched to push a long range effort over.
Brislington were not to be denied though, and goals from Lambert, a Free Kick, and then Moss sent Brislington back to Bristol with a share of the spoils.
The Swans entertain Winterbourne United on Good Friday at Wisloe Road (1pm) and travel to Larkhall Athletic on Easter Monday (2pm)
Team: Evans, Preece, Brown, Sterling, Tunnicliff, Turner, Fahy, Twyman, Price, Martin (Chandler 65), Mace (Ward 71)
Goals: Price 32, Martin (Pen) 34
Supporters Man of the Match: Dave Evans