Yeovil Town and Truro City shared out a 2-2 draw this afternoon at Treyew Road in the third pre-season friendly of the 2011-12 season. Two goals from Andy Williams gave those visiting Cornwall some joy to take home with them, but goals right at the start and end of the game from Dan Smith and a second credited to Scott Walker gave the Conference South new boys something to cheer about, as the look for a first pre-season win continues.
Fielding two new faces in former Oldham Athletic goalkeeper Dean Brill and former Arsenal defender Kerrea Gilbert, the match opened with two quickfire goals, with the home side taking the lead as early as the second minute. A Truro shot was blocked by a Glovers defender, and the ball rebounded out to Dan Smith who fired home, past Dean Brill, with the ball landing in the back of the net off the inside of the post.
The Glovers quickly hit back though. Kerrea Gilbert was being utilised as a right wing-back in a 3-4-1-2 formation, and he managed to break down the flank, putting in an excellent cross that Andy Williams met with a header that looped over home keeper Tim Sandercombe for an equalising goal with just seven minutes gone.
Yeovil went on to boss the first half, in terms of possession, even if on target chances were hard to come by. Kerrea Gilbert and Andy Williams both put chances wide of the target as the Glovers got in good crosses from wide positions, with Gavin Williams looking dangerous from set pieces. Truro's chances were rare, and they lost striker Stewart Yetton midway through the half, using that as an opportunity to change to a 4-5-1 formation that left former Glovers transfer target Les Afful up front on his own. However, Bondz N'Gala was having a particularly commanding game at the back for Yeovil, and was able to snuff out most of the danger that Afful posed.
The second half opened in the same way as the first one did - a goal in the opening two minutes. A ball into the box from Nathan Jones - operating on the opposite flank as a wing-back - was met by the head of Bondz N'Gala, who used his physical presence to pile through the Truro defence. Home keeper Tim Sandercombe made the save, but in a perfect poaching position, Andy Williams was there to force the rebound home from close range.
Not too surprisingly, the 43 minutes that followed saw a glut of personnel and formation changes, with Dominic Blizzard, Aaron Lescott and Anthony Edgar playing a large chunk of the second half. Blizzard's entry onto the field of play was unfortunately aborted; taking a hefty challenge on his ankle/foot area, and despite re-entering the field after treatment he was taken off shortly afterwards - hopefully just a precaution.
The Glovers spread the ball around very nicely, with Andy Williams operating in the hole to great effect during the game, and the wing-back system causing the Cornish side plenty of problems. However, it was a soft goal that gave the home side their equaliser. Having been on the back foot for much of the game, a corner taken by Scott Walker seemed to catch everyone napping, with Glovers trialist keeper Dean Brill beaten at his near post, via what looked to be a deflection off one of his defenders (reported by the Cornish press as Aaron Lescott) to level things up at 2-2 just five minutes from the end.
That was something of a disappointment, given how Yeovil had done most of the pressing during the match, with particularly impressive performances from Bondz N'Gala, Andy Williams and Kerrea Gilbert during the match. Hopefully though, their tendency to switch off at critical moments in defence, is not going to become a repeat of last season's tendencies.
As a side note, both Paul Huntington and Kieran Agard travelled with the squad to the game, although neither made the squad on the day - presumably both are carrying knocks, with Hunts having missed the midweeker against Inverness as well. However, there was no sign of goalkeeper Martin Horsell, or winger Alan O'Brien - the latter a little surprising given his speedy performance at Huish Park in midweek. Hopefully again that is down to a knock.
Final Score: Truro City 2 Yeovil Town 2.
Scorers: Dan Smith (1-0, 2 mins), Andy Williams (1-1, 7 mins), Andy Williams (1-2, 47 mins), Scott Walker (2-2, 85 mins)
Yeovil Town: 1. Dean Brill, 2. Luke Ayling, 3. Nathan Jones, 4. Bondz N'Gala, 5. Jim Patterson, 6. Paul Wotton, 7. Andrew Williams, 8. Ed Upson, 9. Steven MacLean, 10. Gavin Williams, 11. Kerrea Gilbert.
Substitutes: 14. Rhys Baggridge, 15. Danny Fitzsimons (86 mins for Nathan Jones), 16. Dominic Blizzard (50 mins for Paul Wotton), 17. Aaron Lescott (55 mins for Kerrea Gilbert), 18. Billy Gibson (75 mins for Dominic Blizzard), 19. Lewis Clarke, 20. Anthony Edgar (55 mins for Gavin Williams), 21. Lewis Perkins (80 mins for Andy Williams), XX. Alistair Slowe.
Truro City: 1. Tim Sandercombe, 2. Barry McConnell, 3. Scott Walker, 4. Arran Pugh, 5. Steve Adams, 6. Jake Ash, 7. Andrew Taylor, 8. Marcus Martin, 9. Stewart Yetton, 10. Les Afful, 11. Dan Smith.
Substitutes: Danny Clay (for Stewart Yetton), Josh Bragg, Cody Cooke (for Marcus Martin), Ryan Yeoman (for Andy Taylor), Andrew Watkins (for Les Afful), Tom Brooks.
Attendance: 274 (including approx 30 Yeovil fans)
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