Yeovil Town Reserves crashed 3-1 at home to Swansea City Reserves at Huish Park this afternoon to bring to an end their fine run of October form. The Glovers Reserves have won all their games this month, but couldn't get to grips with a strong Swansea side until after the break, by which time they were two goals down.
Yeovil lined up in a 4-3-3 starting formation, with Adebayo Akinfenwa finally getting onto the field of play for the first time since breaking his leg in February whilst playing for Swansea and so it was somwhat appropriate that he should line-up against his former team-mates to make his debut for the Glovers.
However, Swansea started the game in far stronger fashion and they opened the scoring when Andrea Orlandi picked the ball up 30 yards out, stepped forward then curled a shot into the top left corner and in off the bar with 20 mins gone to put Swansea 1-0 up.
Philip Mulryne was the one previously unknown face in the Glovers starting line-up and he played as a central midfield playmaker. He is a former Northern Ireland international who has been on the books of Norwich City, Manchester United and most recently Leyton Orient at the tail end of last season. As of last weekend, he is on non-contract forms with Kings Lynn. An early chance on goal for the midfielder went just wide as he tried to impress.
The Jacks doubled their lead after 34 minutes with Guillem Bouza's diving header coming after a Swansea break down the right was followed by a cross over into the box and there was little that keeper Lloyd Irish could do about that or indeed the opening goal.
Wilfied Domoraud landed in the book for a foul as the Glovers front trio looked frustrated. Striker Adebayo Akinfenwa looked like a player who hasn't played football for seven months and James Walker was struggling to get into the game. The Glovers were passing around OK but not as good as in recent weeks in the Reserves that has seen them rattle in the goals.
Akinfenwa managed to get on one strong break, but ran out of steam halfway through his run and his chance to score was lost. His battle with former team-mate Alan Tate was a fascinating one, but the Swansea defender was on top form, marshalling his defence well, and his side completed the half looking more than comfortable.
Unsurprisingly, Akinfenwa was withdrawn at half time along with centre-back Ricky Davey, as the Glovers changed their shape to a 4-4-2 in an attempt to wrestle control of midfield. Craig Alcock moved into the centre of midfield, with substitute Owen Irish taking his place. The other half time introduction Ren Turnock moved to a right-wing position, with Mulryne moving out wide on the other flank.
That change of tactic did the business on 66 minutes, as some steady Yeovil pressure was rewarded with the Glovers getting back into the game. James Walker continued his fine run of form for the Reserves by netting from close range to bring the score back to 1-2.
The pressure continued beyond that goal, and with 12 minutes remaining, Courtnay Donald was introduced to the right-flank, replacing the tiring Mulryne as Turnock swapped flanks. All seemed to be set up for a Yeovil equaliser, but one of Swansea's substitutes had other ideas. With 8 minutes remaining, Keri Morgan cut in from the left flank and fired home a low shot for Swansea's third goal of the afternoon. Firmly against the run of play, but to make it pretty much game over for Yeovil.
One matter of concern on the day was how badly the Huish Park pitch cut up. Having seen it as a virtual bowling green over the past five seasons, it was concerning to see numerous tram-lines appearing each time a tackle was made and by the end it was not in good shape, so perhaps it is just as well that there are so few matches being played on it during November. The belief is that the nematode worms that eat away the topsoil have returned after being got rid of a season or two ago and that will obviously be a concern to the club so early into the season, given that the top soil can only be easily replaced over summer months.
Final Score: Yeovil Town Reserves 1 Swansea City Reserves 3.
Yeovil Town Reserves: (4-3-3) 1. Lloyd Irish 2. Craig Alcock (capt) 3. Sam Tillen 4. Rick Davey 5. Curtis Ujah 6. Lloyd Boateng 7. Philip Mulryne 8. Stephen Maher 9. Wilfried Domoraud 10. Adebayo Akinfenwa 11. James Walker
Subs: 12. Courtnay Donald (sub 78 mins for Philip Mulryne) 14. Ren Turnock (sub 46 mins for Adebayo Akinfenwa) 15. Owen Irish (sub 46 mins for Rick Davey)
Swansea City Reserves: 1. David Knight 2. Matthew Collins 3. James Burgin 4. Jamie Grimes 5. Alan Tate 6. Joe Allen 7. Shaun MacDonald 8. Owain Tudor-Jones 9. Guillem Bouza 10. Chris Jones 11. Andrea Orlandi
Subs: 12. Keri Morgan 13. David Cornell 14. Dion Chambers 15. Karl Keogh 16. Oliver Fisher
Referee: Iain Williamson.
Scorers: Andreas Orlandi (0-1, 20 mins), Guillem Bouza (0-2, 34 mins), James Walker (1-2, 66 mins), Keri Morgan (1-3, 82 mins).
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