Beaconsfield slipped to a fifth defeat in Six league outings at Holloways Park on Saturday afternoon.
Whilst Four of those defeats have been against opponents in the top seven there was some cause for concern in the manner of the defeat to AFC Totton who ran out comfortable 2-0 winners and could, may be should? Have won more comfortably.
One good chance aside The Rams never really looked like scoring and despite good positions, failed to find the quality or spark to break down a resolute and well organised Totton defence.
There was also discipline trouble for Jon Underwood as Asher Yearwood and James Dobson will now miss playing time through totting up of cards.
Dobson, somewhat harshly booked before the break, simply standing his ground when Leon Maloney fell over the top of him, saw Red after picking up his second yellow card for another more obvious foul on Maloney just after the hour. In that moment the game was effectively over as a contest.
The visitors were already one goal to the good, after taking the lead in the 55 minute with their first shot on target.
A promising Beaconsfield position on their left ended with possession being squandered cheaply, with The Rams on the front foot. Totton sprang the counter, Seconds later Joseph Turner rounded it off with a calm finish, slotting home from 12 yards.
It was a carbon copy of Beaconsfield’s best chance of an evenly contested, if somewhat uninspiring, first half.
Zidan Akers through on goal, as Totton looked for an offside flag that didn’t come, with time to pick his spot, or square to Tom McElroy for a tap in went for power. Driving his shot too close to Louis Noice in the Totton goal who blocked it away to safety for a corner.
The home side just about shaded the first half but the save from Akers was the only real incident of note at either end. There were a few half chances but neither side managed to convert possession or pressure into quality opportunities.
For Totton, Maloney was a constant threat but Beaconsfield defended well and Matt Rowley was largely untroubled as both sides played some controlled football but lacked the final pass and too often surrendered possession cheaply.
After Dobson's dismissal, Beaconsfield did their best but never really threatened a well organised and disciplined Totton who held The Rams at arms length with some comfort.
The only real surprise was that Totton only added one more goal to their tally Luke Hallett firing home their second after 76 minutes.
But for Three fine saves from Matt Rowley in the closing minutes Totton would have run out even more comfortable winners.
The Rams now face two tricky away trips to face Dorchester and Basingstoke knowing that these are the sort of fixtures that will define the rest of their season. They will need to improve significantly on this performance.
Images ©Neale Blackburn Photography 2023