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Rams Mauled by Dolphins in Poole Sunshine

Saturday 13th April 2024
Pitching In Southern League Premier Division South
Poole Town 3 Beaconsfield Town 0 Black Gold Stadium Att - 414

From the moment Jacques Kpohomouh’s depressingly familiar-looking challenge felled Tyler Forbes in the box after 8 minutes and Toby Holmes fired home the penalty, it became apparent that Beaconsfield Town hadn’t really turned up at the Black Gold Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

To be fair to the big defender he did seem to get a lot of ball, before his trailing leg caught Forbes but it is probably fair to say that in a season where this is a penalty and the challenge on Jefferson Louis at home against Gosport wasnt, I’m probably not qualified to judge anymore.

Poole Town on the other hand were fully on it. They were, quicker, stronger, more committed in the challenge and fighting for all they were worth. Fighting for each other and as a team, to secure the points and continue their fight to avoid the drop by leapfrogging The Rams.
Who by way of contrast, looked like a collection of individuals who had been introduced in the car park.

Fair enough some days the opposition are better but this is the same Poole Town that managed only two victories in a 17 game run stretching back to January.
Bouyed by their late win over Winchester in midweek they began a point behind Beaconsfield with a game in hand. Not exactly Chesham United form.

Beaconsfield didn’t lay a glove on them, second to everything, ponderous in possession, they had no answers and barely threatened.

When Holmes, the game’s outstanding player battered in a sweetly struck volley from the edge of the area, Five minutes before the break, any hope that this incarnation of Beaconsfield Town would somehow cobble together a performance and take something from the game was seen leaving the ground at halftime having turned its attention to the Grand National.


Half Time 2-0

There was a slight improvement after the break Beaconsfield tried to get on to the front foot but without really troubling the hosts who extended their lead seven minutes in, Forbes wriggling through to the byeline before squaring for Holmes to complete his hat trick.

At that point it appeared the final score rested on a question of how many the home team wanted to score, such was their dominance.
Jon Underwood threw on Dan Roth and Kam English and The Rams were marginally better after the break, Tom McElroy did his best, with little support from teammates or the officials.

Jake Gosling saw a shot well saved by Max Evans at his near post but the resulting corner was emblematic of their afternoon, low to the near post and hammered away under no pressure.

With his final attacking substitution, Underwood sent on Joe Wilson for Gosling and pushed Bradshaw into his preferred wide right role.
Minutes later skipper Luke Neville picked up a knock and was unable to continue, leaving The Rams to see out the final 15 minutes with 10 men.
Tom Norcott and slack finishing kept the final tally apparently respectable.

There can be no disguising the fact that this was an inept performance and a concerning one, coming as it does, at exactly the wrong moment with the finishing post looming into view, whilst many of their rivals are stretching for the line the nagging feeling persists that Beaconsfield are tying up and running out of gas.

Or maybe, as Jon Underwood wondered post-match, some of his players felt 47 points was enough and were already on the beach.

With the congested nature at the bottom and a next Saturday’s tricky visit to Winchester, a team who have recorded three wins out of three in previous meetings at this level. They will need to be disabused of that belief fairly sharpish.

Their hosts next week will have played two games in between, including Thursday evenings long trip to Tiverton Town, whilst The Rams have the week to recover and regroup they will need to use it well.

All images ©Neale Blackburn Photography 2024
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