Linnets leave it too late

Yate Town 3, Kings Lynn 2: What a difference a week makes. Seven days ago the Linnets were on a ten-game unbeaten run that had lifted them to third in the Southern League.

Yate Town 3, Kings Lynn 2

What a difference a week makes. Seven days ago the Linnets were on a ten-game unbeaten run that had lifted them to third in the Southern League. Two defeats on the road later, theyn are seeking a win to return their confidence and title ambitions.

Having been undone by defensive frailties at Banbury, the same problem saw Lynn go three goals behind to a Yate side in the bottom half of the Premier Division table before Dean West and Adam Smith restored some pride in the final ten minutes.

“We've conceded seven goals in two games now and we don't concede goals like that at all, so I was really disappointed,” said manager Tommy Taylor. “You score two goals away from home, and you expect to get something from the game. We've not done that on two occasions now.”

The absence of Cedric Anselin and Sam McMahon from midfield was notable as the hosts passed their way around the field with speed, accuracy and, above all, consummate ease.

“We've got a couple of big players out, but the players that are going in their positions should be able to adjust to that and be all right. But for the first 45 minutes we couldn't come to grips with them whatsoever.

Most Read

“I thought theirs was a very good team today, good balance; and I don't think we got at them enough in the first half and we didn't pass the ball well enough in the first half. But we still had a couple of good chances in the to score some goals.”

Yate had already created three good chances early on before they got their breakthrough via Adam Sims - the midfielder firing home from 18 yards after Lynn had failed to clear a dangerous move. Four minutes later new goalkeeper Arran Benstead was lucky to stay on the field. Darren Edwards was put through only to be taken down on the very edge of the box by the onrushing shot-stopper.

Benstead may have wished he had been sent off, however, when he got a hand to Dave Elsey's free-kick, only to see the ball drop under the bar and in. Before the festive period you might have expected the Linnets to turn around a 2-0 half time deficit. But on Saturday this was less the invincible warriors of the previous two months and more the side that timidly lost six of their first nine away games.

That much was apparent in the first 15 minutes of the second half as the Bluebells turned the screw and the style until Sims put Justin Pritchard through to coolly slot the third goal into the far corner.

Benstead redeemed himself for his earlier error by making save after save as Yate picked the Linnets defence apart at will. But the introduction of youngsters Luke Fell and Matt Peters with 25 minutes to go turned the game on its head, their quick feet and hard running suddenly creating chances.

Fell forced a corner on the right hand side, and West headed home to muted celebrations with ten minutes to go. Then, with stoppage time approaching, Peters ran down the right, and pulled the ball back to Smith, who blazed the ball into the top right corner from 25 yards.

A minute later Smith gave the fans an action replay of his piledriver- but this time keeper Tony Court was expecting it and tipped it over.

Too little, too late for the shell-shocked Linnets.

Yate: Court, Sims, Elsey, Brice, Jefferies, Vickerman, Wood, Chenoweth, Edwards, Pritchard (Cox 70), Campbell. Subs not used: Metheringham, Wyatt, Sylvester, Bridson. Goals: Sims (15), Elsey (21), Pritchard (50).

King's Lynn: Benstead, West, Smith, Hammond (Harvey 31), Jones (Fell 64), Camm, Defty, Carey, Nolan, Bloomfield, O'Halloran (Peters 64). Booking: Benstead (20). Goals: West (79), Smith (88)

Referee: J Farries (Adderbury).

Attendance: 210.

Results & table on page 38