Match Report 2000/2001

'Abysmal' Linnets in giveaway

Saturday 9th December 2000 : F.A. Carslberg Vase Third Round

Lymington & New Milton 3, Stotfold 4

Livid Lymington & New Milton manager Derek Binns branded his side "a bunch of schoolboys" after watching them throw away a 3-1 lead to lose 4-3 to Stotfold in the FA Vase.

With little more than 20 minutes remaining, the Linnets were seemingly home and dry with three quality goals having given them a comfortable 3-1 lead against a very ordinary Stotfold side. But some dreadful defending coupled with some stunning finishing by Stotfold's four-goal hero Mark Phillips left Binns with a face to match the black rain-filled clouds that hovered gloomily over Fawcetts Field.

"We were abysmal," fumed the Linnets' boss. "We've played like a bunch of schoolboys. Our defence has come up against someone (Mark Phillips) with a little bit of pace and they've gone totally to pot. I really can't believe it."

"You might have to check the records but, in all the time as manager of this club, I can never remember us letting in four goals before. Add to that the three at Bournemouth Poppies last week and that's seven in two games - it's never happened before", groaned Binns, who is threatening to wield the axe on a team harbouring ambitions of Dr. Martens League football next season."There will be changes," vowed Binns. "There are people knocking on the first-team door and I need to give them their chance now. We need to go right back to basics," he added.

Yet it could be argued that Mark Phillips shouldn't have been on the pitch to net his devastating second-half hat-trick as the striker escaped with just a yellow card for kicking Jimmy Sheppard right under the referee's nose early in the second half. "I wouldn't want to hide behind that excuse," snapped Binns. "We were just abysmal and that's it."

Everything looked rosy for the Linnets when Mark Smith rifled them into an 11th minute lead with a thumping 20 yard drive, only for it to be cancelled out by Phillips, who cashed in on the first communication problem between defender Nigel Mottashed and keeper Stewart Kearn. A wonderful 40-yard crossfield ball by Jason Stride released Steve Strong to make it 2-1 just before half-time - and when Steve Strong worked a neat one-two with Leigh Phillips to add a third on the hour mark, it looked game, set and match.

But a red-hot contender for defensive mix-up of the season saw Mottashed scoop the ball over Kearn to hand Phillips his second Christmas present of the afternoon on 67 minutes. Five minutes later, Phillips sprinted through to complete his hat-trick and, 11 minutes from time, the Linnets defence stood with their arms raised, seemingly holding imaginary umbrellas, as an offside-looking Phillips lobbed home the winner.

Lymington & New Milton : Kearn, Stride, Kemp, Morris, Mottashed, Gazzard, Sheppard, Strong, Smith, S. Hussey, L. Phillips, subs : N. Miles, Town, B. Phillips, Holmes, New.

Report courtesy of the New Forest Post

Match reports on this site are based on those appearing in the New Milton Advertiser & Lymington Times (except where separately credited) with additional material from my own resources where relevant.