Terras: Weymouth see off the Robins to continue FA Cup run
By Dan Rose
THE Terras just about did enough to book their place in the third qualifying round of the FA Cup as they came from behind to beat Bideford for the second time in five days.
The 4-1 scoreline probably flattered the hosts somewhat, but Stewart Yetton and Chris McPhee will not mind as they grabbed a goal each, and George Rigg put in a classy performance to bag a brace.
Manager Jason Matthews was hampered in his defensive options with the duo of Ed Palmer and Jake Wannell, who both got sent off in the previous round at Mangotsfield, suspended, and Sam Poole named on the bench but never likely to feature with an ankle injury.
Central-defender Calvin Brooks, formerly of Dorchester Town, was brought in on loan from Yeovil as cover and Callum Laird, brother of defender Jamie and son of assistant-manager Craig, who appeared for the club in pre-season, was also called up.
The absence of Palmer resulted in a shuffle in the Terras’ ranks with striker Tim Sills coming back into the side to replace him, meaning McPhee would drop back and start the game as a makeshift centre-half.
The clash got underway in frenetic fashion, and the Robins were on top early on with Kevin Squire looping a header that went close at the back post and ex-Terra Ben Wood hit a shot that Matthews was forced to deal with.
Weymouth continued to try and settle, but before they knew it, they were caught and fell behind.
A routine long ball was flicked on and Squire tenaciously nipped in and picked the ball up on the edge of the area, and Matthews, who was in no-man’s-land at the time, could only look on as the striker lifted it over him to open the scoring.
The lead only lasted all of three minutes though, as the Terras sparked into life through another well-drilled corner routine, something that has become a potent weapon in their arsenal this term.
After working it short, Chris Shephard clipped the ball to the back post where Sills volleyed the ball right-footed and the effort flicked off the thigh of Yetton, who was more than happy to claim the leveller.
That seemed to focus the home side and they began to find their rhythm, but were still suspect to the occasional Robins’ long ball.
The visitors did have the ball in the net once more through Wood, which was flagged offside, but just past the half-hour mark a scintillating move from the home side opened up their opponents.
Sweeping from one flank to the other, Ashley Wells and Adam Kelly linked up nicely to find Shephard, who ghosted past his man inside the area and threaded the ball through to Rigg to apply a neat side-foot finish.
However, Shephard’s afternoon was to take an abrupt end as he trudged off just before half-time holding his neck, and it looked at one point as if he may have had to be stretchered off after a brutal collision with Ian Sampson.
Having soldered on for the remaining moments in the first half a man light, Weymouth shuffled their pack once more by handing a debut to Brooks after the interval, and re-instating McPhee in a much more com-fortable midfield role.
And while Wood went close again for the Robins and Sills had a header which could have dropped in, the deciding factor of the contest came on 71 minutes.
Bideford defender Nick Milton, who was cautioned for dissent by referee Gary Parsons in the first half, hacked down Sills right in front of the referee and was given his second booking.
As much as the performance was not as free flowing as Weymouth have been at home this term, with a man advantage they came to the party, mainly thanks to two superb deliveries from left-back Jordan Copp.
He swung in a precise ball for McPhee to glance into the bottom corner on 82 minutes, and produced an almost complete replica three minutes later for Rigg to seal the game and leave Terras’ fans eagerly anticipating their next cup clash, with the draw being made today.