Somerset Floodlit Youth League – South Division
Frome Town scorers: Crossman (2), Pollock, Seviour
Team: Bond, Brewster, Boulton, Trainer, Pack, Farley, Lunt, Seviour©, Pollock, Crossman, Porter
Subs: Locke(GK) Barnaby Mori Rudi
Dugout: Fosu Gharban(M), Rich Gould
Frome Town U18 played superbly as they did the double over previous league leaders Winscombe at Frome’s home ground also known as ‘The Dodge’ to take top spot with 2 games still in hand.
Frome were missing fullback Carver to suspension along with talented defender Clacee, these losses were offset by the return of the experienced U18 Mid Wilts league winner Trainer & Pack to the defence. Pack rather unusually played at fullback to allow Trainer to play centrally to aid Frome’s playing out from the back as Trainer is also a natural midfield player. Frome also rotated their goalkeepers with Bond taking his turn in goal this week with keeper Locke on the bench. Other than these changes Frome stayed, the same as for their last game a 2-0 win away to the same opponents.
Frome started the game poorly with Winscombe pressing very aggressively and high from the start of the match. Winscombe’s right side attacker unsettled Pack during this period with pace and trickery with Pack still trying to settle into his new role at left back the first time he had played it this season although he had played the position in previous seasons. Pack however as with the rest of the Frome team at least worked very hard to stay in the game with Pack making good last ditch challenges to stop any attacks while the excellent Trainer helped sweep up anything that got behind either of Frome’s fullbacks.
Frome continued even under pressure to try to build from the back. Pack again deserves credit for this as he methodically tried to keep finding accurate passes into midfield along the Frome’s other defenders, keeper Bond also was good with his distribution playing the ball out accurately from goal kicks into central midfield movement whenever he could.
Lunt’s central midfield movements to give passing options at goal kicks was commendable & after about 15 to 20 minutes of intense Winscombe pressing Frome had earned the right to play out as Winscombe’s ability to press intensely died after this initial 20 minute burst which is roughly the amount of time any team can realistically expect to press heavily for even if fit. Striker Pollock must also be commended for sterling work clearing corners defensively using his aerial ability to help mask Frome’s achilles heel in the air off crosses.
Now Frome had worked through the tough Winscombe test early on they began to reap the rewards of their patient buildup play with their creative front 5 of Farley, skipper Seviour, and striker Porter, Pollock & false 9 Crossman who’s linking play and movements to overload during buildup were outstanding, now taking control. First Pollock went through and put a couple of shots past the far post before Crossman opened the scoring off Seviour’s perceptive pass. Frome then went close from a corner having the ball cleared off the line twice. Pollock then scored the second after the Winscombe defence hesitated after a defected clearance that left Pollock onside with just the keeper to beat. Lunt & Seviour also had good chances to run at the Winscombe defence but could not quite find the right final ball after good initial work. Porter, who had been causing problems all night with his dribbling skill on the left, beat two men and put in a great cross for Crossman to tap home for 3-0 at HT.
The second half saw Porter and Pollock continue to dominate their half spaces missing a couple of chances each with Pollock making driving runs to provide shots and crosses while Porter continued his dribbling master class. Crossman however was at the hub of all Frome’s good build up play as he linked all Frome’s buildup from the false 9 with a superb understanding of the movements required from forwards to aid the defenders buildup from the back. Subs Rudi, Mori & Barnaby all came on and did well with Rudi going close with a first time shot and Mori showing good dribbling and passing skills in midfield. Skipper Seviour had the last word as he powered home for 4-0 with his 4th goal of the season from his attacking midfield role to seal the victory.
Frome’s area to work on in their next training session will be to improve the defenders 1v1 dribbling play to help them escape high presses more easily early on in matches when the opponents still have a lot of energy and can press for that golden 20 minute period before the intensity of that press then would recede allowing Frome to play out more easily from the back, from then on.