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Merthyr Town v Bracknell Town

10 February 2024

Merthyr Town v Bracknell Town

Kick Off:




Merthyr Town v Bracknell Town

Merthyr Town FC, Penydarren Park, Merthyr Tydfil, CF47 8RF

Match Report:

It wasn’t the result that Paul Michael wanted or needed at this stage of the season. This probably wasn’t entirely unexpected, as we were in a bad run of form that has inevitably affected confidence levels. Conceding thirteen goals in the last six games has been a contributing factor to slump in form.

And to be perfectly honest, being unable to deal with the physical nature of Bracknell’s game plan caused problems. Any side in this division is capable of fighting for all three points, frustrating as that may sound it’s basically a fact that all Clubs have to live with.

Bracknell were much the better organised side on the day and opened the scoring after just 17 minutes when Billy Stedman out paced Noah Smerdon in a foot race to a long ball, that he cut back across the six yard box for Max Herbert to score from close range. Tom Handley, setting an example as the captain, converted a ball into the box from Frazer Thomas to equalise after half an hour with a powerful strike on the turn.

Alex John was forced to leave the field with an ankle injury after 55 minutes to be replaced by Aneurin Livermore. Just after the hour mark Mark Herbert took the pass on the half turn, as Smerdon was caught on the wrong side and was adjudged to have fouled the Bracknell player leaving Mr Duffy with very little option but to point to the penalty spot. Despite an excellent save from Will Fuller, it was Ashley Lodge who reacted the quickest to follow up his penalty kick to restore Bracknell’s lead to the synchronised sighs of the home supporters.

In the 85th minute Bracknell broke quickly on the transition with three against four, Will Fuller pulled off another fine save pushing the ball onto the crossbar from a close range effort, although when the rebound was totally miskicked by a Bracknell player, a fine touch from Joseph Grant took the ball past Fuller before capitalising on this fortunate piece of luck to punish the Martyrs and find the back of the net.

From a Merthyr corner in the 89th minute, the second penalty of the day was awarded for a foul on Gethyn Hill that provided Ricardo Rees with the opportunity of emphatically converting his penalty-kick as he powered the ball beyond Joe Besant for a consolation goal.

It was another extremely disappointing home result that deprived the Martyrs of retaining third spot in the league table, as the yearning for a return to winning ways was painful.

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