The first team got their pre-season underway on Wednesday evening with a trip away to Romsey Town. With a nice playing surface available to both sides and perfect weather to match, it was a good game to start a challenging pre-season schedule.
In the early stages of the game both sides showed a few signs of delivering the first goal, although it was Romsey Town who took the lead. After a succession of corners, we were unable to defend the 3rd one in a row, with the ball creeping inside the far post from a well worked routine.
As the first half progressed, Romsey Town threatened further with a number of efforts going to waste. At the other end Brett Denham, Daryl Philips and Jordan Holmes made some teasing runs through the Romsey Town backline, but were unable to level the scoreline.
Half time - Romsey Town 1 - 0 Tadley Calleva
At the start of the second half we made 3 changes and there was an immediate response. We won a corner on our first attack and we were unable to connect to a well delivered cross.
The intensity of our play and direction of attacks were far better than the first half and this enabled us to get into the final third on many occasions. We were looking to create some goal scoring opportunities, but these were rare and we were unable to deliver any dangerous crosses into the Romsey Town box.
As we were beginning to show signs of gaining an equaliser, Romsey Town took the their tally even further with a second goal coming from poor defending.
We still carried on with the game plan and we were very unfortunate not pull a goal back. Firstly Brett Denham beat the office trap, looked to round the goalkeeper, but he came off best. Shortly after this Brett Denham again supplied a very dangerous ball across the 6 yard box, that Daryl Philips was unable to connect with.
The game was coming to its close when Romsey Town took the lead to 3 and then 4, after we made mistakes that were dually punished.
Full time - Romsey Town 4 - 0 Tadley Calleva
Post Match Manager comments:
"We were second best this evening and Romsey Town fully deserved their victory. We can make as many excuses as we like, but what is inexcusable, is the mistakes that cost us goals. There were a number of bright spells in the game where we should’ve capitalised, so we have to ensure we maintain these moments in the future and take full advantage. It is still very much early days of this new project, but it was apparent where we need to strengthen within the squad. We did have an extremely small bench tonight and some players played longer than planned, but we have to deal with this and ensure in future we are better prepared.
As mentioned previously, these exercises are in place to expose our weaknesses so we can work with the players and correct them before we start on August 3rd. While a loss is hard to take, the positives from finding areas to improve on is the most important thing. We are very much looking forward to our game next week, where we will continue our progress.”
- Adam Clark