Woodton United visited Viking Reserves for the first league game of the season.
Late call offs, the East Anglian Derby and Sundown festival left the reds with a depleted team, which resulted in two players feeling unwell and coach Mortimer in the starting eleven, which is not ideal.
The game started evenly, and it was clear that Woodton lacked their usual intensity and desire which was understandable due to the factors effecting the team. Woodton’s passing was not as secure as usual and as a result the back three were under more pressure than they should have been. Despite all this E.Goodyear nearly opened the scoring twice, first latching onto a poor back pass he flicked just wide and then firing a header just wide after a cross form the right. Soon after Groom robbed a Viking defender and raced forward before chipping a delightful shot over the keeper and into the net to give The Reds a 1-0 lead. Viking responded well and put Woodton under pressure and after two opportunities to clear the ball were missed a Viking forward struck a good shot which Young couldn’t hold leading to another Viking forward scoring on the rebound. Woodton broke away once or twice in the rest of the half with Nelson and Groom, whilst at the other end Young made a good save and Muir, Hulme and Mattos kept Viking at bay.
HT: Viking Reserves 1-1 Woodton United
The second half was much of the same. Williams battled on manfully as did K.Smith who also provided some good passes which unfortunately didn’t lead to many opportunities. Gooch battled on feeling unwell but struggled to influence the game as he normally does. For periods Woodton’s passing improved but they struggled to really excerpt any prolonged pressure. At the other end Viking were having some success playing long balls into their striker and it was form one of these that he managed to fashion a lob which deceived Young and gave Viking the lead. Woodton rallied after this but possession was being surrounded easily by both teams. When it seemed the game would fizzle out in a 2-1 win for Viking, Woodton found some quality which released Nelson down the right who cut in before lashing a strong shot into the bottom corner to make the game 2-2. Sharman came on for Gooch, E.Goodyear was booked after an altercation with the Viking centre back and the game was again turning spicy. Then the ball was played into E.Goodyear who exchanged passes with Mortimer before racing through to plant the ball past the keeper and give Woodton a 3-2 lead with six minutes left. Woodton reorganised and looked comfortable until Young’s goal kick went to a Viking striker despite Mattos trying to intercept and the resultant shot brought the scores level just before the whistle.
FT: Viking Reserves 3-3 Woodton United (Groom, Nelson, E.Goodyear)
Photo credit: Sam Cordy