SOUTH AND WEST COUNTY CHAMPIONSHIP U18
DEVON COUNTY FA v WILTSHIRE COUNTY FA
Sunday 30th September 2018
This was the first match in this season’s competition, it was played in perfect conditions, the ideal temperature, a perfect pitch and no wind.
The referee got the match underway with Wiltshire taking the kick off and pumped the ball straight up field where the Devon keeper Lewis Slade easily collected it and calmly played the ball short to his full back to set up Devon’s first attack.
The first ten minutes saw both teams probing the others defences but the deadline was broken in the twelfth minute when Devon put together a good move through the middle of the field when the ball fell to the impressive Jack Rhead, he looked up and passed a pinpoint ball to Striker Bailey Williams who fended off a Wiltshire defender and calmly slotted the ball home into the bottom left hand corner.
Devon’s tails were definitely up and you could see their confidence flowing, they calmly passed the ball around but couldn’t beat the Wiltshire defence.
Their persistence paid off on twenty second minute, when Rhead put in an excellent cross to Morgan Cullen who skilfully and spectacularly side footed a volley past the Wiltshire keeper who had no chance of saving it.
Devon were definitely on top but Wiltshire stood firm and started to put some moves together but couldn’t breakthrough the solid Devon defence and in the thirtieth Devon’s Harry Walford had the ball about thirty yards out and hit a thunder ball of a shot which narrowly went wide.
Wiltshire won themselves a free kick about twenty yards out lightly to the left the fine free kick was arrowed towards goal only for Slade to pull off a superb save to preserve Devon’s 2-0 lead.
The referee played a minute of added time but there was no further goals and the first half ended with Devon deservedly leading.
Devon kicked off the second half looking to carry on their superb first half display but Wiltshire looked to have composed themselves and were having more of the play and on the attack looked dangerous.
Wiltshire got their just rewards when Wiltshire’s Lewis Wilkins collected the ball ten yards out and hit a low shot at goal which beat Slade and the ball went in off the left hand post.
The match then turned into a hard fought physical midfield battle but in the seventieth minute Devon scored to restore their two goal lead when Charlie Miller skilfully headed home a speculative cross from the left giving Devon a 3-1 lead.
Devon looked very confident about seeing the game through or even increasing their lead but Wiltshire didn’t let their heads fall, kept pressing forward and threatening the Devon goal.
In the eighty fifth minute, Lewis Morrissey aimed a long rang shot at goal Slade looked to have had the shot covered but let the ball slip under his body to set up a nervous final five minutes for Devon.
Devon kept the ball and didn’t give Wiltshire any more chances of equalising and after playing two added minutes of time referee Nuria Bonet blew the final whistle, seeing Devon win the game 3-2.