First Team vs. Basford United (0 : 4)
Evo-Stik League First Division South
Sheffield FC lost 4-0 at Basford in the Evo-Stik First Division South, as the league leaders prove their worth in the second half, writes Luke Phelps.
Basford’s Fernando Bell-Toxtle scored with his first touch of the game just seconds after the restart, converting from close range. Rob Duffy got the second for Basford when he pounced on a rebounded effort inside the six-yard box, before Ashley Grayson made it 3 for Basford midway through the second half. Defender Deon Meikle headed home a fourth for Basford late on.
Sheffield kicked off in a 3-5-2 formation with Rob Worrall and James Gregory returning to the starting XI.
Both teams started positively resulting in a fairly open first 15. Basford had efforts with striker Duffy, but nothing was troubling Matt Yates, who made his debut in goal for Sheffield after signing on loan from Derby County yesterday.
The long throw of Connor Bartle was a popular attack for Basford throughout the first half, and it almost led to a goal when the loose ball was prodded just wide from Grayson inside the six-yard box.
Yates had a busy afternoon today and was first called into action on 20 where he produced a fantastic save to his right from point blank range when Basford forward Liam Hearn shot from inside the box.
Attacking possession eluded Sheffield for the first half hour, as they found themselves defending a lot of Basford set-pieces. But Callum Harrison who replaced the injured Nyoni, brought an element of calmness to the Sheffield midfield, as his team began to interchange passes.
By the end of the first half Sheffield had Basford on the back foot. Skipper Andrew Gascoigne had a thunderous strike from 20 yards saved by the Basford keeper, who parried the ball into the path of Luis Morrison who couldn’t find his footing in time.
The half time whistle came at a bad time for Sheffield, who conceded the first goal of the game just seconds after the restart. Bell-Toxtle had only been on the pitch for a matter of seconds, but it was he who gave Basford the lead. After failing to clear the loose ball, Bell-Toxtle (46) was quickest to react and the forward hammered the ball into the roof of the net.
After the deficit Mark Shaw's Sheffield side remained calm as they had done through the first 45 and continued to take the game to Basford.
But the lead was soon doubled for Basford. An in-swinging cross met the head of Hearn who’s effort rebounded off the cross bar and left Duffy (65) with a tap-in for 2-0.
Despite a double substitution from Shaw, his side were soon behind by 3 goals and this time it was defender Grayson (72), who found himself one-on-one with Yates inside the box, and finished coolly to put the game beyond Sheffield.
With the 3 goal cushion Basford were now playing free-flowing football and almost had 4 through Hearn and Harry Wakefield attempts.
Club continued to push for a consolation goal though, and substitute Rod Orlando-Young, who also made his debut today, looked liveliest for Sheffield in the final 20 and almost fashioned a chance for fellow substitute Luke Francis.
For all of Sheffield's bravery though, the opposition held too much quality and they got their fourth late on. Grayson again involved crossed the ball from the right-hand side, his cross meeting the head of Deon Meikle (88) who finished low past Yates.
That was the final talking point of an eventful second half, where table-topping Basford continued their fantastic season in the Evo-Stik First Division South.
Basford United: Deeney, Grayson, Bartle, Thornhill, Meikle, Roma, Nash, Fenton, Duffy, Hearn, Reid. Subs: Bell-Toxtle, Wakefield, Carr, Grantham, Sampson.
Sheffield FC: M.Yates, Turner, Brown, Morrison, Lawrence, Chapman, Finlaw, Gascoigne, Worrall, Gregory, Nyoni. Subs: Harrison, J.Yates, Orlando-Young, Francis, Magee.
|Andrew Gascoigne ©||