Billericay Town 1 – 0 Gloucester City
Gloucester City come away the from AGP Arena with a 1-0 loss but a performance to be proud of on Non-League day away to league leaders Billericay Town.
Given the way that Billericay have been scoring for fun in recent games and leading the National League South, many Tigers fans would have been expecting a potential cricket score however they would have been heartened by the teams performance.
With new City Manager Chris Todd sat in the stands before taking over on Monday, Billericay set the tone early on with a cynical on Joe Parker 5 mins in, effectively stopping the usually fleet footed City forward.
A minute later however the home crowd were in raptures as Robinson loops a header into the net but are soon quieted as Robinson is flagged for offside. With that, Billericay started building momentum and the chances came thick and fast Robinson continuing to test Hannah in the City goal. Hannah, returning to the City side after Yates departure for a certain National League North side, was more than equal to the challenge pushing a bullet header from Robinson around the post.
Gloucester City however weathered the early onslaught by the league leaders and settled into the game. Working their way in front of the Billericay goal, Fabien Robert tried to create an effort out of nowhere and his audacious flick and volley flew over the Blues goal.
Just as City began to put some pressure on the home side, the break through was made. A mistake and failure to clear the ball saw one too many shots on the City goal, hannah keeping out the first two but unable to stop the rebound and Emmanuel shooting high into the City net.
City did not let their heads drop however and went into the break on the ascendancy.
After the break, City came out like they meant business and on 49 mins a bullet header from Ben Seymour produced an excellent save from Alan Julian in the Blues goal.
With Hannah and the City defence weathering yet another small onslaught from the Billericay attack, the hosts began to get frustrated and play the long ball. This suited City fine and as confidence grew, Webb and Green in the City dugout rang the changes bringing on Jake Mawford for Jake Jackson and Jamal Lawrence for Ben Seymour. This enabled Joe Parker to move to the centre and with Lawrence out wide creating space it enabled Fabien Robert to get on the ball and put in a cross which bounced off the top of the bar.
City now were cranking up the pressure on the hosts and were starting to believe they could get something from the game in front of a very vocal travelling support. Their desire almost paying off again as Mawford forced Julian into yet another brilliant save and then four minutes later Mawford again sent the City support wild as he cut in from the right and unleashed an effort that hit the far post from outside the box.
With City all over Billericay in the final moments, the Tigers performance did not at all reflect the deficit in points in the league and despite the loss will have given not only the travelling support but also on looking City Manager Chris Todd a lot of positive food for thought.
Gloucester City next host Bromley in the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round on Saturday 20th October at the Jubilee Stadium, Kick Off 15:00.
Gloucester City Line Up | 1. Hannah 2. Hanks 3. Hamilton 4. M. Williams 5. Avery (c) 6. Edge 7. Robert 8. Knowles 9. Jackson 10. Parker 11. Seymour Subs. Kelly, Mawford, Lawrence, Page, Green
Billericay Town Line Up | 1. Julian 2. Kizzi 3. Howells 4. Doe 5. Hayles 6. Deering (c) 7. Potter 8. O’Hara 9. Robinson 10. Emmanuel 11. Shokunbi Subs. Inman, Wells, Cunnington, Hunte, Waldren