Travel worn Gloucester’s already threadbare squad took another hit in a 2-0 defeat to play-off hopefuls Gainsborough Trinity.\r\n\r\nAfter clocking up more than 2,000 miles in the last month, picking up injuries and suspensions on the way the loss of Adam Mann (concussion) Matt Lock (groin) and Theo Lewis (calf) was a further blow.\r\n\r\nThe visitors arrived late at the ground but were quick off the mark, winning an early corner. Ryan Kendall put the City back four under pressure with a darting run, only to see his cross blocked by Mike Green. Tom Hamblin’s robust challenge stopped another attack from Kendall on seven minutes.\r\n\r\nCity, missing both Darren Edwards (suspended) and Will Morford (work commitments), started with a young pair of strikes, Scott Wilson earning his first start, alongside Theo Lewis.\r\n\r\nWilson showed strength and composure in the first half, standing up to Trinity’s experienced back line and linking up well with Mann on the wing.\r\n\r\nMann was clattered on the head ten minutes in, earning City a free kick on the edge of the box, Darren Mullings fired a fair shot over the wall only to see it cleared straight out.\r\n\r\nDarren Stamp’s glancing header flew over the bar on 15 minutes as Trinity’s pacey, passing game dominated. Jamie Yates pulled the strings in midfield, showing speed and skill to lead each of the visitors’ wave of attacks.\r\n\r\nWilson won a City corner at the other end on 23 minutes, with Lock’s direct ball frustratingly headed wide of the post.\r\n\r\nMann picked up a second knock to the head on the half hour mark and left the pitch, looking dazed, minutes later, replaced by Rose.\r\n\r\nLewis Carey was forced into action to save a snapshot from Yates on 44 minutes after a mistake from Harris.\r\n\r\nCity missed the chance to go ahead just before the break with a free kick, awarded for a foul on Lewis. Lock’s ball in being headed just over the bar by Rose.\r\n\r\nWith Lock struggling with a groin injury he made way for George Lloyd at half time, forcing a reshuffle with Mullings joining Wilson upfront, Lewis moving to the wing and Lloyd slotting in on the right.\r\n\r\nGainsborough showed no sign of tiredness and again Yates proved to be a handful. On 55 minutes his mazy run down the right flank took him to the edge of the box, he turn and whipped in a perfectly weighted cross.\r\n\r\nStamp collected the ball with his head, looking at first as if he’d mistimed it, but the looping header flew over a fully stretched Carey to put Trinity ahead.\r\n\r\nWith Lock off, David Bird, in his home debut, took over set pieces, firing in a free kick and a corner. Mullings, revelling, in his cameo as a striker fired a shot towards goal on the hour mark on the hour mark.\r\n\r\nLewis was replaced by Mustoe on 66 minutes, forcing another reshuffle, Green moving to left back and Harris onto the wing in a bid to curb the rampant Yates.\r\n\r\nBut it was the Trinity number 8 who set up the second goal on 69 minutes, fired past Carey by Kendall, who had been a threat since the first few minutes.\r\n\r\nThe City back line continued to face sustained pressure in the final phase of the game with all four putting in decisive challenges to stop Trinity adding a third.\r\n\r\nWith Webb and Edwards still suspended, Mann, Lock and Lewis joining the other Mike Green and Steve Davies on the injury list the City bench looked bare by the end of the game.\r\n\r\nCity now welcome Trinity’s play-off chasing rivals Boston United to Whaddon Road on Saturday.\r\n\r\n\r\nGloucester City; Carey, Harris, Green, Coupe, Hamblin, Bird, Lock (Lloyd 46) Mullings, Lewis (Mustoe 66) Wilson, Mann (Rose 30)\r\n\r\nGainsborough Trinity: White, Roma, Sandwith, Waterfoll, Boyce, Clarke (Leary 81) D’Laryea, Yates, Kendall (Godden 75) Stamp (Connor 84) Holden. Subs: Mettam, Williams\r\n\r\nGoals: Stamp 55, Kendall 69\r\n\r\nReferee: Simon Knapp (Bristol)\r\n\r\nStar man: Scott Wilson
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