By Elliot Yates
Gloucester City kicked off their 22/23 campaign with a 3-0 win against Southern League side Bishops Cleeve at Kayte Lane with goals from two trialists and Matt McClure giving City the perfect start to the season.
The first 15 minutes of the match saw Lee Mansell’s side trying to suss the opposition out with spells of possession but no real chances.
City opened the scoring inside 19 minutes after a marauding run from Trialist B to outpace his marker facing the Cleeve goalkeeper one-on-one. His initial shot was saved but he gathered the ball back inside the penalty area to set up Trialist A for a simple tap in.
The opposition came close to equalising eight minutes later when a sweetly struck right footed volley from the Cleeve forward went agonisingly wide giving City a slight scare going into the first drinks break.
Seconds before half time Trialist B followed up from his earlier assist with a sensational strike to put Gloucester City two up just before half time. A powerful drive from 25 yards out arrowed into the top left corner to give City a comfortable advantage going into the second half in what was the final cameo for the trialist as City changed their entire team for the next half.
The second period saw City find their stride in the opening few minutes, just like they did in the first half. Club captain Kevin Dawson was pulling the strings in the midfield and the second batch of trialists were all impressing.
On 73 minutes new signing Tre Mitford showed the City fans a glimpse of his potential, testing the Cleeve goalkeeper from 25 yards out and forcing him into a good save as he stretched to keep the ball out of the top right corner.
City grabbed a third seven minutes later after a swift counterattack led to a fine finish from Matt McClure. The forward was wide open on the left-hand side and a left footed finish into the opposite corner sealed a 3-0 win for City in their first game of the new season.
A dominant display from Gloucester City against lower league opposition with plenty of positives to take away from the prospect of the trialists, a clean sheet and looking dangerous going forward.
City’s attention turns to their next friendly against Swindon Supermarine on the 12th July away from home.