All eyes were on a sun soaked Saw Mills yesterday as our pre-season was kicked off with a charity match that saw a Longlevens XI run out 6-2 against a very game E.G. Carter XI.
The Levens side lead by Richard Workman and current first team player/assistant manager Craig Martin started and their tactics were clear, playing it out from the back.
The E.G. Carter side lead by Severn Sport’s own Ryan Butler and Longlevens’ current first team manager Mark Moore pressed high and it allowed for a fairly open start, with both sides looking capable going forward.
E.G. Carter boasted first team players Ash Wintle and Adam Phillips who added experience up front whilst Gloucester City u18s keeper Kane Winman provided stability in between the sticks.
Severn Sport’s Kelsey De Maria started in the centre of midfield for the E.G. Carter side and did well at holding his position, not so well at keeping possession though!
Longlevens took the lead through Mark Cornell of Cornell and Company after he diverted a low cross into the net. Craig Martin soon made it two with a well taken one on one, leaving Winman no chance.
Just when it looked like the game would become a one-sided affair neat play from E.G. Carter saw Wintle bundled over in the box. The Longlevens first team keeper stepped up to reduce the deficit.
Two quickfire goals were exchanged right on half time including a well taken Lee Allen goal leaving the Longlevens side 3-2 up going into the second half.
During the second half player/manager of the Longlevens side Richard Workman made a couple of shocking tackles and was ultimately told to hook himself or face disciplinary action….disgusting really the way he tripped Adam Phillips, could have injured him!
As the second half wore on the heat became intense and the E.G. Carter side went for it. Knowing they had nothing to lose they went three at the back (how continental!) and with Severn Sport’s Tyrell Foster at right full back they set out to grab a deserved equaliser.
What transpired was an open defence that saw Longlevens break a number of times in the final few minutes and added gloss to the scoreline with three late goals. Cornell scored his second (I believe) before Paul Walsh and Mike Rinaldi capped off the scoring to give Longlevens a flattering 4-goal advantage.
The game was played in the right spirit and in such testing conditions everyone put a shift in and I am proud of all of the E.G. Carter side. We came, we gave it a go and gave it our all. I’m happy with that.
Afterwards it was back to the Longlevens clubhouse for food, World Cup on the telly and a charity raffle that saw Tyrell win a case of Corona…drink responsibly kids!
It has to be said the two highlights of the raffle were Longlevens forward Shaun O’Connor’s over the moon celebrational fist pump at winning what I think was a bath set and when a winning ticket for ex-Longlevens and now Bishops Cleeve striker Brad Martin, he was met with a chorus of boos. Non-league football is amazing.
A big thank you has to go to E.G. Carter and Longlevens for not just allowing us to be apart of the event but in their great job of hosting the event. It was a fun day had by all and it was the perfect way for us to kick off our 2018/19 coverage for the season. Also a big thanks to Jam Foster for coming along on the day to take photos for Severn Sport.