Optimism at Clipbush Park
Fakenham Town supporters need pay no heed to the weekend scoreline at Whitton United, a 7-1 defeat ahead of two home games for the Ghosts at Clipbush Park, against Stowmarket on Saturday (3pm) and Diss Town on Tuesday (7.
Fakenham Town supporters need pay no heed to the weekend scoreline at Whitton United, a 7-1 defeat ahead of two home games for the Ghosts at Clipbush Park, against Stowmarket on Saturday (3pm) and Diss Town on Tuesday (7.45).
At Whitton's sloping KVG ground the Ghosts, missing key players Adam Woodhouse and Ben Darby, gave away two own goals in the first 25 minutes, lost Kevin Whitred early with a badly gashed eye, had keeper Daniel Stockdale stretchered off with 15 minutes to go and at 4-2 down saw three late goals scrambled past stand-in keeper Nick Haynes. With substitute resources already used up, Fakenham finished with 10 men.
“We're not down-hearted,” said joint manager Stuart Woodhouse on Monday. “That result was not a reflection on the way we have played in the last five or six weeks. We will pick ourselves up and carry on.”
It is hoped teenage keeper Stockdale will be fit for Saturday. He dislocated his left knee in the 75th minute and was in considerable pain before being stretchered off. It clicked back in the dressing room, but he was taken to hospital for a precautionary X-ray.
The Ghosts, who suffered a 7-1 home defeat by United earlier in the season, matched their hosts for long periods. But an attempted cushioned header back to his keeper by Martin Fenwick flashed into his own net after 15 minutes.
And 10 minutes later there was more bad luck for the Ghosts when a low free-kick from the right deflected off Ian Raisbury's toes to wrong-foot Stockdale and put United 2-0 up.
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James Bamford had seen a shot from the edge of the area tipped round a post in the 22nd minute and in the 38th minute Fakenham claims for a penalty were turned down as John Connelly, on for Whitred, saw a goal-bound effort deflect off a defender's back to safety. In the 40th minute Mark Critten cleared a Whitton shot off the line.
Fakenham started the second half with Connelly's low cross from the right being neatly converted by Julian Delicata, who later saw a wind-assisted effort drift just off target. A Bamford free-kick was not far over the top.
But two quick strikes by a fluid Whitton attack put them 4-1 up, Ronaldo Wright and Chris Williams on target. Then came Stockdale's injury, and although Haynes made one good stop he was beaten three times as nine players tired in front of him.
Fakenham: Stockdale, Bacon, Raisbury, Fenwick, Garrod, Whitred (Connelley), Bamford, Bryant, Haynes, Delicata, Critten. (Att 44.)
Fakenham Town Reserves lost 8-1 at home to Kirkley & Pakefield Reserves, Daley Palmer notching six goals in the Anglian Combination Division One match at Clipbush Park.