Woking News & Mail
BSBP
3:00pm - SaturdaySat 13th OctoberOct 2012
The Laithwaite Community Stadium | Att: 1739

Woking
Woking
2 - 3

Southport
Southport

Calling all Cards fans!

Brian Caffarey
6:24pm, Thu 11th Oct 2012
Woking v Southport
3pm on Saturday 13 October 2012

Calling all Woking fans! Come on down to Kingfield on Saturday – appropriately, Non-League Day – if you possibly can and see the very attractive side which Garry Hill and Steve Thompson have now fashioned. Home and away, the Cards are playing the best football seen from a Woking side for many a year, so please give them your support!

WOKING

Not only are the Cards themselves playing some superb football, they are coming up against sides, like Cambridge United on Tuesday, who demonstrate that the standard of the Conference Premier has improved markedly in the three years we’ve been away. Tuesday night’s game was an enthralling encounter, with some excellent, passing football from both sides, fine goals and some steadfast defending.

In Kevin Betsy we have a player who’s already suggesting that he might have a similar impact on the Club’s fortunes as – dare I say it! – Clive Walker did in the great Chapple/Lippiatt era. He’s a delight to watch as his close control and sinuous movement allow him to bemuse opponents, set up team mates and score some fine goals himself. And in Lee Sawyer and Billy Knott (assuming he recovers from the injury he sustained on Tuesday) Kevin has two exciting midfield partners who can really make the Cards tick. But there are other players who’ve particularly caught the eye too, including the ever-improving Joe McNerney in central defence – surely, a target for League clubs if he continues his present form – and the pace and sharp-shooting of Bradley Bubb and Gavin McCallum up front.

No one can doubt that Garry Hill and Steve Thompson have made huge strides in 18 months in building a side that plays attractive, effective football, so let’s give them the backing they deserve!

SOUTHPORT

The Sandgrounders are in their second season back in the BSP. Like Woking, they are a part-time side working on a relatively low budget, but they showed last season that that is not an automatic bar to success in this league as they came close to making the play-offs. Manager Liam Watson is constantly unearthing new talent from lower down the non-League pyramid and, while they’ve found the going tougher so far this season, there is no doubt that they will provide another stern test for Garry Hill’s side on Saturday.

Southport currently sit in 17th place in a congested mid-table, with three points fewer than Woking in 10th spot. Away from home they’ve won at bottom-of-the-table Hyde, drawn at Alfreton and Kidderminster and lost at Cambridge, Newport, Luton and Barrow. The defeat at Holker Street on Tuesday was particularly hard to take since Southport were comfortably in control at 2-0 up before allowing their hosts to score three times in the final 20 minutes.

Southport have a few injury problems, with Michael Bakare, Chris Almond and Karl Ledsham all expected to miss the game. Striker Darren Stephenson has been recalled from his loan at Chorley as a result. Godfrey Poku, formerly with Luton, is the busy workhorse in midfield, with defender (and captain) Simon Grand dangerous at set pieces and the highly-rated Shaun Walley lively up front.

ADMISSION PRICES

Adults £15
Over 65s/Students £10
U16s £5

MATCHDAY PROGRAMME

Saturday’s 56-page programme marks Non-League Day with a fine piece by Phil Batts in which he recounts the roundabout route he took to becoming a Cardinals fan and urges people to support their local football team. The programme also includes an interesting interview with midfield maestro Lee Sawyer – yes, he gets asked about his collection of yellow cards! There’s also an ‘opposing fan’ view from a long-time Southport supporter plus all the news from the BSP, match reports, previews, great action photos and much more. If you can’t get to the game, you can order a copy from the Club Shop on shop@wokingfc.co.uk

BOOST THE BUDGET

The Cards Trust will be holding a bucket collection to support its important Boost the Budget initiative, which is contributing at least £30k to Garry’s playing budget this year through the purchase of shares in the Club. Please give as generously as you can.

NEXT GAME

Don’t forget that the Cards are at home to Ebbsfleet in the 4th Qualifying Round of the FA Cup the following Saturday (20 October), with the winning side going into the hat with League 1 and 2 clubs in the First Round Proper. Come and cheer the Cards on to what we hope will be another famous FA Cup adventure!

Come on, you Cards!

P.S. WFC shareholders are reminded that the Club’s AGM is on Monday 15 October at 8pm. Please note that this meeting is open only to those who hold shares in the Club.

10 man Southport stun sloppy Woking

Glen Harrington
10:56pm, Sat 13th Oct 2012
Woking 2 Southport 3
Blue Square Premier
13th October 2012


Defensive errors proved costly again for Woking, as a late mistake from Brett Johnson allowed Southport to take all three points from their trip to Kingfield.

The Cards had dominated the game’s early stages and deservedly took the lead through Kevin Betsy, after Gavin McCallum found his fellow winger free at the back post.

A tireless and hard-working Southport worked their way slowly back into the game, equalising through Andrew Parry’s effort just before half time and then, despite Liam Willis seeing red shortly after the interval, taking the lead through Chris Lynch’s back-post tap in.

Gavin McCallum capitalised on a goal mouth scramble to draw the home side level, only for Johnson’s under-hit back-pass to set Darren Stephenson through on goal soon after. Joe McNerney’s last ditch tackle sent the Sandgrounders striker sprawling to the floor and gave away the decisive penalty. McNerney saw red, and Chris Lever made no mistake with his spot kick.

Before the game, there was an unmistakable sense of optimism around Kingfield, with the Cards excellent mid-week win over Cambridge having promoted them to the league table’s top ten. Garry Hill made one change from Tuesday’s success, with the injured Billy Knott making way for Dean Sinclair. Aaron Howe, returning from suspension, had to be content with a place on the bench.

Despite the absence of the creative Knott, Woking looked far too good for Southport in the early stages – Bradley Bubb’s cushioned header for McCallum producing the game’s first half-chance, the Cards forward hitting his shot straight at visiting keeper Tony McMillan.

It came as little surprise when the home side deservedly took the lead ten minutes in, Betsy skilfully manoeuvring down the right hand flank and whipping a dangerous ball across the box. McCallum picked up possession at the back post and with the angle too tight to shoot, returned a similarly dangerous ball back into the six yard box, where the recently arrived Betsy was on hand to turn in.

Woking continued to have the better of the play as the first half progressed, but going behind had clearly provoked a reaction from the visitors, who looked to have finally woken up – Sam Beasant on hand to smartly stop a deflected Stephenson shot.

Liam Watson’s side grew steadily into the game, maintaining possession well and penning the Cards in their own half for long periods. Eventually they got their equaliser, with Russell Benjamin first driving into the Woking half, and then squaring for Parry, whose low shot bulleted into the bottom right hand corner of the net.

Half-time: Woking 1 Southport 1

Just five minutes after the interval, Southport were down to ten men – Willis demonstrating a little too aggressively for the referee’s liking after conceding a foul, and falling victim to a second yellow card.

Undeterred, the Sandgrounders were ahead before the hour mark, Betsy’s unfortunately angled flick on from Shaun Whalley’s corner ushering the ball perfectly into the path of Lynch, who had the simplest of tasks to tap home.

With their play growing increasingly desperate and disjointed, the Cards brought on Loick Pires and Brett Williams to try and change their fortunes, with Sinclair and Mike Cestor the men replaced.

Ultimately, it was a slice of luck that brought Woking back level, with Mark Ricketts’ chipped cross from the right hand side initially causing havoc in the Southport penalty area. Red shirts flooded into the box, with both Lee Sawyer and Williams seeing shots blocked. Thankfully, McCallum was able to force the ball over the line.

Unfortunately for the Cards, their earlier substitutions meant they were playing with just three (Ricketts, McNerney and Johnson) in defence. Although they were still eager to go on and win the game against their shorthanded opponents, they were still vulnerable to the pace of Stephenson, who was by now acting as the visitor’s lone striker.

But Woking players, staff and fans will want to forget the fashion of the winning goal in a hurry. Under heavy pressure, Johnson desperately tried to turn the ball back towards Beasant. However, he only succeeded in setting Stephenson clean through on goal.

The Southport striker dallied horribly as the Cards keeper hurried out to narrow the angle, allowing McNerney time to arrive on the scene, but the Woking defender could only haul Stephenson to the ground. Mr Hopkins had no option but to reduce a second side to ten men and point to the spot.

Lever confidently sent Beasant the wrong way with his coolly taken penalty, rolling the ball neatly into the bottom right hand corner of the net.

Woking tried in vain to comeback a second time – both Johnson and Williams forcing saves from McMillan – but Southport held on.

The Cards will now be allowed a two week break from Blue Square Premier duties, with next week’s fixture being an FA Cup tie. Woking will be hosting Ebbsfleet United in the fourth qualifying round. Our next league game will be away at league leader’s Newport County on the 27th October.

Woking: Sam Beasant, Mark Ricketts, Mike Cestor (Brett Williams 69), Joe McNerney, Brett Johnson, Jack Parkinson, Dean Sinclair (Loick Pires 56), Lee Sawyer, Kevin Betsy, Bradley Bubb, Gavin McCallum

Unused Subs: Aaron Howe, Adam Doyle, George Frith

Goal(s): Betsy 11, McCallum 74

Booked: Parkinson 70, Bubb 77

Sent-off: McNerney 81

Southport: Tony McMillan, Chris Lever, Simon Grand, Chris Lynch, Liam Willis, Andrew Parry, Shaun Whalley, Russell Benjamin, Godfrey Poku, James Ellison (Charlie Joyce 53), Darren Stephenson (Steven Tames 90)

Unused Subs: Zac Hibbert, Alan Moogan, Chris Almond

Goal(s): Parry 40, Lynch 56, Lever 82 (pen)

Booked: Willis 30 & 49, Joyce 56, Whalley 62, Lynch 87

Sent-off: Willis 49

MOTM: Lee Sawyer (pictured) – His usual busy self, full of running and the creative spark behind the majority of Woking’s good play.

Attendance: 1,739
WOKING LINEUP
18Sam Beasant
4Mark Ricketts
3Mike Cestor ('69)
5Joe McNerney
16Brett Johnson
8Jack Parkinson
17Dean Sinclair ('57)
15Lee Sawyer
11Kevin Betsy
9Bradley Bubb
19Gavin McCallum
BENCH
1Aaron Howe
6Adam Doyle
22George Frith
7Loick Pires ('57)
14Brett Williams ('69)
Southport LINEUP
1Tony McMillan
17Chris Lynch
3Chris Lever
5Andy Parry
6Simon Grand
7Shaun Whalley
22Godfrey Poku
16Alan Moogan
23Liam Willis
9James Ellison ('53)
21Darren Stephenson ('90)
BENCH
13Zac Hibbert
12Russell Benjamin
11Chris Almond
20Charlie Joyce ('53)
18Steven Tames ('90)

Woking 2-3 Southport (Garry Hill Interview)

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