Weston slipped to a narrow defeat against Bristol City XI on their final pre-season test before the league gets underway on August 4th.
An early goal from a Weston trialist was countered with a penalty and overturned by a bullet header to claim a win for the Robins with no response in the second-half.
The Seagulls started with a spring in their step after an impressive display against Cheltenham Town last time out, and after only 11 minutes they started where they had left off… with a goal.
There didn’t seem much on when a trialist picked up the ball on the left-hand side of the pitch, but with a swift shimmy inside and drop of the shoulder he was away and able to fire a shot on goal. The shot was on target but wasn’t caught as well as he would’ve liked, however a deflection off a Bristol City defender was enough to leave the keeper stranded and give Weston the advantage.
This advantage however, wasn’t to last long. After only three minutes being a goal ahead, City had a reply. A surging run through the heart of the Seagulls defence was halted unfairly according to the referee when a City forward went down from an outstretched Weston leg for a penalty, which was converted confidently into Luke Purnell’s net.
The pressure from Luke Williams’ side didn’t stop there, and six minutes later the contest was flipped on its head. Failure from Weston to clear the ball was capitalised on, and a cross into the box was nodded home from the City forward with the speed of the ball giving Purnell no chance.
It was an even game with chances at a premium for the remainder. Jarrad Welch tried to swing the momentum back in his side’s favour with a free-kick and a long-range effort to follow, but he saw both these attempts narrowly fall short of the mark before the half-time whistle was blown.
The second-half came and went with little clear-cut opportunities for either team.
Purnell however wanted to put on a show, and his impressive footwork and distribution gave the crowd something to cheer about.
Naby Diallo also put in a dogged display and took no prisoners as he tried to conjure an equaliser.
The trialist that opened the scoring did come close towards the end of the game when a Lionel Messi-like slaloming run put the striker in a shooting position. Unfortunately for him and Weston though, the steam had run out and his low powered shot was bread and butter for the City number one.
FT: Weston-super-Mare 1-2 Bristol City XI (Trialist C 11 – Lemonheigh Evans pen 14, Janneh 20)
Weston XI: Purnell, Trialist A (Trialist E 87), Trialist B (Trialist D HT), Cane ©, Pope, Lee (Morris-Edwards 63), Swallow, Diallo, Lucas, Welch (Llewellyn 80), Trialist C.
MOTM: Naby Diallo – Looked sharp and composed and really took the game to Bristol City. Purnell was a close runner up with impressive saves and a cool-head to match, his distribution was on top form.