Barnstaple Town v Evesham United: Barum unable to make it back-to-back wins in Evo-Stik League South West

Barnstaple Town were unable to make it back-to-back wins in Evo-Stik League South West this afternoon (Saturday).

After last weekend’s win, Barum were brought back down to earth with a 2-0 defeat to Evesham United at Mill Road.

Matt Liddiard gave the visitors the lead after half an hour with a looping header.

Adam Mann doubled the Robins’ lead with six minutes of the 90 remaining after capitalising on a defensive mix-up.

With conditions dictating the game on a heavy, slippery pitch, neither side was able to create too many chances.

Barnstaple started well, putting Evesham under plenty of pressure in the opening exchanges, but after three corners in towards Chris Ibbeson and a couple of searching free kicks, they were unable to find a reward.

The visitors settled and had joy down the right flank, Liddiard linking up well with Linden Dovey and Jordan Bryan to create opportunities for the Robins.

First Liddiard’s flick on from a Dovey throw saw Mann volley just wide. Minutes later Liddiard hit struck the crossbar with a sliding effort.

He would eventually give the visitors the lead on 30 minutes, meeting a long ball to put a looping header over Rob Holmes and into the waiting goal.

With the pitch breaking up, the second half became something of a slog in the middle of the park. Goerge Nancekivell worked tirelessly for Barnstaple in the middle albeit without much reward.

Evesham began putting pressure on the Barum defence. Mann outmuscled Booth to find some space in the penalty area and fire past Holmes, but his shot was met by Jordan Walton before it could reach the goal.

Holmes did well not to be beaten two minutes later, instead producing a brilliant stop when Lewis Binns’ deflected volley could easily have wrong-footed him.

Harry Stevens was introduced to partner Billy Hopcroft up front, the latter had been a lonely figure until then, with his efforts all too often cut short by the linesman’s flag, and the change allowed Barum to play a bit more positively.

But their chances of an equaliser were dashed with six minutes remaining by Mann.

The striker got in between Holmes and Austen Booth to meet Aysa Corrick’s long ball and prodded the ball past them, leaving him with nothing more but to fire into the empty goal. Calls for handball from the Barnstaple players went unanswered by referee Lee Roberts.

Holmes limited the damage for the visitors in the dying minutes, producing two fine saves to keep the score at 2-0.

Barnstaple Town: Holmes, Ibbeson (Stevens 67), Heeney, Booth, Cooper, Radford (Walton 57), Nancekivell, Hopcroft, Booth (Reay 80), Harper-Penman. Subs not used: Mitchell, Barker.

Evesham United: Sawyer, Dovey, Bennett, Turley, Lewis, Liddiard (Hancock 87), Bryan, Haskayne, Brown (Corrick 77), Mann, Binns (Francis 67), Subs not used: Dunbar, Wellon.

Attendance: 157

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