Resurgence continues despite red
PUBLISHED: 08:59 06 January 2015 | UPDATED: 09:13 06 January 2015
WESTON ended 2014 on a high as a goal in either half saw them register their third league win from four games at Hayes and Yeading on December 28.
With an unexpected rest over the Christmas period, following the postponement of their Boxing Day clash with Bath City, the Seagulls made one change from the side which won at Ebbsfleet, with Jamie Edge replacing the injured Kane Ingram.
The visitors started in the ascend-ency, buoyed by their recent form, with Dayle Grubb, Olly Watkins, Jacob Cane and Matt Jay all forcing good saves from home keeper Grant Smith.
All their play needed was a goal, but it was the home side who took the lead against the run of play just shy of the 20-minute mark, former Brentford striker Nathan Elder poking in after a goalmouth scramble.
The strike appeared to kill the game for a period, despite some smart passing play from both sides, but Weston’s next meaningful effort found the equaliser, when Jake Llewellyn, Watkins and Jay combined to feed Joe McLennan, who finished with aplomb five minutes before the break.
If the first half was easy on the eye, the second was much the opposite, with chances a rarity as the quality of passing declined.
In a rare moment of quality, how-ever, Weston found their second goal just after the hour, as Grubb won possession on the right wing and cut through the home defence with ease before slotting the ball past Smith.
With the wind in their sails and looking comfortable, Weston were dealt a blow 11 minutes later as Grubb turned from hero to villain, retaliating after a questionable challenge and leaving referee Steven Plane with little option than to dismiss the winger.
The pressure of finding an equaliser appeared to affect Hayes in the dying minutes with a flurry of yellow cards shown to the home side, before Matty Harriott was dismissed for a second bookable offence with five minutes to go, as the Seagulls saw out a hard-earned win in Kent.
Caretaker manager Ryan Northmore said he was confident Weston would recover despite their early setback, and paid tribute to his players after picking up 10 points from their last four games.
He said: “I felt we were dominating possession and pressing Hayes in and around the box. We had plenty of early shots and to concede was a brief disappointment, but it didn’t shake us particularly.
“We knew that if we continued to play the way we were, we would get back into the game.”
Northmore has been in charge at the Woodspring Stadium since November 22, following the departure of Mickey Bell, but confirmed he will not be seeking the job full-time.
He said: “The structure of the club is such that it doesn’t rely on one person, and my role has always been within the board.
“We are not in any rush; a head coach needs to work in a way which suits our club, and we work differently with regards to most other clubs. It might take a little while to find the person or it might be some-one from within the squad, but for the moment we are just leaving our options open.”