Result: Fawley 1-2 Blackfield & Langley
Goalscorers: Ben Murphy / Liam Robinson & Dylan Knight
Attendance: Approx 55
1. Page, 2. Keating, 3. Buckthorpe, 4. Earl, 5. Macey, 6. Sayce, 7. Bolton, 8. Hartigan, 9. Murphy, 10. Bradley, 11. Lilley - Subs: 12. Hawkins, 14. Southwick, 15. Macleod, 16. Grant, 17. Munday
Fawley played their second pre-season friendly last night against neighbours Blackfield & Langley at The Waterside Club. The newly promoted Southern League side won the Wessex Premier Division last season and have been promoted to the Southern League, they proved too strong in the end running out 2-1 winners.
Both teams started brightly and with plenty of energy, but there was an early injury scare for Oiler Mark Lilley after a late challenge on his knee saw him receive treatment. Blackfield didn't allow Fawley much time on the ball and closed down all over the pitch, despite this The OIlers did manage to string together some nice stuff and play through the thirds.
Blackfield created the best opening chances, some dangerous crosses and successions of corners. Jonathan Page was forced into a double save midway through the half from close range, otherwise the Fawley back four and midfield were very resolute and proving difficult to break down.
Elliot Earl had the best chance to open the scoring, a scramble in the Blackfield penalty area and the ball eventually fell to Earl from close range, forcing Lewis Noice into an excellent reaction save.
It was Blackfield who took the lead just before half time, a quick throwing caught the oilers defence off guard. The ball was played into Liam Robinson who fired from the edge of the box, took a deflection and lobbed keeper Jonathan Page at the far post.
Both sides made changes around 5 minutes into the second half. A familiar face of Dylan Knight coming on for Blackfield & Langley. Peter Southwick who impressed last week for Fawley came on for the injured Mark Lilley.
It became apparent that Fawley keeper Jonathan Page was struggling with an heel injury and was very limited on his movement, during the rush to get Lee Burch ready to replace him, Blackfield doubled their lead, Dylan Knight tapping in a cross from close range.
Lee Burch replaced the injured Jonathan Page and young Michael Macleod replaced Buckthorpe.
Fawley were chasing a 2-0 deficit with 55 minutes on the clock, but were still patient on and off the ball and it paid off. Ben Murphy had been disciplined all game with his positioning waiting for the right moments to press and this time he dispossessed the Blackfield defender, getting in on goal, rounding the keeper and slotting home.
Nick Grant and Tom Munday both came on, both offering pace and fresh legs in attack. Both linked up nicely on a counter attack within minutes, Tom Munday eventually being fouled in the box and the referee awarding a penalty. Declan Hartigan stepped up, but his effort was saved by Lewis Noice.
Matt Hawkins came on for the last 20 minutes and replaced Dane Sayce.
Fawley pressed for an equalizer, the impressive Ollie Bradley as always finding extra energy late on to drive Fawley forward, his pace and delivery from wide areas kept Blackfield busy. However Blackfield were testing Lee Burch who had to make a few saves and were very lively in the wide areas.
The game finished 2-1 to Blackfield, the away side will be happy with the workout and satisfied with the good test Fawley offered on the night. Injuries to Mark Lilley and Jonathan Page will have to be assessed and we hope both are nothing serious.
Next up is Colden Common on Monday night at The Waterside Club.