Forwards all on song for Yarmouth

Great Yarmouth Town 4, Debenham LC 0

A first clean sheet for 15 games, and only the second of the season, was one of several Bloaters’ highlights of this match against the second-last visitors from Suffolk who had shipped a boat-load of goals in recent games.

Twin strikers Gavin Norman and Jake Reed were both on the score sheet, as was Scott Woodcock, also enjoying a magnificent spell of late, writes Gerry Brown.

The whole team since the turn of the year seem to have turned a corner, and along with the first home league wins have played some exciting attacking football.

Gareth Palmer came in for the unfortunate Glen Spooner, and compared to the team that almost got something at Plantation Park midweek Fernando Vide was preferred to Olly McCarthy who also had to be content with a seat on the bench. Johnny Miller was back in the squad having recovered from his ankle injury, and young Jake Jessup, deputised in goal for the suspended Michael Hilton.

Debenham had the ball in the Yarmouth net after only five minutes but were offside.

Five minutes later Yarmouth moved ahead and never looked back.

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Jake Reed shot from a narrow angle, keeper Louis Johnson blocked the attempt but the ball fell kindly for Norman to sweep home. Given the captain’s armband for the first time after some recent stirring displays, Norman did not disappoint.

Yarmouth were creating attacking opportunities with breathtaking regularity.

The second goal in the 23rd minute was started by Joe Bell and finished by Reed, with a little assistance from Johnson.

Full-back Bell’s pass down the left found Reed in space and when the striker took the ball to the by-line, Debenham right-back Chris Sadler had no answer to Reed’s deft footwork and Johnson was unable to prevent an angled shot squirming under his late dive.

The third goal was not long delayed as Vide out on the right sent a ball to the near post and Reed slipped in unnoticed to beat Johnson again from close in after 39 minutes.

Two minutes later, Dominic Smith and Vide combined for the latter’s shot to hit a post with Smith hitting the rebound over the bar.

Yarmouth continued to create opportunities freely in the second half, Norman, Reed and Chris Duffy all being in with a shout before the hour was up.

Debenham’s best effort of the half came in the 79th minute with Gedny’s shot going just wide.

Yarmouth came good again in the last minute of the regular 90 when Reed supplied Woodcock, who raced down the left and into the box to stroke the ball past Johnson.

Paul Tong was very impressed with Gavin Norman in his new role of captain: “Gav led the line tremendously, with Woody and Jake up front.

“It’s great all the forwards are on song at once, Gavin’s a great foil for Reedy but is also scoring himself, as is Scott. Reedy is magnificent, I love him to bits. He’s one of the best players that I personally have worked with.

“He’s awesome and the club is indebted to his commitment and desire, and also that of Dom and Joe Bell.”

With Olly Savage departed to Wroxham on the Friday night, Bell came into the left-back position. “Joe hasn’t played a full 90 minutes for, I should think, getting on for 12 months and he played that role like he played it all season.

“I was gutted to lose Olly Savage to Wroxham but he was made an unbelievable offer and I can only wish him well. However, at the back Gareth Palmer made a big difference.

“It was a hard decision today to leave out Glen Spooner who has been doing well and Olly McCarthy but their day will come, like Dom, Ross Catchpole and Jake who have come through and are now establishing themselves as senior players.”

Jake Jessup did not put a foot wrong in goal: “I sometimes give Archie a hard time, but he became a man today. To be honest, he’s going to have a lot of ups and downs as a youngster but he’s got the potential.

“Well pleased with the result and overall team performance and we kept a clean sheet which has got to be the first for a long, long while. But it all means three home wins this year and that’s vital.

“But credit to everybody today. Let’s get behind the club and let’s hope we can achieve our goal. I’m positive we can. I’ve got complete faith in my players.”

Yarmouth: J Jessup, L Fell, J Bell, G Palmer, C Duffy, R Catchpole, F Vide, D Smith, G Norman, J Reed, S Woodcock. Subs: G Spooner, O McCarthy, J Miller (Vide 65). Attendance: 71.