WATCH OUT, Boston United! Weymouth sounded out a warning to their away opponents in the FA Trophy next Saturday with this dominating Alliance Premier League victory.
While Boston were crashing 5-2 on their own ground to Weymouth’s keen rivals for league honours, Altrincham – watched by the Terras’ manager Stuart Morgan – the Dorset club were hitting six goals and setting a new record in retaining the top spot in the Alliance League.
Weymouth became the first team to win by a six-goal margin in the new competition – and now Boston United must be worried.
Admittedly, Weymouth’s best-of-the-season victory came against the bottom team in the league, but, as the man left in charge, John Clarke, told me: “These teams have to be beaten, and not many teams have given them such a hiding as us.”
Clarke commented: “It was too easy, although towards the end we did one or two things which were uncharacteristic – things which we hope will not happen next week. But I couldn’t have asked for much better from the lads.”
Weymouth missed numerous chances, including a penalty – Kevin Dove sending a 30th minute spot kick against the bar – but Anniello Iannone (2), Tommy Paterson (2), Graham Roberts and Peter Johnson shared out the six goals, three coming in each half.
Poor Redditch, who are the fourth club beaten twice by the Terras this season, started off on the receiving end of an attacking storm – but survived for 16 minutes.
Dove slammed a shot against the bar in the fourth minute, Paterson and Graham Roberts should have scored, and the referee refused to allow Weymouth a goal when Johnson netted from a Paterson cross.
The goalkeeper Dave Walker, who saved Redditch often during this one-sided game, brilliantly dived to turn aside a crashing angled drive from Paterson.
In the 16th minute, however, Paterson miskicked in the goalmouth, and the ball was deflected by a defender to Iannone, who could hardly fail to score from close-range.
After this, the game was simply in no doubt and, basking in a lot of sunshine, the fans settled back to enjoy a game in which the Terras remained right on top.
In the next quarter of an hour, I thought Weymouth might have totted up a near cricket score.
They made it 2-0 with a superbly headed goal by Roberts from a quickly taken Jimmy McCafferty free-kick.
Iannone set up a chance for Dove, but Walker saved bravely at point-blank range. Then Dove sent the ball against the bar after Johnson was fouled and the referee awarded a penalty.
But Paterson put Weymouth three up right on the interval, Dove leaving a right-wing cross and Weymouth’s top scorer running the ball into the net on the far post.
The second-half was nearly all Weymouth’s with Paterson scoring his 20th goal of the season with a glorious shot clear of a Redditch defence wall after accepting the ball from a free-kick.
A brilliant save at full-stretch by Walker denied Paterson his hat-trick from a well-taken header, but in the 62nd minute Paterson provided the pass from which Johnson sidefooted the Terras’ fifth goal.
Walked punched one-handed over his bar from a rasping Roberts’ shot, before Iannone ran at the Redditch defence in typical fashion,
He beat three players before blasting an unstoppable shot in the net.
But then, in the last minute, came the save of the match – surprisingly at Weymouth’s end!
Keith Barnes, Redditch’s most entertaining attacker, hit a free-kick on the volley – and Steve Chalk saved brilliantly, diving to turn the ball over his bar from about six yards in one-handed fashion.
Weymouth: Chalk, Lawrence, Arnold, Dyer, Merrick, Roberts, McCafferty, Paterson, Iannone, Dove, Johnson