Lacklustre Weymouth foiled by Linnets
WEYMOUTH and King’s Lynn were left to settle for a share of the spoils at the Bob Lucas Stadium, as they played out a goalless draw which failed to capture the imagination.
A point apiece was probably a reflection of the contest as a whole with both sides spurning decent opportunities to take the game by the scruff of the neck.
A disappointing moment for the home side came in the second half when playmaker Chris Shephard, who has struggled with injuries over the last couple of seasons, was forced off once more after being on the end of a crunching challenge.
The Terras made three changes from the side that was held at Kings Langley on Saturday.
Jason Matthews deemed himself fit enough to start, he replaced Dan Thomas in goal after the latter was sent off at the weekend. Thomas did not even make the bench.
With Ben Thomson suspended there was also a return from the start for striker Sam Jordan, who partnered Stuart Fleetwood in attack. Charlie Davis was also recalled in midfield in place of Billy Lowes.
The visitors’ plans for the encounter were hindered before a ball was even kicked as their 500-mile round trip took even longer than expected, meaning kick-off was delayed 10 minutes.
The game may have been late starting, but Weymouth were far from sluggish in the opening exchanges.
On three minutes, some slick footwork from Shephard allowed him to find Fleetwood inside the box, he cut it back to Jordan, whose strike was well saved by the feet of keeper Alex Street.
At the other end, a free-kick was given away in a dangerous area by Jake Wannell, and the resulting free-kick, fizzed in by Lynn’s Michael Clunan, was headed inches wide by a Terras’ defender.
Jordan looked lively during the opening 15 minutes but the home defence had no problem in getting stuck into him.
He was upended by a late challenge by Dan Quigley, which earned the visiting defender a caution, Shephard’s free-kick was blocked.
Jordan then proceeded to break the offside trap but Street was rapidly off his line to put the through ball into row-z. That came shortly after a header from Wannell was eventually gathered by the Lynn stopper.
The Terras were controlling possession and putting pressure on the Linnets’ backline but it was the visitors who had a great chance to go ahead 12 minutes before the break.
A ball played from the left by Ryan Hawkins on the counter found Toby Hilliard, who failed to make a good enough contact from six yards out.
Five minutes later, some confusion in the Terras’ backline allowed Shaun McWilliams to square to Hawkins, whose shot was stabbed away by Wannell.
And with almost the final kick of the first half, Fleetwood ran in on goal and rattled the bar with a powerful effort, but was flagged offside.
Following the break, a foul from Weymouth’s Stephane Zubar allowed Clunan to line up a free-kick from 25 yards out, but his curling effort was comfortably gathered by Matthews. Shephard let fly at the other end and saw his half-volley whistle just wide.
On the hour mark, the Terras were within inches of going behind.
Initially, Calvin Brooks was caught on the right-hand side of the box and some manic defending denied Hawkins from breaking the deadlock. Soon after, a dangerous delivery drilled across goal had Zubar sliding in to clear but he only just managed to divert it away from his own net.
That sparked a spell where Lynn were on top and the Terras moved to the bench in a bid to change things up. Yetton made his return in place of Jordan, Aaron Rodriguez also came on for Jordan Copp.
With the game becoming flat as a contest, Weymouth were then dealt a cruel injury blow to playmaker Shephard.
He was on the end of a fierce challenge from Lynn’s Sam Gaughran, and had to be helped off. Conor Jevon was brought on to replace him.
With the second half petering out, Wannell almost produced a moment of magic to win it for the Terras.
After an initial cross was charged down, the defender curled the ball with the outside of his left boot, an effort which clipped the angle of the bar as the game finished goalless.