Confidence escapes a poor St Albans City as Weymouth leave with the points

PUBLISHED: 16:59 14 September 2019 | UPDATED: 18:39 14 September 2019

St Albans City and Wymouth teams head out onto the Clarence Park pitch ahead of the National League South fixture.

St Albans City and Wymouth teams head out onto the Clarence Park pitch ahead of the National League South fixture.

Archant

A poor performance added to an equally poor score as St Albans City surrendered meekly to Weymouth in National League South.

Goals from Yemi Odubade, Andreas Robinson, Shaun Hobson and Jake McCarthy ensured the Terras would head back to the south coast with all three points, meaning Joe Iaciofano's strike before half-time was a mere consolation in the 4-1 loss.

Victory away to Hungerford Town in their last outing should have given Saints plenty of confidence and there were glimpses of nice, neat and probing football.

But they were few and far between and this still looks like a side lacking in belief that they can go out and boss games.

And this was a contest that needed just that sort of control.

Weymouth have impressed since their promotion last year and part of that reason has been plenty of attacking flair.

Therefore Saints may want to question why they allowed them a huge amount of time and space in critical areas and at critical times.

Lionel Ainsworth had the first chance when he was allowed the opportunity to turn and move forward, the shot needed a full-length save from Dean Snedker to push it around the post.

City's number one had a busy opening 45 minutes although Weymouth may question why he was still on the pitch after colliding with Ben Thomson on the half hour as the big striker raced down the right-hand side of the box on a break.

The referee felt, probably quite rightly, that yellow was a fitting punishment.

The save he made from the resulting free-kick, palming away a Stephane Zubar header from under his own crossbar, would not have lifted the Terras' grumbles.

Snedker had made another excellent stop 15 minutes before his caution, flying out to block an Odubade effort, another moment which saw Weymouth's forwards given too much time in the City box.

The home keeper could do nothing about the opening goal though as Saints' right flank again seemed to be their undoing.

Odubade got it, slipping it beyond Snedker and it rolled harmlessly into the net missing the sliding pair of Thomson and Tom Bender, one trying to score and the other trying to clear.

Saints had opportunities themselves mind but the equaliser when it arrived on 40 minutes was a gift.

Albert Adu did a good job with the high press to intercept a pass and he laid it into Iaciofano who put the ball between Callum Ward's legs.

It was a goal that was perhaps undeserved but delightfully taken but when they should have seen the game out to half-time, Weymouth snatched the lead back.

A free-kick from a central position from Jake McCarthy was deflected off the wall and heading in until Snedker somehow changed direction and pushed it onto the post.

It came back out and after a brief scramble it was bobbled into the net, Zubar claiming it but with the final touch from Robinson.

If that was a morale-sapping blow, the start to the second half by St Albans gave no indication of that.

They were by far the brightest they'd been all game and chances for Iaciofano were blocked and then gathered by Ward.

A deep cross from Rhys Murrell-Williamson on his right foot down by the byline was inches too high for Albert Adu.

It naturally petered out after a bit and Ian Allinson threw on both Sam Merson and Scott Shulton, his first appearance of the season after injury, to try and produce another lift.

It needed it too as the home crowd didn't seem to sense a comeback despite the fact Weymouth's attacking intentions were still seriously limited.

They seemed far more content to exploit breaks on the counter attack and it was from one of these that they won a free-kick, a moment which led to the clinching goal.

That was moved from the left wing to the right where Thomson was able to skip a challenge and then pick out Hobson with comfort.

The finish was emphatic, high and hard over the top of Snedker.

Merson had the ball in the net shortly after only to be denied by the offside flag and Weymouth could have comprehensively sealed it when Harfield's cross was headed over by Calvin Brooks.

They needn't have worried though as Harfield did pick up an assist as Weymouth found a fourth in the first minute of stoppage time.

He powered in a free-kick from the left-hand side of the box which was met by the unmarked visiting skipper who planted an equally firm header beyond Snedker.

It was a disappointing end to a disappointing game and there will need to be a lot of soul-searching from some of the Saints players and backroom staff.

St Albans City: Snedker, Bender, Longe-King, Kaloczi, Bawling, Miles, Iaciofano, Noble (Shulton 66), Adu (Merson 66), Murrell-Williamson (Banton 75), Sprague.

Subs (not used): Foxley, Nwabuokei.

Goals: Iaciofano 40

Weymouth: Ward, Harfield, Zubar, Ainsworth (Murray 62), McCarthy, Thomson, Baggie (Wakefield 86), Odubade (Wells 75), Robinson, Brooks, Hobson.

Subs (not used): Rees, Williams.

Goals: Odubade 33, Zubar 44, Hobson 70, McCarthy 90+1

Booked: McCarthy 18, Baggie 57

HT: St Albans City 1 Weymouth 2

Attendance: 642

Referee: Michael Ryan (West Sussex)

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