A first half Freddie Bullard goal made all the difference as Exmouth Town were beaten 1-0 at The Circle of Care Community Stadium by Lymington Town.

Despite an encouraging second half, Town failed to create any real clear cut chances, as they fell to a second successive home defeat in the Southern League Division One South. 

The game started slowly, with both teams struggling to make anything work once past the midfield.

Lymington had some opportunities in the first 15 minutes, with Luke Gray having a shot blocked by Ace High after two minutes, and Freddie Bullard almost getting a clear opportunity on goal as the ball slipped through to him, but the quick thinking of Robbie Powell prevented that.

Exmouth’s first sight of goal came after 15 minutes, as Ben Steer twisted and turned before firing a shot that landed straight into the arms of Amadeusz Skryzniarz. 

That was followed by absolutely nothing of note happening up until the 32nd minute, where a trademark Dan Preece long throw was headed into the path of Ace High, but his volley was well over. 

Four minutes later, the away side opened the scoring, as a superb ball from Luke Gray found an unmarked Freddie Bullard, who slotted the ball past Robbie Powell.

Lymington almost doubled their lead before the break as Jireh Oyebamiji burst through on goal, but Powell was there to deny a second goal.

Town started the second half with a lot more energy, with Ace High taking aim from the edge of the box a minute after the break, but his shot was over.

Denny was next to have a go from range, as he made his way to the edge of the box but he fired over. 

Ten minutes into the second half, Lymington had their best chance to add a second, as Oyebamiji took advantage of a Exmouth error and squared the ball across to goal scorer Bullard, but his close range shot went past Powell and past the post.

The theme of the game for the hosts was taking a lot of shots from long-range, but struggling to find the ball or run to make any clear chances on goal, with decent crosses going into the box, but a lack of willing runners saw them collected easily by the goalkeeper. 

Aarron Denny forced Skrzyniarz into a good save from 30 yards out, with the ball bounce forcing the goalkeeper to adjust his position. 

Jordan Harris had a half-chance as he got a hold of the ball in the 18-yard box, but his effort bobbled wide of the goal.

Exmouth were having their best spell of the game, and the Lymington defence were putting their bodies on the line to deal with it, and Jordan Harris’ shot was the last to be blocked before Town protested around a handball, but it was not given.

Callum Shipton and Mark Lever both let fly from long range, but both their efforts whistled wide of the goal.

Exmouth’s final chance to snatch a draw came in the 84th minute, as an Aarron Denny corner was headed down by Mike Landricombe, straight into the path of Ben Steer, who’s attempt from a difficult angle was never going to trouble Skryzniarz. 

It has been a difficult 2023 for Town, but they will look to build some momentum towards the run-in, as they travel to Bishop’s Cleeve next Saturday. 

LINE-UP: Powell, Preece, Riddell (Lever, 45), Rowe, Richards, Landricombe, Denny, Shipton (Dorathy, 81), High, Steer, Harris. Subs not used: Walford, Slater, Casey.


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