In the midst of a brief break from the action, Jack Davies takes a look back at what has been an ‘action-packed’ first half to the season; and what better way to start than the Farm’s opening day trip to Thame United in the Emirates FA Cup…
Farm began the season on the road in the FA Cup and it looked like being a tough start. 2-0 down to Thame and with new season optimism drifting away, Farm’s mesmerising second half saw them score three unanswered goals, to progress to the next round. Their first league game was full of drama too, twice behind to Larkhall at home, new striker Owen Brain bagged a brace, including a 94th minute leveller from the penalty spot. Another equaliser away to Bideford, this time from winger Jayden Nielsen, snuck another point on the board before Farm hit four in the cup against neighbours Roman Glass. The first defeat came away to Cribbs, in front of their record competitive crowd. August ended with another point in the league, Evander Grubb’s goal cancelled out by a Yate Town equaliser.
September began the same way August did, with away victory in the cup. Bishop’s Cleeve dispatched before Farm were edged out in a 7-goal thriller to Mousehole. 3 cup games followed, beginning with a penalty shootout win at Thatcham before successive cup defeats on the road to Didcot and Bishop’s Cleeve. The month would end in style for Farm, as they finally got their first league win. Evander Grubb doing the damage, with his late winner at Bashley.
A roller coaster October began with an excellent follow up to the previous win. Malvern dispatched at home before Wimborne handed Farm a comprehensive defeat on the road. A third win came away to Evesham, the returning Marcus Day grabbing the winner, before an especially disappointing home defeat to managerless Paulton. A narrow Gloucestershire cup defeat on penalties followed before the month was ended with another superb away win. Grubb bagging a brace as Farm edged Exmouth out by 3 goals to 2.
George Kellow, the man who had scored for Cribbs against Farm earlier in the season, got his first goal for his new club in a home draw with Cleeve. November being the third time those two sides had met already this campaign. Back-to-back defeats followed, despite Farm scoring twice in either game. An injury time winner for Tavistock cancelled Jayden Nielsen’s double before Ollie Woodhouse and Ben Bament’s goals weren’t enough for a result away to high-flying Bermerton. A tricky month would end with a comfortable victory and the start of a few weeks break. Kellow at the double as Farm soundly put Westbury away at the NL Services Stadium.