Bath City Fleet 0-2 – Ebbsfleet United Football Club


Another 2-0 win and a clean sheet saw Fleet complete the double against Bath City and maintain the club’s recent run of good results at Twerton Park. Goals at the start of each half through Ben Chapman and substitute Dominic Poleon were the same as last week at home against Eastbourne, but Dennis Kutrieb praised post-match for pressing play and the defensive work of his team.

It was Sido Jombati’s first return to Twerton Park since leaving Bath 11 years ago as he kept his place in the starting line-up, but Kutrieb had to make two changes due to injury. Kieran Monlouis and Jack Paxman entered, with Tobi Adebayo-Rowling and Ashley Nathaniel-George absent.

And it was the perfect start for Fleet after clearing Omar Holness’ run behind the back line on the game’s first attack. Two minutes later, Paxman – playing wide on the left – sent a cross into the middle of the box. Chapman appeared to be flattened by goalkeeper Ryan Clarke as he rose to challenge and as the Bath defense came to a halt Shaq Coulthirst tried to knock the ball down. He didn’t quite make it but Chapman rose from the ground to latch the ball behind him and into the net with confusion reigning supreme in the home defense.

Minutes later, another run from Chapman threatened to take Craig Tanner all the way through on goal, but his shot went too high to bother Clarke. A more hesitant home defense took Coulthirst by surprise, but he managed to carve out a chance which was cleared for Chapman. The goalscorer headed it towards Coulthirst who again saw the defense shut him down and they almost got the ball to safety.

After that poor start, Bath began to gain plenty of possession in the middle of the park and Louie Moulden had to be vigilant to claim an Eddie Jones cross from Holness at the foot of his near post. Callum Rowe was next to trouble the Fleet defense as Bath played neat football but a red shirt put him behind for a corner.

The ever-energetic Chapman provided Coulthirst again in the 19th minute when his interception and lead caught Bath napping, but the ball again strayed away from the striker who struggled to get it. drop on the bouncing and sloping surface.

Fleet lost Tanner to injury in the 24th minute to be replaced by Lee Martin before Sefa Kahraman sent in a free kick with a left foot on target which Clarke was able to recover on the second attempt.

Bath’s best opportunity for an equalizer came in the 37th minute when Cody Cooke fashioned an opening across the fleet’s surface. A superb challenge from Chris Solly was denied and as Bath recycled it, Fleet demanded an equally important tackle from Monlouis on Jordan Dyer to clear his lines.

When needed, Moulden showed great confidence and quick thinking to claim crosses, with Eddie Jones firing another towards the corner of the goal a minute before half-time before the effort from Ryan Jones is deflected by a teammate over the Fleet bar.

Ben Chapman gets up off the ground just before shooting the opener

Dominic Poleon was introduced for Coulthirst at half-time and the change paid off almost immediately for the visitors.

As in the first half, Fleet’s first noticeable attack in the second extended the lead. It happened in the 51st minute, Martin tackled on the edge of the box as he tried to place a shot, Monlouis followed that up with a big curling effort that Clarke could only parry Poleon’s way and the under. -marin buried it 10 meters away.

It took some of the sting of Bath’s game for a spell and Fleet was happy enough to simply fend off any forward venture by the home side. Jombati may have scored on his return to Twerton Park on the hour mark, finding himself in a good position on the right of the box but slid a ball on the ground which Clarke cleared. Poleon’s strong run also threatened again, but the bulky Batten put up a solid challenge to Fleet’s top scorer with 14 goals.

Bath made two more substitutions afterwards and showed they were still dangerous when Tom Smith scored on goal. Moulden came out and Smith’s effort failed to muster enough power, but still needed Kahraman to get out of the six-yard box.

While the home side looked no more threatening than this chance for Smith, that was largely due to a disciplined performance from the fleet that was organized when on the back foot and brilliant in midfield, which didn’t give Bath time to settle in to mount any comeback.

Monlouis’ strength on the ball on the run through the middle was remarkable and Paxman was busy keeping Bath’s full-backs on their toes. The home side created a few more half chances with two scrambles 10 minutes from time but Jombati mopped up the first and there was little conviction from the home forwards when the second lingered around the fleet area.

Joe Raynes looked wide at the end but Moulden never looked uncomfortable with the defenders in front of him and it was obvious 2-0 would be enough before the final whistle.

CFEU: Moulden, Solly, Jombati, Kahraman, N’Guessan, Monlouis, Chapman, Paxman, Tanner (L.Martin 24), Romain, Coulthirst (Poleon 46). Subs: Mekki, Finney, Haigh
BCFC: Clarke, Raynes, Delaney (Smith 46), Batten, Holness (Sims-Burgess 64), Cooke, E. Jones, Ball (Frear 64), Rowe, Dyer, R. Jones. Subs: Fuller, Richards
Presence: 1,175

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