Ratteray-Smith denies Eagles in thriller
Somerset Eagles 3 Somerset Trojans 3
Jaden Rattery-Smith grabbed a late equaliser to rescue a point for ten-men Somerset Trojans in one of the the most thrilling West End derbies in recent memory at White Hill Field yesterday.
Eagles appeared to be home and dry after substitute Ethan Fubler put them ahead 3-2 early in second-half stoppage, the goal arriving six minutes after Trojans striker Dion Stovell received straight red for showing dissent towards referee Garic Swainson.
Trojans' never-say-die attitude paid off as defender Rattery-Smith took a his chance well with virtually the last kick of the game to earn them a share of the spoils.
Nathan Rego struck twice in the first half before Trojans hit back through goals from Stovell and Deunte Darrell either side of the break to the leave the contest wide open.
Eagles took a 2-0 lead via Rego's clinical brace. The striker broke the deadlock when he ran onto Teniko Eve's through ball and slotted past Trojans goalkeeper Dequan Crockwell.
Rego doubled their advantage when he beat defender Trevin Ming to a loose ball and dribbled past two more defenders before firing past Crockwell.
Trojans got a foothold in the match when Stovell drove in substitute Jaellan Greaves's corner at the back post a minute before half-time. Darrell then drilled in Leo Burgess's corner to bring the teams level. Trojans were reduced to ten-men when Stovell lost his cool.
Things then quickly went from bad to worse for the visiting side as Eagles regained the lead when substitute Fubler scored from a corner.
However, the game took another dramatic twist when Rattery- Smith ran unchecked into the box and tapped in Khiari Sharrieff-Hayward's free kick.
“I thought they [Eagles] started the game at a higher tempo than us hence they went 2-0 up,” Dennis Brown, the Trojans coach, said.
“We got that goal back close to the half and one of the things we talked about at the half was not to panic and there is a lot of time to come back. We needed to switch up our play a bit and were basically giving the ball away too much.
“What we had to do in the second half was protect the ball a bit more and utilise the pitch a bit more which we did.
“I will take the point being we were down to ten-men. I thought we showed good character to hang in there and fight to the end.”
Jensen Rogers, the Eagles coach, was disappointed not have come away all the points.
“We had a game and from the first minute it was working to a tee,” he said. “But Somerset being Somerset and it being a derby they made it difficult and got back in the game.
“Once they got one goal we knew that they would try and push for another and I feel that the chances they were getting was given to them too easy. We talked about it at halftime and made some changes.
“We started out a little slow in the second half but we tuned in as the game went.
“When it came at 2-2 it became a battle of who gets the next goal wins and we snatched the next goal. But lack of focus, lack of determination, lack of heart, lack of passion and it's 3-3.
“Both teams played their socks off and hats off to Somerset. They played to the final whistle.”
Somerset Eagles: Rego 4, 30, Fubler 90+4
Somerset Trojans: Stovell 44, Darrell 75, Jaden Ratteray-Smith 90+4
Somerset Eagles (4-4-2): L Lambert — A Morrissey (sub: E Fubler, 78min), K Evans, L Burch, S Lambert — M Iris-Simmons, A Telford, T Eve, R Woodley-Smith (sub: C Smith, 86) — N Rego, T Wade (sub: D Simmons, 85). Substitutes not used: J DeSilva, R Ford, G Smith. Booked: Morrissey.
Somerset Trojans (4-4-2): D Crockwell — K Sharrieff-Hayward, T Ming (sub: J Greaves, 35), J Stowe, Y Williams — Jaden Rattery-Smith, K Jennings (sub: Jaz Rattery-Smith, 64), M Joell,L Burgess — D Darrell (sub: Z Smith, 75), D Stovell.Substitutes not used: T Sharrieff-Hayward, J Butterfield, D Wainwright, D Swan. Booked: Darrell. Sent off: Stovell.
Referee: G Swainson.