DORCHESTER TOWN 0 BROMLEY 4
THE score says it all really.
Whatever could have gone wrong for the Magpies at the Avenue last night did.
Four goals conceded, a man sent off and just one shot on target during the whole 90 minutes summed up Dorchester Town’s evening.
Goals from Moses Swaibu and Elliott Buchanan were bookended by a Louie Theophanous brace while Jake Smeeton received his marching orders for the hosts with the score at 1-0.
The result, like Saturday’s draw against Hayes & Yeading, left boss Phil Simkin perplexed and it remains to be seen how the players will react the next time they cross the white line.
The Magpies made one change from the side that started against Hayes & Yeading with Portsmouth loanee George Colson coming in for Jake Gosling, who had gone back to Exeter City.
Nick Crittenden took Colson’s place on the bench while also among the substitutes was Arran Pugh, a doubt before the game with a groin strain. Dan Way made way for the centre-half.
Other than that Simkin kept faith with the players that had let a 2-0 lead slip on Saturday as he looked for a positive reaction from his team.
The sweeping rain dictated that it wasn’t going to be a feast of flowing football, more a war of attrition as both sides attempted to pull themselves away from the Blue Square Bet South relegation zone.
Bromley striker Theophanous had the first meaningful chance of the game but after shrugging off Charlie Clough his shot was blocked for a corner.
Neil Martin replied with Dorch-ester’s first effort but his optimistic effort from long range was always sailing over.
Magpies’ keeper Jason Matthews needed to be on his toes to gather a dangerous Danny Waldren curler on the worst possible kind of night for a custodian.
But 19 minutes in Matthews was beaten. A long ball downfield found Theophanous 30 yards out and, without a challenge coming in, he decided to let fly. The shot flew past Matthews who had no chance of stopping it as the ball nestled in the bottom left-hand corner of his goal.
If the Magpies were going to make a response it wasn’t going to be an immediate one as the hosts struggled to get to grips with the conditions and all too often pumped aimless balls down the channels for Ben Watson to chase.
Watson’s strike partner Richard Logan tried his luck from just outside the Bromley area though it was always going wide and for the first half an hour that was about as good as it had been for the home side.
After the goal, Bromley weren’t afraid to try anything from distance and when Mark Jermyn misjudged a bouncing ball, ex-Terra Pierre Joseph-Dubois flashed a speculative attempt high and wide.
The only bright spark of the opening 35 minutes from a Magpies’ point of view came when Watson linked up with Sam Malsom, he beat his defender on the outside and whipped in a low cross that was begging to be attacked.
Unfortunately for Dorchester no-one was alert in the middle.
Not long before half-time Watson missed a glorious chance from close range but luckily for him the linesman’s flag had already gone up.
Dorchester started the second half with Smeeton on for Martin at left- back but it only took a few minutes for Colson to earn the game’s first yellow card for a foul.
Captain Jermyn then came close to equalising when his cross from the right flew past Joe Welsh’s far post and with the unrelenting rain still coming down Colson made way for Crittenden – but the night was just about to get a whole lot worse for the hosts.
First of all, Smeeton was shown a straight red card for bringing down Tony Finn when he was through on goal then Bromley struck twice in as many minutes.
From the resulting free-kick Matthews spilled Finn’s shot and defender Swaibu pounced to stick the ball in from two yards.
Then, with Dorchester still reeling from going 2-0 down, Jermyn was adjudged to have brought down Theophanous in the area and referee John Busby pointed to the spot.
Although Matthews saved Theo-phanous’s spot-kick Buchanan reacted the quickest to side-foot home for 3-0.
It could quite easily have been four or five as Bromley made the most of their man advantage. Jermyn headed off the line from substitute Aaron Rhule then Matthews made a flying save from the same player.
The visitors weren’t to be denied a fourth though and Theophanous, who had opened the scoring, rounded things off as he came inside onto his left foot and slid the ball into the far corner to complete a dreadful night for Simkin’s team.
Magpies: Matthews, Jermyn, Martin (Smeeton 45), Clough, Walker, Gleeson, Colson (Crittenden 52), Nicholls, Watson, Logan (Thompson 62), Malsom. Subs not used: Brooks, Pugh Bromley: Welsh, Ming, Patterson, Fuseini, Swaibu (Holland 90), Harwood, Joseph-Dubois (Rhule 73), Waldren, Theophanous, Buchanan (Chaaban 80), Finn