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FOOTBALL: Toghill's stunner fires Portland
PORTLAND UNITED 2 BRIDPORT RESERVES 0
JOE Toghill’s stunning first-half free-kick set the Blues on their way to a second victory of the new season at Grove Corner.
Portland and Bridport went into this local derby on the back of opening day wins so confidence was high in both camps.
Played in front of a crowd of more than 100, the game started with the hosts playing into the wind and it was the visitors who made the brighter start.
With the match being played at such a fast pace, there wasn’t a great deal of quality on show, but as things settled down, Portland began to come more into it.
Chances were at a premium, however, the deadlock was broken five minutes before the break when Toghill smashed a left-foot free-kick into the top corner from the edge of the Bridport box.
Now with the wind helping them, the Blues started the second period on the front foot and it was scorer Toghill who had a chance to double the lead.
But having rounded Bees’ keeper Billy Fleet he sent his goal bound effort wide of the target.
The game continued to be very physical and competitive, and the stop-start nature did not help proceedings.
The hosts were creating the better chances but Brid-port always posed a threat on the break.
Portland eventually made the game safe in the 89th minute when substitute Adam Linaker, pictured, scored from a tight angle to give the home side all three points.
Blues’ boss Gary Bailey said: “It was a typical local derby, at times played at a furious pace which was didn’t help the quality of football.
“Once again I thought we started slowly, but credit to Bridport as they started very brightly and made it difficult for us to play.
“The first half was a tight affair with few chances for either side. Joe Toghill’s free-kick was a great strike and came at a perfect time for us.
“I thought we were the better side in the second half and could have been more comfortable had we taken some earlier chances.
“Until we scored that second goal it was always a bit nervy, although we defended well and they never really tested Ash Weeks in our goal.
“I’m pleased to get the three points out of what was a difficult game for us. The players put in a good shift and ground out a result.
“I was particularly pleased with Will Gould in his first competitive start for the club. He looked very assured at left-back and hardly put a foot wrong and Joe’s goal was worthy of winning any game.”
Blues: Weeks, McKechnie, Why-ton, B Doidge, Gould, Mutch, Halloran (Carter), Toghill, Smith (Linaker), R Doidge R, Clarke. Sub not used: Newnham.
Bees: B Fleet, Staines, A Clarke, Day (King), Stordy (Cummings), Gale, Steele, Fry, Jones (Scovell), B Clarke, S Charles Match ball sponsor – Jan and Dave Camp Attendance: 106
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