Spasov 45

WEYMOUTH’S first home game in the Vanarama National League ended in a 1-0 defeat as Woking took a deserved three points from the Bob Lucas Stadium.

Weymouth lacked spark in attack and their best chance fell to Tom Whelan, who dragged his shot wide from a good position in the fifth minute.

Slavi Spasov got the winner on the stroke of half-time, sliding home at the back post from an inviting Charlie Cooper free-kick to inflict Weymouth's fourth home defeat in a year.

Terras’ boss Brian Stock made four changes to the starting XI that began the 0-0 draw at Altrincham on Saturday.

Corey Jordan, Josh Wakefield, Andreas Robinson and Cameron Murray were the players to miss out.

Wakefield and Robinson dropped to the bench, while Jordan and Murray were absent from the squad altogether.

In came Ben Thomson, Jordan Ngalo and Whelan, while Josh Leslie-Smith made his competitive debut for the Terras.

On the bench, winger Alefe Santos claimed his first appearance in the matchday squad this season.

Prior to the contest, Weymouth had only lost three times at home in the calendar year and the Terras duly made a bright start to their first home league match of the season.

Kicking against the wind, Calvin Brooks’ booming cross to the back post invited the late run of Whelan, who controlled into the area and dragged a shot wide from 15 yards.

Woking dealt well with two corners as Weymouth searched for the opening goal, and set about imposing their strength from set-plays.

Weymouth initially defended the Cardinals’ first three corners well in what were warning shots from the Surrey side.

Jake McCarthy cut inside and fired at Woking keeper Craig Ross before he lashed another deflected shot just over the bar with Ross stranded.

Midway through the half, Woking hit the post as keeper Jack Bycroft juggled a corner, the Cards hemming Weymouth in their own half.

Cody Cooke did not alleviate the pressure by conceding a free-kick which Cooper curled into the gloves of Bycroft from 35 yards.

Needing to release the pressure valve, Weymouth nearly did so when Whelan pulled a shot wide before the Terras’ second clear chance of the half.

Thomson did superbly to wrestle the covering defender off the ball but his hesitation near the byline with the unmarked McCarthy begging for the ball 12 yards out allowed Woking to retreat and block his pass.

Weymouth’s habit of conceding niggling free-kicks continued when Brennan Camp saw yellow for a heavy tackle and yet another free-kick on the near touchline finally breached the Terras’ defence.

Cooper swung in a devilish delivery to the back post where Spasov slid at full stretch to slot past Bycroft into the far corner in the 45th minute.

Woking resumed following half-time in the ascendancy, with West Brom loanee Saul Shotton heading wide before Camp was lucky not to see yellow again for handball near the touchline.

Weymouth boss Brian Stock made two changes before the hour in an attempt to stem the tide of Woking attacks.

McCarthy and the ineffectual McQuoid made way for Wakefield and Santos but Weymouth resorted to long balls as their lack of creativity was exposed.

When the Terras did work an opening, it came from a Woking error as their defence got caught underneath a long ball, allowing Cooke to hold play up and find Brooks.

Steaming on from the right, Brooks crossed too firmly for Thomson and the chance was gone.

Sub Andreas Robinson dragged a shot wide before a shaky spell for Bycroft, whose habit of punching and missing crosses was nearly exploited by Woking.

The Cardinals continued to test Bycroft with high balls and the Southampton keeper proved unconvincing, one mis-punch causing a scramble six yards out before Weymouth belted clear.

Woking always looked comfortable in defence but escaped punishment when Whelan’s 89th-minute free-kick sailed to the grateful Ross.

Four minutes were added as Weymouth chased an equaliser but poor deliveries into the box again stunted their attacking intent as Woking claimed a second successive win.

Terras: Bycroft, Camp, Ngalo (Robinson 72), McCarthy (Wakefield 59), Thomson, McQuoid (Santos 59), Leslie-Smith, Brooks, Cooke, Whelan, Harfield.

Subs not used: Benfield, Hoey.

Woking: Ross, Cook, Casey, Cooper, Shotton, Ferdinand, Collier, Spasov (Hall 86), Napa, Block, Goddard.

Subs not used: White, Tarpey, Kretzschmar, Reid

Referee: Daniel Lamport