Eastmond 14, Wilson 51


WEYMOUTH were eclipsed as Sutton United continued their Vanarama National League title quest with a commanding 2-0 win at Gander Green Lane.

After dominating the early exchanges, Sutton led through Craig Eastmond’s 14th-minute header.

Weymouth, who remain in 18th despite the defeat, failed to seriously test Sutton keeper Dean Bouzanis.

In the 51st minute, the hosts underlined their quality with a ferocious shot on the turn from the game’s stand-out performer Donovan Wilson.

After two consecutive away wins, this was a reminder of the gulf in class between the sides as Weymouth made four changes to the side that began the 2-0 defeat to Barnet on Bank Holiday Monday.

Jordan Ngalo, Ben Morgan, Jack Dickson and Cameron Murray all missed out.

Ngalo was missing from the squad entirely, with Morgan nursing a suspected hamstring tear. Dickson and Murray dropped to the bench.

Replacing the quartet were Brennan Camp, Jake McCarthy, Andreas Robinson and Sean Shields, with Camp filling in at centre-back for Morgan.

Prior to kick-off, striker Isaac Olaofe pulled up in the warm-up for Sutton and was replaced in the starting XI by Kenny Davis, with Aaron Simpson joining the bench.

Weymouth held Sutton for 80 minutes in the reverse fixture but the title-chasing hosts were in no mood to wait that long before scoring again.

In the second minute a hazardous cross from David Ajiboye zipped along the six-yard box for Harry Beautyman, although the striker’s finish on the stretch went wide.

McCarthy made a brave block to deny the ubiquitous Wilson and set up Weymouth’s best moment of the half two minutes later.

Shields began the move, picking out striker Andy Dallas who had peeled off to the right.

The Scot held the ball up and returned the favour for Shields whose powerful low strike at an acute angle was beaten away by former Liverpool keeper Bouzanis.

Wilson showed his physical presence by robbing Jacob Mensah of possession in the sixth minute, Weymouth’s centre-half grateful to Ethan Ross for a solid low stop.

At the other end, Bouzanis claimed an Ollie Harfield free-kick commandingly before Sutton deservedly led in the 14th minute.

The hosts had been swarming over Weymouth’s defence early on and a fabulous cross from right-back Jon Barden picked out the late unmarked run of Eastmond to bury a header past Ross.

Dorset Echo: Craig Eastmond, centre, opened the scoring for Sutton Picture: MARK PROBINCraig Eastmond, centre, opened the scoring for Sutton Picture: MARK PROBIN

Sutton should have made it 2-0 in the 21st minute as Omar Bugiel ghosted around Mensah near the byline only for Beautyman to guide his 12-yard effort just wide of the far post.

Wilson tested Ross with a low shot before Weymouth saw two promising free-kicks completely nullified by a strong Sutton defence.

Sutton continued their assault on Weymouth’s defence as Andy Robinson made a brilliant sliding tackle on Eastmond before Camp blocked Wilson’s shot in a delicate area.

Camp continued after treatment but soon saw himself into the book for dissent after making a legitimate tackle – referee Rob Ellis-Massey playing the advantage after McQuoid had fouled.

Weymouth improved before the break but a howling wind hindered their aerial crosses.

Sutton had no such trouble with kicking against the elements as they doubled their lead six minutes after half-time.

Wilson, who had been electric in the first half, took a touch, swivelled and unleashed a vicious strike past Ross from 20 yards.

His unstoppable shot was in keeping with Sutton’s quality but the hosts were also fortunate not to go down to 10 men when Davis, already booked for a foul on McQuoid, bundled Dallas over on the edge of the box.

Dorset Echo: Josh McQuoid, centre, came off on the hour ahead of Tuesday's trip to Solihull Picture: MARK PROBINJosh McQuoid, centre, came off on the hour ahead of Tuesday's trip to Solihull Picture: MARK PROBIN

Sutton blocked Robinson’s shot and the hosts were soon denied a third goal when Beautyman beat Ross only for the offside flag to be raised.

Weymouth boss Brian Stock brought off Dallas for Pierre Fonkeu and McQuoid for Ben Thomson after Wilson had yet again been denied by Ross.

Ajiboye snatched at a volley in the area prior to a Shields cross being superbly intercepted as Fonkeu lurked at the back post.

Sutton sub Tobi Sho-Silva wasted a free header in stoppage-time as the hosts went close to a third but Weymouth, although competing until the final whistle, had no answer to United’s dominance.

Sutton: Bouzanis, Barden, John, Goodliffe, Wyatt, Beautyman, Eastmond, Ajiboye (Browne 85), Wilson, Bugiel (Sho-Silva 70), Olaofe. Subs not used: Simpson, House, Rowe.

Terras: Ross, Camp, McCarthy, McQuoid (Thomson 64), Robinson, Brooks, Dallas (Fonkeu 63), Mensah (Leslie-Smith 52), Harfield, Worman, Shields. Subs not used: Dickson, Murray.

Referee: Rob Ellis-Massey