In what will go down as one of the most one-sided college football matches in recent history, Vanbrugh overwhelmed Langwith to romp to a 5-0 victory.
Striker Ali Prince will take the plaudits for a clinical first half hat-trick, as well as a stunning early goal, but this was also a brilliant team performance from Vanbrugh. Captain Phil Taylor could not have asked for a better reaction from his side after their defeat to Derwent two weeks ago, with Vanbrugh scoring ten goals in their last two matches. Five of those goals were scored in last week’s thrashing of Halifax, and Vanbrugh are heading into next week’s top of the table clash with Goodricke full of confidence.
After the game Taylor even suggested the final score could have been greater, and unsurprisingly declared himself as more than happy with his side’s form going into next week’s match-up. He said: “We dominated the game-it (the final score) should have been more. Our defence was strong today, and we were solid throughout the team. The big one is obviously Goodricke next week, and things couldn’t be going better at the moment.”
Impressive as Vanbrugh were, they were facing an unimaginative Langwith side who offered very little. One man down before a ball had been kicked after captain Callum Sheridan’s no-show, Langwith were also missing their talisman and key goalscoring threat, Bruce Starkey. Vanbrugh were in charge from the off, and after fifteen minutes they went ahead courtesy of a fantastic strike from Ali Prince. Receiving the ball on the edge of the area with his back to goal, the forward took one touch before swivelling and volleying a sublime left-footed shot over goalkeeper Tom Lambert and into the corner of the net. Few better goals will be scored this year, and from that moment on Vanbrugh never looked like relinquishing their lead.
Vanbrugh’s second goal came on the half hour mark, with Prince latching onto a through ball in the area and finishing calmly past Lambert. The forward’s hat-trick was then completed just before the whistle blew for half-time. Left winger Clarke, a menace to the Langwith defence all match with his dangerous crossing, delivered an inviting cross that Prince, reacting faster than his marker, leapt up to meet and bury past a helpless Lambert. 3-0 at half-time, it was already game over for Langwith.
When play resumed in the second half things continued in the same vein, with Vanbrugh always in control and Langwith having little to offer but defensive resistance. Langwith were still looking for their first shot on target fifteen minutes before full time when Vanbrugh nabbed their fourth goal, Rob Rix finishing from a tight angle after good work from Ben Stanier on the edge of the area to create the opportunity. Minutes before the end of the game Vanbrugh added insult to injury, scoring a fifth when Matt Scaysbrook’s shot from outside the box flew in via a deflection.
With no captain present after the final whistle, a circumspect Liam Condron praised Langwith, despite the hammering, for a “spirited performance” after being forced to play the match a man short. “There was a lack of organisation from the captain Callum Sheridan today,” admitted a wry Condron.
Goodricke will provide more of a test than a captainless Langwith, but after this performance Taylor and his team will head into next week’s encounter confident of taking all three points.