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Brian Caffarey - 2nd August 2008

Those Woking fans who came along to Kingfield this afternoon hoping ? even expecting ? to see something like the side which will line up in a week?s time against Altrincham were in for a big surprise. With a back four consisting of two Academy players, a trialist and a player who has been told he does not figure in Kim?s plans, one can only hope that the performance and result were no guide at all to how we will perform next Saturday.

Those missing, presumably injured ? which in itself is worrying at this stage of the pre-season ? included Tom Hutchinson, Paul Lorraine, Danny Bunce, Gez Sole and Bradley Quamina.

So, the Cards lined up with Nick Gindre in goal, a back four of Matt Gray, Dan Sintim, Colin Miles and Ashley Quashie-Pownall, with newly-signed Kunle just in front of them. Ahead were Joel Ledgister and Abdou El Kholti on the right and left flanks, Matt Pattison and Paolo Vernazza in midfield and Manny Williams as the lone striker.

Little of note occurred in the first twenty minutes apart from some nervous clearances into touch from Dan Sintim. The Bees then began to exert more pressure, with the impressive Alan Connell always looking threatening and with some good prompting by Gary Smith in midfield. Connell fired off several shots on goal, one of which required a smart save from Nick Gindre.
Woking seemed vulnerable down their right, with Joel Ledgister apparently not always tracking back to help out Matt Gray, ironically one of the better players on the day.

Cards fans were given something to applaud when some clever play by Abdou El Kholti won a corner but nothing came of it. Shortly afterwards
Woking had their first shot on goal, Joel Ledgister firing well over the bar.

Brentford?s big number 9, Nathan Elder, increasingly got in the action, heading across the face of goal before Connell rained in a couple more shots. Woking?s best move of the half came in the 35th minute when a swift attack saw Matt Gray sweep the ball out to Ledgister, who crossed and then fired just wide of the post. The Bees, however, should have opened their account when Marvin Williams shot hurriedly and well wide.

Woking 0 Brentford 0

As against
Colchester, the Cards? defence switched off early in the second half. Both Miles and Kunle were caught in possession, with a minute gone. The ball was played inside to Connell, who couldn?t miss.

Woking then made a series of substitutions, which can?t have helped to create any cohesion.

Brentford?s second goal was somewhat fortuitous when Glenn Poole?s intended cross hit the far upright and ricocheted back into the net.

The only real hope for
Woking fans came from the determined runs of Delano Sam-Yorke (pictured), one of which produced a decent shout for a penalty as he was stopped just inside the area.

The Bees? third goal came from sloppy defending. Abdou El Kholti, now at left back, failed to deal with a ball forward and his pass back was under-hit. Marvin Williams nipped in to make it 3-0.

Goma Lambu and Manny Williams tried to put some moves together out on the right but there was little end product and Liam Marum seemed unable to get into the game.

Brentford?s fourth goal came in the 65th minute. Glenn Poole, receiving the ball from a corner, slammed it across the area, where trialist Marc Phillips directed it into the
Woking net.

Another enterprising run by Sam-Yorke into the area earned him the penalty which he had nearly gained earlier in the half, as another trialist, James Phillips, illegally halted his progress. The Bees? keeper, Seb Brown, got his hand to Manny Williams?s spot kick but couldn?t prevent it going in.

The Bees spurned a chance to make it six when Glenn Poole?s dummy disconcerted the
Woking defence but also fooled his own team mates, and the chance was wasted.

This was a disappointing and puzzling afternoon for
Woking fans. It?s hard to pick out many positives, although Delano Sam-Yorke showed again that he can be dangerous when given the space to run at defences and Manny Williams, though often isolated, showed some nice touches. However, Colin Miles had a poor second half after looking comfortable in the first period, and Paolo Vernazza had much less impact in a more conventional midfield role than he had when playing in front of the back four at Oxford.

Let?s hope that we can look back on this match as a pre-season aberration!

Woking: Nick Gindre, Matt Gray, Dan Sintim (Matt Ruby, 63), Colin Miles (Phil Gilchrist, 84), Ashley Quashie-Pownall (Delano Sam-Yorke, 54), Kunle (Jerome Maledon, 59), Joel Ledgister (Goma Lambu, 54), Matt Pattison (Liam Marum, 45), Paolo Vernazza, Abdou El Kholti, Manny Williams

Attendance: 966

Last pre-season friendly:

Woking v
Southampton XI

7.45pm on
Tuesday 5 August 2008



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