Spectators were the victors at Victory Road
THE spectators at Victory Road on Saturday were the victors, according to Leiston manager Mark Morsley.
After seeing his side extend their undefeated run to nine Ryman Premier matches following the goalless draw against their Suffolk rivals Bury Town, Morsley said: “I thought they were the best side in the first half and we were the best in the second half. They could have scored a couple of goals in the first half but didn’t while we could have done the same in the second half.
“From my point of view, I am pleased because our keeper has not had a save to make, but Marcus Garnham has made three great saves.
“Losing Leon-Ottley-Gooch with a hamstring injury was a blow because our squad is thin on the ground, but we just have to get on with it.
“Danny Thrower is not the same type of player as Patrick Brothers (who was injured) and Ottley-Gooch was struggling, but we made changes at half-time and went with three up front and caused them more problems.
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“They are fourth in the table and have changed their formation to deal with us and gone with one up front, which shows how much we have come on this season and I take pleasure out of that.
“It is another point, another clean sheet and keeps our unbeaten run going. It was a good game and the victors were those watching because if you enjoy football you would have enjoyed that. Neither side was playing for the draw.
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“Sam Nunn did really well when he came on after being destroyed at Bury by Manny Osei, so fair play to him.”
Assistant manager Ben Chenery, who was in charge of the visitors because Bury Town boss Richard Wilkins was laid low by illness, felt his side did enough to claim all three points.
He said: “I felt we deserved to win it. We controlled the game and in the first half with the chances we had we should have been 2-0 up and that would have been a good platform to build on. It turned into more of a cup-tie atmosphere once they got going.
“You are judged on what you do in the final third of the pitch and not how well you have passed the ball, and we were not ruthless enough in the final third.
“We had good opportunities but didn’t take them, but we are pleased with a point and a clean sheet.”
Morsley was perplexed by the Football Association’s decision to appoint Bury St Edmunds-based Darren Stobbart as referee.
He said: “He is a very good referee and I like him immensely, but is it fair to appoint a referee from Bury St Edmunds?”
However, Bury Town assistant manager Ben Chenery defended the decision.
He said: “Referees are very professional and it would make no difference to me if he was from Leiston or Bury.
“To be honest, I was not even aware where he was from until half-way through the game.”
Bury Town goalkeeper Marcus Garnham, who preserved his side’s point with a string of fine second-half saves, said: “In the first-half I had nothing to do, while we had three or four good chances.
“Obviously there was going to be a reaction from them and they came out and gave us a good game, but were not able to capitalise on that.
“My best save was the block (from Manny Osei) early in the second half as he was only about four yards out. I knew he was there when the ball came across and I just threw myself at the ball and got in the way, but that is my job.”