Far better performance pleases fans despite Welwyn Garden City’s exit from Herts Senior Cup to Bishop’s Stortford

PUBLISHED: 11:43 18 October 2018 | UPDATED: 11:43 18 October 2018

Former Takeley striker Stuart Zanone (middle) made an instant impression for WGC with a debut goal. Picture: TAKELEY FC

Former Takeley striker Stuart Zanone (middle) made an instant impression for WGC with a debut goal. Picture: TAKELEY FC

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A sixth defeat in seven games may seem depressing but the Welwyn Garden City support would have been in better spirits despite the 2-1 loss to Bishop’s Stortford in the Herts Senior Cup.

This was a vastly-improved performance with plenty of fresh new faces bringing a new vigour to the Herns Lane club.

Manager Adam Fisher made three signings in the week, Stuart Zanone from Takeley, Sean Brettell from Baldock Town and Danny May of AFC Dunstable.

The first two both featured here as did 17-year-old attacking midfielder Billy Hodgkins, who has impressed in the U18s fine FA Youth Cup run.

And Zanone made an instant impression on his new adoring support with the Citizens only goal of the game, pouncing on a low cross after good work from Brettell and Jon Clements.

The former Ashford United and Cheshunt man has been in fine form for Takeley this season and his sheer physical presence, pace and power added a great deal to a shot-shy WGC attack that has struggled for goals since the season’s start.

WGC were in charge for most of the first half and kept visiting Blues goalkeeper Patrick Ohman busy.

Josh Bronti had two efforts saved and the keeper’s legs denied Clements.

And they even hit the bar, Zanone’s header looping over Ohman but bouncing out.

And those misses were to prove costly as Stortford grabbed the lead a minute before the break, full-back Chris Gregan hitting a dipping effort that bounced up over keeper Dan Green.

The visitors were better from the start of the half, but again WGC had their chances, Nick Elliott stinging Ohman’s palms with a strong shot having been set up by Clements.

And they got their reward on 63 minutes with Zanone’s deserved debut goal.

But WGC were only on terms for 10 minutes as low cross from the right eluded the home defence and substitute Ryan Charles placed a low effort beyond Green to restore his side’s lead.

Clements responded with a 30 yard dipper towards an unguarded goal, eight minutes from the end, after Ohman had been drawn out by Zanone, but the spectacular effort was inches wide and with it, went WGC’s hopes in the senior county competition.

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