Westgarth’s Cadbury Heath reaction

Falmouth Town manager Andrew Westgarth admitted his side’s performance wasn’t up to scratch despite strolling to a 5-1 victory over Cadbury Heath in the Western League Premier Division on Good Friday.

Tim Nixon scored twice and Luke Barner, Luke Brabyn and Olly Walker also found the net for the hosts in front of a healthy 491 crowd at Bickland Park, with Tom Withers replying for the league’s bottom side.

Nixon opened the scoring when his bullet header cannoned off the post and rebounded into the net off the unlucky Jordan Schofield in the Heath goal, and while Withers levelled just before the break, Barner was on hand to restore Town’s lead immediately with a composed finish.

Brabyn doubled the home side’s lead just after the hour when he found the net from Walker’s cross, but missed the chance to add a fourth when his penalty was well saved by Schofield after Dan Winstone had handled inside the box.

But it was four soon after with the goal of the day when Walker provided a sublime chip over Schofield that nestled inside the far post, with the visitors then having a goal ruled out for offside before Nixon completed the scoring late on with a cool finish after a fine team move.

The victory keeps Town in eighth position in the Western League, with Westgarth’s pre-season target of a top-half finish almost confirmed.

“I think the scoreline pleased me more than the performance, I don’t actually think we were that good. We’ve definitely played a lot better,” Westgarth said after the game. “We started the game all right but we just couldn’t find that extra gear in the first half, we had no real attacking threat and I thought we were poor with the ball from the back.

“It wasn’t vintage at all in the first half and obviously to concede just on half-time I wasn’t very happy, but then our goal 30 seconds later definitely changes your outlook on the half in your team talk, but I think the boys knew they had more to give.

“In the second half I was delighted with the scoreline but it could easily have been 4-2 but their guy was offside. I wouldn’t say it makes it nervy [if it was allowed] because that was pretty much all they had, I think they scored one, had one disallowed and that was pretty much them. 

“It was pleasing for us to have a healthy scoreline, we haven’t had many of them in this league so I’m absolutely delighted overall with the margin and I’m really pleased with the manner of the goals we scored as well, they were quite nice goals actually.”

Walker received the club’s man-of-the-match award despite only playing the last half an hour of the game, such was the winger’s impact from the bench as a 61st-minute substitute for Barner.

Walker provided the assist for Brabyn within two minutes of entering the field, before going on to score the pick of the goals with his sensational lob and then playing a part in Nixon’s second and Town’s fifth of the day.

Westgarth also hailed Nixon’s contribution on the other flank, with the winger scoring twice to take his tally for the season to 16 — a total that makes him the club’s top goalscorer this term.

“[Nixon’s] second goal was a lovely finish and he’s really added [goals] to his game this year,” Westgarth said. “To be the top goalscorer in a team when you’re a winger, you can read into that what you want but I would look at that as a positive.

“Nico’s really taken to the Western League this year and he put in a very good performance today and his second goal was the pick of his bunch, it was a great team goal and a great finish under pressure.

“We’ve missed [Walker] really, he’s been electric every time he’s played for us and his goal was top-drawer,” he said. “Him coming on gives you that different dynamic, he’s a completely different winger to what we’ve already got: he’s direct, he’s at people, he makes things happen, he just puts the fear of death into defenders. 

“He comes on and gets an assist, then gets another one and a goal, a great impact for half an hour and we’ve really missed him.”