By Alex O'Loughlin
April 16 2011
Ten man Yeovil Town rescued a point against Oldham Athletic this afternoon in a performance largely missing quality and desire, although the point should seal their league one status.
Manager Terry Skiverton stuck with the same side which over came Notts County in mid week, sticking with Oli Johnson in what was his last game in a green and white shirt before he returns to his parent club Norwich City after completing his loan stint at Huish Park.
The match was being officiated by the infamous Trevor kettle, and his early decision making was good denying Oldham two dubious penalty shouts after first Cedric Evina and then Oumare Tounkara went down under little contact in the box.
But the first twenty minutes of the match were dominated by the Latics, who deservedly took the lead on the seventeen minute mark thanks to a swift counter attacking move.
Jason Lowe picked out Reuben Reid down the right hand side who made the most of some static Yeovil defending to then slide the ball across to an on running Chris Taylor who finished well from the edge of the box to give them a thoroughly deserved lead. 0-1.
Just as it looked asif Trevor Kettle may have turned a refereeing corner he produced a yellow card to Luke Ayling when there wasn't even a foul to award, after the full-back had forcibly (but fairly) dispossessed Dean Furman.
That decision enraged the Yeovil fans who began to barrage the referee with a number of far from friendly chants.
Yeovil were playing as if their League One future's were definitely secure, and given the case was not that you cannot excuse their first half lack of commitment and unwillingness to battle.
In fact, it took the Glovers until the 45th minute to earn their first corner, which was the closest Oldham 'keeper Dean Brill got to the ball in the opening half of football.
Half Time: Yeovil Town 0-1 Oldham Athletic
After leaving the field at half time to a chorus of boos it was clear they had been given the clichéd hairdryer at half time, as they changed to a 4-4-2 formation with Nathan Smith taking to the pitch instead of captain Paul Huntington, who had had a first half to forget.
Things began brightly in the second period for Yeovil as they earned a number of corners in quick succession, all triggered from Jon Obika's chance when he drew a smart save from Brill after finding space in the box to shoot goal wards.
From one of the resultant corners Max Ehmer almost found his first professional goal, only to see his header cannon off of the post and avoid the following Andy Welsh eventually being cleared to safety.
Just as it looked as if the Green and Whites were beginning to take charge of the game they were dealt a blow when Luke Ayling received a second yellow card, after the right-back foolishly lunged in on Cedric Evina to earn his second yellow card, although the handing out of his first can be disputed.
Ironically that was the second time this season Ayling has been sent off by Kettle, who also sent off the youngster at Sheffield Wednesday earlier in the season. Kettle's already tarnished reputation at Huish Park had now delved even lower.
You could have forgiven the referee for shying away from some decisions after irritating the home crowd, but he continued to do so as he flagged hand ball against Oli Johnson as he ran through on goal despite seemingly having his vision impaired by a number of players.
As time ticked by it looked like the game was gone for the Glovers, but then popped up new dad Andy Welsh, who cut in from the right wing, jinking inside one Oldham defender before scrambling the ball past Dean Brill and into the net, rescuing a point for the dismal Glovers. 1-1.
Yeovil saw out the remaining time with relative ease and earned a point which should guarantee them safety from the drop, but their attitude and desire must improve if they are to push for the top half finish they claim to be chasing.