Millbrook 1-3 Buckland

Sep 22, 2021

GOALS king Levi Landricombe scored twice as Buckland returned to winning ways with a comfortable Western League Premier Division victory over struggling Millbrook at Jenkins Park.

Landricombe fired an individually brilliant opening goal in the 34th minute, breaking from midfield to power forward and smash a left footer in off the post.

And the poacher – dual registered with Bodmin Town – was on hand five minutes into the second half to finish off after a defensive mix-up from a Millbrook side attempting and failing to play out from the back. Young sub Josh Webber, who replaced Landricombe eight minutes from time, added Buckland’s third a minute from time, with the Millbrook defence again making a terrible hash of trying to play out on the edge of their penalty area.

Rikki Shepherd reduced the arrears from the penalty spot as the game moved into time added on but it was the smallest of consolations for the home side. While Buckland were justifiably delighted with their performance and the result after a 3-2 defeat at Saltash at the weekend, Millbrook reflected on another disappointing night. This was their fifth defeat in their opening seven games in the Western League and they are conceding goals at an alarming rate.

There are mitigating circumstances of course – teenager James Morley, signed on a short term loan from Plymouth Argyle, was the fourth keeper they have used already this season because of injuries. But you can’t make the sort of basic mistakes they were guilty of against a strong side like Buckland and get away with it. Strikers of the quality of Landricombe will always cash in. With their admirable policy of sticking with the squad which has got them to Western League level, Millbrook were always going to face an uphill battle following their promotion from division one east of the South West Peninsula League. They won’t – probably can’t – sign a proven striker on dual registration and use him when they can.

And they have suffered a gruelling start to life at a higher level, mostly playing teams who are likely to feature in the top six – Tavistock (twice), Helston, Mousehole (twice) and now Buckland. It is far too early to judge them – they remain a good enough footballing team to compete against lower half of the table sides – but they must find a way to stop giving opposition a start in virtually every game.

Only in the 4-0 win over bottom of the table Bridport have Millbrook taken the lead in a league game. Usually they are one or two goals behind and finding themselves having to chase games. Teams as good as Buckland then make it very difficult for them. It will be interesting to see how they respond when they take the lead. Saturday’s home game against mid-table Clevedon Town provides their next opportunity.