There were plenty of positives to take out of Exeter City’s win over Bath City on Tuesday night, according to manager Matt Taylor.
The Grecians beat the Conference South side 1-0 thanks to an early second-half goal from Matt Jay. However, it was a tough evening for Exeter with Bath starting the brighter and limiting them to a lot fewer chances than they had in their previous pre-season match – a 6-0 win over Truro City.
“They really tested us, in the first half especially but we stood up to it,” said Matt. “We started to play better and the more the game opened up the more comfortable we were in possession.
“We were a little bit sloppy at times on the ball, certainly first half, but we grew into the game and when things aren’t going your way you have got to stay in the game and the clean sheet was vital tonight. We are delighted and really pleased to get another positive result.”
Bath had former Grecian Ryan Brunt in their starting XI, along with ex-Newport County midfielder Sean Rigg and former Southend United defender Anthony Straker.
“They (Bath) have signed some good players,” said Matt. “The manager has done a really good job here and I expect them to have a good season in their league this year.
“However, it is all about us and that was a real positive 60 minutes for some players – a few players got a bit more in terms of minutes – and we have come through it unscathed again. However, it was a good test and a much sterner test than we have had previously.”
City created more in the second half and Jay scored his second goal in as many games firing home after Jayden Stockley had played him in at the edge of the box.
“It was a good finish and that is what he has got to do,” said Matt. “He scored a really good goal on Thursday and he has backed that up again. He and Jayden will have to play better at times, especially on the back of the first half, but when they did link up and we had a bit of a control in the game they were excellent.”
“The game was always going to open up,” added Matt. “They (Bath) made a lot of changes, as did we, and then the game becomes slightly disjointed and then gaps appear.
“Then people like Jack (Sparkes) and Joel (Randall) have got to take the opportunities when they get those chances on the pitch. The final ball can improve, but we had a bit a pace and power on the pitch at the end with Tristan (Abrahams) and Jono (Jonathan Forte) and everybody else went about their jobs in the right manner. It was another honest display from the lads.”