Spanish striker Juan bagged a hat trick as Woodstock Town maintain their perfect league record with a battling 5-0 victory over Chinnor.
Woodstock were without a number of key players for this encounter and had to call up several players from the Development Squad with Rob Greenslade coming in to partner Tom Butler at centre back with Ryan Doran starting wide on the right.
After a frantic opening couple of minutes, Town took an early lead when Juan picked up a loose ball 25 yards out, skipped past the Chinnor defence to calmly slot past the imposing home keeper.
Chinnor toiled and laboured but had little answer to Woodstock’s intricate passing football as Town looked dangerous on every attack. The Chinnor keeper pulled off a fine save to keep out a long range Jamie Fisher strike.
At the other end, Woodstock looked less assured with some uncharacteristic errors allowing Chinnor chances but Molloy was equal to the danger on each occasion.
The Reds extended their lead on 35 minutes when a long range swinging pass from Ollie Hawkins was diverted past the on rushing keeper by Nathan Emmett’s head, beating him to the ball and nipping it off his fist as he came off his line to punch clear. Brave as well as pinpoint.
Emmett could have made the game safe on the stroke of halftime when he struck the foot of the post.
A dominant performance in the first half but one that was below the high standards that Town have set for themselves this season.
Chinnor threw caution to the wind in the second half and looked to get forward with renewed vigour and vim. However, Woodstock delivered the knockout blow on the hour when a sliderule pass from Nathan Emmett set Juan through to neatly finish to make it 3-0.
Woodstock would still need to see the game out and were given warning just two minutes later when Tom Molloy was called in to action to save brilliantly from point blank range.
On 66 minutes, Juan completed his first hat trick when he found himself free beyond the Chinnor defence to sit the keeper down and place the ball into the far corner. Three goals of quality.
The Reds were awarded a penalty on 72 minutes. Jamie Fisher saw his spot kick saved by the keeper however, diving to his left to beat the ball away.
Wartalski completed the rout on 82 minutes when his speculative free kick from 40 yards was missed by everyone including the Chinnor keeper and the ball squeezed in at the far post.
Hawkins saw a late header go over the bar from close range and substitute Sam Jeffrey struck the inside of the post as the game finished 5-0 to Town.
This was not a vintage performance by and stretch of the imagination but it is often said that successful teams can play badly and still win. That a “weakened” team can still win 5-0 is a sign of the strength in depth at the club and the quality in its ranks.
Town are up to 3rd level with leaders Southam but with a game in hand.