Match 13
1st October 1969
Swansea Town (h)


Wednesday October 1st 1969.


It must have been that the few sharp and well-chosen words used by the City player-manager John Newman to his players after the Port Vale flop on Saturday went home with penetrating effect, and the crowd of 5,183 heard the echo in a mighty six-goals explosion at St. James's Park on Wednesday. It was nothing short of unbelievable, and quite fantastic. The Exeter players simply went on the rampage from the word "go" and produced by far their best display of the season, if not for a few seasons, to eclipse Swansea Town by six goals to none.

City: Shearing; Crawford, Morris; Parker, Sharples, Balson; Corr, Blain, Wingate, Mitten, Walker. Sub Giles.

Swansea:- Millington; Lawrence, Gomersall; A. Williams, Rosser, Thomas; Allchurch, Slattery, H.Williams, Gwyther, Evans. Sub Slee.

Referee: Mr E.T.Jennings of Stourbridge.

: Messrs C.H.Bond and P.C.Potter.

Exeter outplayed the "Swans" (who were not incidentally a bad team) in this match and produced everything, effort, hard work, pace, running and chasing, good combination play, ability, and clever football. The Grecians in fact had everything. The City played fast, direct football that cut the Swansea defence to pieces, and five of their goals came in the first half. "Mr. Utility" himself, Jimmy Blain, was a huge success as a striker. He was moved from full-back to inside-right for this game, and how well he played and how well he proved his versatility. He was not alone, it should be added, and on this display by the team no one man can be particularly singled out. It was a massive all-round team success. Swansea Town on the other hand must have felt that the Severn Bridge had hit them! They came to St. James's Park full of confidence being unbeaten in their previous five matches.

They expected to leave Exeter with at least one point, if not two. As things turned out they were soon in for a big shock, and more were to follow as the City kept up their relentless no mercy attitude. The Welshmen however did show on odd occasions that they were by no means duffers themselves at moving the ball around smartly, but the City were in no mood to let them do this too often. Swansea should have scored once, almost on the last kick, but apart from that their best effort came from Alan Williams and Slattery, and on each occasion Shearing brought off splendid saves. Other than this it was virtually all Exeter as they ripped through the Swansea side, and Wednesday October 1st will be a night to remember.


Because of a groin injury Sharples did not appear when the teams came out for the second half, and the City moved Balson to centre half to accommodate Giles, the substitute player, at left half. Walker, whose fault is that he holds on to the ball too long, has the hardest shot of any of the Exeter players with the possible exception of Banks, and he gave the Swansea goalkeeper a taste of this early in the game. Millington, however, rose to the occasion to bring off a brilliant save from the Exeter left winger. Then in the 13th minute Exeter took the lead as the result of persistence and determination by Blain. He chased a ball flicked on by Wingate and beat a defender for speed before ramming his shot into the top corner of the net. Within a minute it was two nil. Mitten fed Wingate, whose shot was blocked but Corr followed up to score at the second attempt after his first drive had struck the woodwork. There was no stopping Exeter, and after 33 minutes they scored again following a clever move between Walker and Mitten which finished with Wingate heading a brilliant goal. The cheers were still ringing around the ground when Balson and Blain paved the way for Mitten to crash home the fourth goal in the fortie th minute.


Two minutes later the fifth goal went into the Swansea net. Corr got this one following a move by Wingate and Mitten which spreadeagled the Swansea rear guard. The final nail in Swansea's coffin was hammered home 22 minutes from the finish. With the visiting defence standing still Blain raced from the half-way line to collect Mitten's pass and as Millington came out lobbed the ball over the goalkeeper's head to drop into the unguarded net behind him.

    Brian Sharples is out of the Exeter City party named for the double trip to Lincoln (Saturday) and Darlington (Monday). The tall centre half did not play in the second half of the mid-week match against Swansea, described above, because of a pulled muscle in his groin, and as a consequence he is not fit to travel. Alan Banks will also be staying at home. Although nearly fit he is to undergo a few more days of treatment and training before he plays again. John Newman may be at centre half against Lincoln City.



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