Exmouth Town boss heaped praise on his side for the way they bounced back from the major disappointment of the FA Vase defeat to Sherborne to see off Axminster Town and ease their way into the last 16 of the Throgmorton Cup.

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After the dust had settled on a splendid afternoon’s work and a 4-1 victory over the same opposition who had held them to a 0-0 draw on the opening day of the new season, Pears said: “I asked for a response and I got one. Not only did I get what I was looking for, I actually got the best 25 minutes I have seen this team play! We were quickly into gear and the game was done and dusted inside 25 splendid minutes with us three up. It really was a superb show. Great passing, excellent movement on and off the ball and some clinical finishing.”

He continued: “If I have a gripe it is that we did not absolutely bury the opposition and that has to be on the list of things still to do for this team. All the very best teams have an in-built ruthless button that they press to go for the footballing jugular. The opportunity was there for us to do that against Axminster and we seemed to step back off the gas and let them escape with a 4-1 reversal as opposed to a right royal hiding! This current group of players have now shown me that not only to do they hurt when we lose, but also that they are all, to a player, keen not just to listen when things are put before them, but to actually go out and put into practise what we have spoken about or worked in any training session. I was gutted after the Sherborne defeat and I guess that that got through to the players. They flew at Axminster and got the job done very quickly, and efficiently.”

Pears singled out one particular player from the game. He explained saying: “Ace High has been so patient and bided his time. He is certainly made of the right stuff. I guess some players would have been all for walking away without a start, but not this lad. He took his chance really well on Saturday and certainly put down a marker for a regular starting berth. The way he linked up with Ben (Shepherd) was most impressive. I saw the makings of a great strike pairing now. The thing I particularly like about Ace (High) is the way he listens and clearly wants to improve his game. I’ll help him do just that!”

Pears’ now prepares his team for Saturday’s visit of Plymstock.

He says: “Plymstock will, I am sure, be as solid and as disciplined as Plymouth sides always seem to be and so we may well have to show more patience as a team to break them down. I do expect them to come here and look to take something from the game and if that is the case we are going to have to box clever and make sure that when any opportunities present themselves, we nail them! That said there’s nobody we need to be fearing now. We have good players all over the pitch and, as we have shown in the way we bounced back from serious disappointment (the FA Vase defeat), we clearly have character and desire in abundance, as was shown collectively in the Axminster Town win!”

As for the longer term goals in light of the clubs great start to the season. The Town boss says: “The league is our priority and all our energies and resources must be ploughed into a concerted effort to see Town playing in the Premier Division next season. It’s clear the club wants higher level football, I see that the players want it and I certainly want it. If we stick together, even when the going gets tough, I am very confident that we shall reach our goal – and sooner rather than later.”

Check out how Town do against Plymstock in the next edition of the Exmouth Journal which is out on Thursday, November 1.

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