This Tuesday sees Bath City face Weston-super-Mare for a third time this season.
A place in the Somerset Premier Cup semi-finals is up for grabs and this is one of three quarter-finals to be played this week. Taunton prevailed on penalties against Bridgwater at the end of January, the other ties to be decided are Clevedon v Brislington (Monday) and Larkhall v Wellington, who meet on Wednesday at Plain Ham. Whoever wins this contest at Twerton Park will be the highest ranked side left in the competition.
City are the holders, ironically winning the cup at Weston’s Optima Stadium last May, defeating Paulton Rovers 4-1 thanks to goals from Dan Hayfield (2), Scott Wilson and Luke Spokes. Weston lost at this stage last year to Bridgwater which proved a wise move, it left them to concentrate on clinching the Southern Premier South title. They’ve won the Somerset Premier Cup four times, all in the 2010s, their most recent triumph in 2019 to take some consolation from a season which saw them relegated from National League South.
The Romans have been victorious 25 times and with Yeovil eliminated in the last 16, it’s a chance to replace the Glovers as most successful side in the competition. Jerry Gill’s first silverware in 2023 was City’s first Somerset Premier Cup glory since 2008, when Paulton were again the beaten finalists.
Weston eased past Western League Division One outfit Hengrove Athletic 9-0 in round two to reach this stage. The tie only went ahead when former Bath midfielder Rex Mannings helped fix the floodlights, a worthwhile exercise for the electrician as he went on to score four in a rout against a side four divisions below. Mannings has history in this competition – he netted Frome’s consolation against City in 2022 then scored for Bath in a 3-0 win over Brislington last term. Gill’s side had their annual meeting with Frome Town in November, the third year running they’d met in the SPC. Goals from Scott Wilson, Ewan Clark and Cody Cooke helped the Romans ease to a 3-1 victory to set up this tie.
Both sides are expected to field strong line-ups and they’ll know enough about each other, having met twice in the league. Enough has been said about Weston’s 6-2 win at Twerton last August and City gained revenge a couple of weeks ago where Cooke’s 50th goal for the Stripes earned a 1-0 win. The Seagulls have had the upper hand in this competition in recent years, ousting City in 2017 and 2018. This is their first Somerset Premier Cup tie at Twerton Park against Bath since December 1996 – they lost 4-3 but were reinstalled into the competition at as Matt Walker, who opened the scoring for City, was cup tied and therefore. The mistake also earned the club a fine.
Tickets will be discounted for this contest, the third of five home games in a row for Bath City.
Come along and enjoy a Tuesday night under the lights!