‘We would loved to have signed him’ – Moneyfields boss Turnbull praises ‘outstanding’ Harry Sargeant after Baffins’ stunning Wessex League derby win

Glenn Turnbull hailed his former US Portsmouth midfielder Harry Sargeant after the midfielder completed a stunning Baffins Milton Rovers recovery.

By Simon Carter
Monday, 3rd January 2022, 8:19 pm
Baffins skipper James Cowan is down injured after a foul which led to a booking for Moneyfields' Callum Glen. Picture: Martyn White
Baffins skipper James Cowan is down injured after a foul which led to a booking for Moneyfields' Callum Glen. Picture: Martyn White

Moneyfields boss Turnbull saw a Steve Hutchings double put his side in command of today’s Portsea Island Wessex League derby.

But within six minutes of Hutchings’ 49th minute 20-yard half-volley which doubled the advantage, Baffins were ahead.

Strikers Jason Parish and debutant Craig McAllister hauled Rovers level before Sargeant struck a lovely 20-yard winner.

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Turnbull had wanted to bring Sargeant to Dover Road last summer along with the majority of the USP squad that had reached the FA Vase semi-finals.

But Sargeant was the one player who decided to seek a new challenge elsewhere - choosing to sign for Baffins instead.

‘Sarge was outstanding in the second half,’ praised Turnbull.

‘We wanted to sign him last summer because we know what he’s about.

Baffins defender Ed Sanders, left, and Moneyfields' Dec Seiden. Picture: Martyn White

‘That was one thing Shaun’s (Baffins boss Wilkinson) side was lacking, a decent box to box midfielder.

‘He made a tackle on the edge of his own box and was down the other end to score the winner.

‘We would love to have signed him, but he wanted to try a new challenge and I respect him massively for that.

‘Last season he was always vying with Callum Glen and Jordan Pile for two places in midfield, and perhaps that was on his mind.’

Baffins striker Craig McAllister scored on his debut against Moneyfields. Picture: Martyn White

Referee Jacob Wright was at the centre of a couple of controversial moments in a derby which was certainly passionate throughout.

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He failed to award Baffins a first-half penalty for a foul on Jason Parish, while Moneys were furious he didn’t send centre half Lee Molyneaux off with about five minutes remaining for bringing down James Franklyn. In the aftermath, Moneys defender Tom Cain was sent off for a second bookable offence for an altercation with Baffins keeper Konrad Szymaniak.

‘How that wasn’t a sending off (Molyneaux foul on Franklyn) is beyond me. It blows my mind a little bit,’ remarked Turnbull.

Baffins celebrate a goal at Moneyfields. Picture: Martyn White

‘Franko was clear … I don’t know how that wasn’t a sending off.

‘I’m not saying he (Wright) cost us the game, because that’s not true - Baffins should have had a nailed-on penalty in the first half.

‘Maybe we expect too much, we expect referees to be like robots. They want respect, but it works both ways.

‘Franko had pulled away from Lee and was in the clear - no-one would have caught him.

‘Then Caino’s been sent off and, instead of them being down to 10 men, it’s us who are down to 10.

‘I like Jacob but perhaps that game was a bit too big for him.’

Striker Josh Bailey answered an SOS from Turnbull to leave work early and sit on the bench to give Moneys a strike option.

When he came on, he fashioned a glorious chance for himself but shot just wide from close range.

‘Josh made himself a great chance, if he gets it on target it’s in. Steve (Hutchings) has missed one, Franko’s missed a couple. We had more than enough chances to get an equaliser and go on and win. It’s frustrating.

‘I thought we were good in the first half, we played some nice football.

‘Steve’s got a great second goal and I was thinking ‘now let’s just keep it tight’ … then we had a mad five minutes. It was unbelievable.

Baffins boss Wilkinson hailed his squad’s character as they joined Horndean, Hamworthy and Brockenhurst on 51 points at the top of the table.

‘We were off it a bit in the first half, we weren’t at the races. We’d had a Christmas break since we last played and it showed.

‘I was hoping for a clean sheet because I knew we’ve always got goals in us. Once we got the first we were relentless.

‘Credit to the lads, this group don’t know when they’re beaten, they go to the death.’

Wilkinson fielded a strong squad, with top scorer Rudi Blankson, Miles Everett and Alex Przespolewski on the bench.

‘We had probably the strongest bench I’ve put out - most of them would get in most Wessex League teams - and I’m always confident we’ll get goals with the firepower we can bring on,’ he stated.

‘We should have had a stonewall penalty in the first half, and I don’t think the Molyneaux incident was a sending off - there were too many bodies around him.

‘It was tough for the ref - it was a passionate game, local derby, big crowd. It was a good game for the neutral, not for managers - it had a bit of everything.

‘It was important not to get beat, that was the main thing, but I’m delighted to take six points off Moneyfields. This was our toughest match of the season.’

Veteran McAllister crowned his debut - he has been signed from Southern Leaguers Lymington - with a trademark header from a fine George Britton cross that had ‘quality’ stamped all over it.

‘Craig’s not fully match fit but you could see what he’ll bring to us. That cross into the box was egg and chips for him, he thrives on those. I said to our wingers to try and get the crosses in.

‘Bringing Craig in will take some of the pressure off Jason Parish as well. Jason had been working hard but not scoring, before today.’