Mellor stakes claim with clean sheet
Bath City's squad has included one goalkeeper and a deputy – and sometimes not even that – for many years.
But Saturday's game at Sutton showed the club now have a real choice between the sticks.
In an increasingly confident performance, 23-year-old Jason Mellor came of age and presented the more experienced Glyn Garner with a battle if he is to regain the number one jersey.
"Glyn and I have a good relationship," said former Clevedon Town shot-stopper Mellor.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Wednesday, May 22 2013
"We work together when we train so it's hard for one of us if the other is in goal but I would like to think I can keep my place, having had three clean sheets in three games."
City fought a rearguard action for most of the 90 minutes against a Sutton side who looked determined to put right a poor home record of only one league win this season at Gander Green Lane.
"It was a busy day for me in goal but I think we defended well as a team," added Mellor.
"I felt confident we would keep a clean sheet, although we were under a lot of pressure in the second half."
Despite Sutton making a lively start, City managed to go ahead against the run of play.
The opening goal came from a free-kick after Chris Allen had been fouled on the right. Aaron Brown swung the ball deep, beyond the far post, where Charlie Griffin was waiting. The forward nodded back across the 18-yard box for Mark Preece, who powered in to head his first goal in City colours.
For a moment United looked stunned but they soon got onto the front foot again and increasingly pressed City back.
As the game moved into the second half it became almost one-way traffic. The impressive Stefan Payne made a number of darting runs down the right and, with Harry Ottaway on the left and Craig Dundas through the middle also threatening, City reverted to a five-man defence by bringing Josh Low back and playing Griffin and Allen as wide midfielders.
It was time for Mellor to take command and he did so with considerable confidence, bellowing at his defence, diving at the feet of his opponents and charging off his line with the all the urgency of a man about to miss the last train.
"You have got to control the six-yard box as a keeper," he said. "That's your territory and you have to come and take the ball.
"Diving at the feet of people is what you have to do. I am a fairly big lad and you have to get your body in the way.
"I am not afraid to shout at the defence as we are all friends. You take a shouting when you need to but it's fine in the dressing room afterwards."
Mellor and City were then rewarded in the final minute when the visitors doubled their lead.
Marc Canham, who had come on for fellow substitute Joe Burnell, laid the ball off to Allen and he in turn slipped it to Kerry Morgan.
Travelling at speed, the winger raced into the box before giving keeper Kevin Scriven no chance with a low, penetrative shot.
Mellor's performance left City director of football Adie Britton full of praise.
"He was fantastic today and at times extremely brave," said the former manager.
"He comes across as reasonably confident, although I am not always sure quite how confident he is and there are lots of raw edges. He's a lovely lad and I hope he seizes his opportunity."