ASSISTANT manager Ashley Vincent was as pleased as punch to see Worcester City overcome nine-man Stourport Swifts 3-1 – even if he didn’t look it.

City were vibrant throughout and looked good value for victory before straight red cards for Umit Eminoglu midway through the second half and Andy Nicol at the death.

Nicol’s lunge at Joel Caines right in front of the dugouts had Vincent hot under the collar but referee Paul Sparrow cooled tempers by reaching for his back pocket.

“It was a heat-of-the-moment thing, I did not think it was a great tackle,” said Vincent.

“Their lad had committed a foul just before that and I could see what was coming by the way he was running towards Cainesy.

“He went over the ball and on another day Cainesy might have suffered a really bad injury. I was not happy because I did not think it was right but that’s football.

“Luckily, our lad is okay and the referee made his decision.

“In hindsight maybe I should have stayed in my box but they are our players and I want to protect them.”

City dominated from the off with Jordan Harrison guilty of missing a sitter 18 minutes in, clearing the crossbar from six yards following Tyler Weir’s low drilled cross.

Harrison soon made amends, though, sweeping inside the near post after Weir had tenaciously burst into the box and rode a challenge.

City got embroiled in too many skirmishes towards the end of the first half and Swifts pounced with an unlikely leveller two minutes past the 45 as Jack Downing tucked in from Jim Hanson's blast across the face of goal.

The frenetic pace continued which seemed to suit Worcester with Weir and Harrison combining down the right for the latter to pull back to Dave Reynolds who lashed high into the net 58 minutes in.

City chances continued to come and go and Stourport had a mountain to climb when Eminoglu was dismissed for his only contribution seconds after coming on, a high and late challenge on Reynolds.

Keeper Dan Jezeph saved City, pushing around the upright Drew Canavan’s curler which seemed destined for the bottom corner with 15 minutes to go.

But normal service was resumed when substitute Kyonn Evans made the decisive third, cutting in from the left before James Baldwin scooped over the line despite an attempt to hack away.

The game was up and Nicol unleashed his frustration late on to cap a miserable day for the visitors.

Assessing a fluent City display, Vincent said: “We went 3-5-2 to match them up from what I saw on Saturday but had a bit of a surprise when they changed their shape from the start.

“What our boys did really well was implement our shape and game plan rather than worry about what they were doing.

“We have good players who can play in different formations and I thought the boys were fantastic.

“It was a really good professional team performance. We left three boys out of a winning team from Coventry Sphinx and one did not even get on but they were all happy for everyone because we won the game.

“It is not about individuals, it is about us all sticking together to get a good result.”

MFL PREMIER DIVISION: Worcester City 3 (Harrison 22, Reynolds 58, Baldwin 86) Stourport Swifts 1 (Downing 45+2) 

City: Jezeph 7, WEIR 8* (Baldwin, 64, 7), Osbourne 6.5 (Lockett, 54, 6.5), Gallinagh 7.5, Forsyth 7, Stoddart 7, Birley 7, Caines 7, Harrison 8, Reynolds 7.5 (Evans, 80, 7), Withington 7. Unused subs: Bates, Dayus (g/k).

Swifts: Richards 7, Joe Hanson 6.5, Platt 6.5, Priest 6.5, Griffiths 6.5, Jim Hanson 6 (Billingham, 49, 7), Melvin 6, Danks 6 (Eminoglu, 66, 2), Nicol 3, Canavan 6.5 (McPike, 66, 6), Downing 7. Unused subs: Parsons, Mulders.

Attendance: 460.