IT has been a mixed week for Bridgwater Town, with progress in the FA Cup followed by defeat in their Toolstation Western League opener.

Following their 1-0 win over Millbrook in the cup, the Robins travelled to Buckland Athletic, where two penalties inside five minutes from Ben Carter condemned the visitors to a 4-2 defeat on Saturday.

The long lay-off from league football attracted a good crowd to Homers Heath, and they witnessed a competitive game with six goals, six bookings, two penalties, two deflected goals and no shortage of action.

After an uneventful first 20 minutes, a defensive error let Jamie Passmore in to give Buckland the lead, but the visitors were level just seconds later, as Jack Taylor went on a mazy run from way out before a sublime chip over goalkeeper Kenny Griffith.

Five minutes later Austen Booth was given too much room by the Bridgwater defence, though, and his shot deflected in off Conor Bryant, who was injured and carried off with a nasty ankle sprain.

The Robins equalised again just past the hour mark, when defender Tom Ellis launched a huge throw into the area which the defence could not cope with, and Kieran Parkin could only help it into the net off the back post.

Once again there was an instant response, Buckland’s Joe Belsten getting behind the defence from the restart, and Josh Wadham pulled him down.

Carter converted the spot-kick and repeated the trick just minutes later, as Jordan Greenwood was caught out by an awkward bounce and was penalised for handball.

Bridgwater Town: Jake Viney, Olly Morris, Jake Llewellyn, Mark Armstrong, Jordan Greenwood, Tom Ellis, Mike Duffy (Fin Wilkinson 76), Sam Towler, Jack Taylor, Josh Wadham, Conor Bryant (Adnan Hiroli 30). Unused subs: Ryan Brereton, Reece Bannister, Tyne Govier.

Bridgwater will be aiming to pick up their first Premier Division win of the 2020/21 season at the second time of asking, as they entertain Clevedon Town tomorrow (Tuesday, 7.45pm).

That will be followed by a tasty-looking FA Cup preliminary round clash against fellow Western League side Bitton, at Fairfax Park on Saturday (3pm).

Robins co-manager Dave Pearse told the Mercury: “Every goal they [Buckland] scored on Saturday, we were poor.

"We were OK in the game, but didn't play great, with less energy and tempo than we showed in the second half of our pre-season.

"We were disappointed to give away such bad goals, but hopefully it will be a bit of a wake-up call for us."

He added: "When we play slowly we’re not a good side, but if we speed up, work hard and move the ball forward quickly we can make it hard for teams.

“We have to forget about Saturday and start again from where we left off in pre-season - the players know they have to step up.”