Connect with us

Match Reports

Second-placed Horsham hailed for highest finish since 2006, no matter what happens now



Dominic Di Paola has hailed the efforts of all involved no matter what happens in the play-offs as Horsham clinched second place in the Bostik League South East Division on Bank Holiday Monday.

The Hornets rounded off their campaign with a 2-1 away win at Guernsey to confirm their highest league position since 2006.

Guernsey v Horsham. Steve Metcalf. Picture by John Lines.JPG

Guernsey v Horsham. Steve Metcalf. Picture by John Lines.JPG

Goals from Chris Smith and Lee Harding handed them their 23rd win of the campaign and ensured they go into next week’s play-offs against either Ashford United or Haywards Heath at home on a run of six straight wins.

Horsham manager Di Paola said: “We played ok. We looked a little leggy, but in general we were pretty good. It was nice to get the final win and over the finish line of the league campaign.

“The boys have been brilliant. The points per game total and where we have finished in the table regardless of what happens in the play-offs.

“The fact we had lost four out of six in the first month of the season and gone on to finish second especially with the calibre of the league is something.

Guernsey v Horsham. Lee Harding strokes home. Picture by John Lines

Guernsey v Horsham. Lee Harding strokes home. Picture by John Lines

“If the season finished now I’d be really happy with what we have achieved as a football club. To finish above some of the teams we have is brilliant. The boys and staff behind the scenes deserve all the credit.”

Horsham opened the scoring on 21 minutes thanks to a well worked goal. Kieran Lavery’s run down the right-wing wasn’t tracked by the Guernsey defence, allowing him to thread the ball into the path of Smith who tucked home with aplomb.

That was the way it remained until Guernsey shot themselves in the foot with 13 minutes of the game left to play after another awful back-pass. Keanu Marsh was the guilty party this time, as Harding raced onto the ball to fire past Stanton.

A Carlos Canha rocket from outside the box with two minutes to go ensured a nervy finish at Footes Lane, but the visitors saw out an added five minutes.

Di Paola added: “I think they had one shot and scored from it. Don’t get me wrong, we did not create a huge amount, but the Saturday game took a bit out of us. We were a bit leggy.

“Once we got the second we were able to see it out. It was quite a professional performance – the boys have added that to their game. Earlier in the season we kept playing to score and expansive football an came unstuck a few times.”

Horsham: Mant, Metcalf, Sparks, Brivio, Miles (Hyde 66), Merchant, Lavery, Hayward, O’Toole (Taylor 84), Smith (Richardson-Brown 67), Harding. Unused: Lovegrove, Baxter.

Continue Reading

Match Reports

Sussex Senior Cup final LIVE: Who will win out of Burgess Hill Town and Bognor Regis Town?



Burgess Hill Town and Bognor Regis Town are battling it out tonight in the final of the most prestigious cup competition in Sussex.

You can follow it all here as we cover the match live. Match report and reaction will follow but please refresh this page for updates.

Continue Reading

Crawley Town

Crawley Town v Tranmere Rovers preview: Can Reds stop the biggest attacking threat in the league?



The final game of a long and poor season has reached as we play out our final game at home to Tranmere Rovers.

It’s been a very poor season for the Reds and one that has seen us much lower down the table than expected.

Luckily, they have clawed ourselves away from the bottom two and now will look to re build over summer.

The season was summed up last week at Carlisle after an extremely first half saw the Reds 4-0 down in 31 minutes. It was once again not good enough and it was a very poor first half performance. A decent second half showing was not enough and didn’t make up for an inexcusable first half.

SEE ALSO The astonishing all-time English top-flight table from its 131 years existence – including 65 clubs | Crawley Town’s Dannie Bulman up for April Goal of the Month Award | Crawley Town head coach looks forward to challenge of playing play-off qualifiers Tranmere Rovers
Tranmere’s game last Saturday was postponed and would’ve decided if they still had a chance of gaining automatic promotion.

That game was replayed on Tuesday evening, but a 1-1 draw against Bury means they’ll have to settle for play-offs. They have already booked themselves a place in the play-offs, so this is also a nothing game for them.

James Norwood (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

James Norwood (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

They have the biggest attacking threat in the league with James Norwood, who is by far the leading goalscorer in League Two and will be picking up the golden boot award at the end of the season. He’s scored over a third of Tranmere’s goals this season and has been a huge reason in their surge for promotion.

As for Crawley it is a nothing game as we have nothing to play for. We will look for our first home victory since March 9th when we beat Grimsby 2-1. Since then we have picked up more points on the road then at home despite being very poor on the road throughout the season.

Ashley Nathanial-George has made a big impact since coming back into the side with goals against Notts County and Carlisle showing his impact since making the starting eleven. Luke Gambin also injected some urgency into Reds’ play when he came off the bench at Carlisle and he will look to start what will be the last game of his loan spell from Luton. It will also be the last loan games for Matty Willock as he will return to Manchester United and Joe Maguire will return to Fleetwood after the Tranmere game.

It’s the last game of a long season, which has been extremely poor and very frustrating for all the fans to watch. The squad should hopefully improve over summer and aim higher for next season, but hopefully we can get a result in our final game.

Continue Reading

Match Reports

Walsh focuses on 'bigger picture' after Loxwood's loss to East Preston



Alex Walsh conceded that Loxwood’s 1-0 home defeat to East Preston in their final Premier Division game of the season was disappointing but stressed that his squad needed to focus on ‘the bigger picture’.

Dan Huet’s late strike secured victory for EP, in a fixture where both sides had nothing to play for.

The Magpies’ status in the top-flight of Sussex football was secured over Easter, but Walsh felt the loss was ‘a tough result to take’.

He said: “It was a shame to end the season on a defeat. I wanted to try and finish the season on a high.

“It was a tough result to take. I don’t think we deserved to lose the game.

“But our finishing and the performance of their keeper meant we didn’t deserve to win either.

“If we had played another 90 minutes on top we wouldn’t have scored.

“I said to the boys at the end of the game, let’s look at the bigger picture.

SEE ALSO Loxwood ‘can’t sit back and look how well they’ve done’ after securing survival | Broadbridge Heath hammer Loxwood in final home game | Loxwood’s draw to confirm survival ‘was a nice way to kick-off the bank holiday weekend’
“What we’ve done this season has been a remarkable effort from everybody.”

Loxwood had the better of the opening exchanges, with EP’s Dave Beaney blocking a shot and then keeper Tom Crook saving a shot from outside the area.

Crook was called into action again when another shot saw him make a smart save.

The first opportunity for the visitors came from a Scott Slaughter throw but Asa Nicholson couldn’t get his shot away.

The Magpies had a long-range shot which Crook again saved well before Sam Pigeon’s header went wide.

The second-half saw both teams cancel each other out and it took a fantastic strike from Huet to break the deadlock.

With seven minutes remaining, the EP player struck a sweet volley from the edge of the area to seal the three points.

Loxwood: Matthews, Dawson, Robinson, Smith, Boiling, Courtney, Cowan, Mutongerwa, Miller, Goldson, Morey. Subs: Hooper-Ridsdale, Bennett, Popham, Dunningham.

Continue Reading


© 2019 The Crawley Comet | Privacy