Sussex County League: Division One
| Shoreham 2 |
MacMillan 48(p), 54
|| Horsham YMCA 1 |
M Smith 22
Crane sent off 85
18th August2012 Location:
Middle Road, Shoreham
Horsham YMCA failed to bounce back from their humiliating FA Cup defeat last week, as they were beaten 2-1 away at Shoreham in a return to league action.
YM were without the unavailable Kevin Burgess, Liam Hunter and Mike Gardner, so Lewis Scally and Dan Smith deputised in midfield, Dean Cox filled in at left back, and new signing Martin Smith began on the wing.
And it was Smith, recently signed from Croydon, who gave YM the perfect start, cutting in from the left flank and expertly firing the ball inside the far post to give the visitors the lead on his debut.
Several further first half chances went to waste, and YM were made to rue those opportunities, as immediately after the break, two quick Shoreham goals from Aaron MacMillan put the Musselmen in front.
The striker first converted from the spot after Dan Sullivan was harshly penalised for tugging back on a Shoreham player in the box, before a breakaway second saw the front man coolly slot the ball past Simon Lockwood in the YM goal.
YM boss, Peter Buckland, said, "The ref gave the most bizarre penalty - it bewildered everybody. There was a lot of pushing and shoving in the box, and their forward was pushing the hell out of Dan Sullivan, so he gave him a little nudge back and the ref awarded a penalty. That just let them straight back into the game.
"And to compound the decision, two minutes later we broke up the other end, Martin [Smith] went clean through and their guy took him down from behind in the box, but the ref didn't give a thing. It's quite upsetting really, but it was just one of those days."
The latter stages saw a Crane header hit the woodwork and clearly bounce down over the Shoreham line, and a Tim Martin effort well blocked by the Musselmen 'keeper, before YM's frustration was compounded late on when Crane saw red for a second bookable offence.
"The game could have gone many ways after the debacle of last week, and the emphasis was just getting the players' confidence back." Buckland added. "It wasn't a measured performance, but we put in a sterling effort.
"We were worth at least a point, but the most important thing that came out of it was a good performance. There are a lot of teams who are worse off than us. We've played three games, with only one at home, and we've won one, lost one and drawn one. That's a steady start."
YM now face a tough fixture at home to unbeaten Redhill on Tuesday evening.
Lockwood, Dugdale (c), Hartt, Crane, Cox, D. Smith (Martin), Sullivan, Scally (Stillwell), M. Smith, Wright (Lowe), L. Smith
Unused Subs: Evans, Aquilina