A goal in each half from Shoreham extended Newhaven Reserves’ losing run to three matches and leaves them 5th from bottom of Reserve Section East.
Despite playing decent attacking football the Dockers could not convert chances at crucial times in the match and like last Saturday were caught on the counter attack, conceding two goals when the play should have been closed down quicker.
As ever further changes to the squad saw Calum Burnett, Gary Holmes and Jack Webber return to the starting line up, Graham Leach in goal and Paul O’Donnell return to the bench. Also making his first appearance in the squad this season was Under 18 Ian Robinson who was a substitute.
Early exchanges showed there was little between the two sides and neat attractive football from both teams set up a good game.
For the first twenty minutes Newhaven had the more potent attacks with a fine move down the left, involving Tomkins and Webber, resulted in a cross just volleyed wide at the near post by Lambert. Shortly after a pass inside from the left was allowed to run by Lambert and the onrushing Holmes drove a crisp shot which was straight at the keeper.
Matt Harrison was industrious in midfield and had a battling run into the area beating two defenders but his dangerous cross was cleared. Then just before the twenty minute mark Shoreham progressed up the field and when John Mulhern had time outside the box he wasn’t closed down and picked his shot into the bottom corner past the diving Leach to give the away side the lead.
A succession of Newhaven corners were well cleared by the Mussels as they continued to defend well. Then a good chance fell to Lambert as he was put through on the keeper but he couldn’t make contact as the keeper came out and the chance went begging (HT).
At half time Sam Leppard replaced the injured skipper Tom Mason and immediately in the second half gave the Dockers more drive going forward. Leppard linked the play between midfield and attack as the Dockers played at a high tempo in search of the equaliser.
There was excellent build up play from defence through midfield, to attack as Newhaven continued to play some fine football. Duchossoy and Webber were a threat down the flanks but their crosses were dealt with comfortably as the Newhaven attack failed to get across the front post.
Paul O’Donnell was introduced for Josh Tomkins with twenty minutes to go and it wasn’t long after that Shoreham scored their second. Johnny Buggy picked the ball up on the edge of the box and was allowed to turn and shoot into the bottom corner to make it 2-0. Calum Burnett was injured shortly after and had to be replaced by Luke Chatterley.
Newhaven continued to press froward and Gary Holmes had a couple of half chances including a rising left foot shot over the bar. Further crosses from both flanks continued to evade the Newhaven forwards and the game eventually ended in another disappointing defeat.
Next Saturday sees Rye United Reserves from Reserve Section Premier Division visit Fort Road in the second round of the Reserve Section Cup.
G. Leach, J.Mctiffen, J.Tomkins (P.O’Donnell), B.Knight, C.Burnett (L.Chatterly), T.Mason (c) (S.Leppard), M.Harrison, G.Holmes, D.Lambert, J.Webber, L.Duchossoy unused subs: I.Robinson, A.Cook