Lavant 2 Henfield 1

Tom Parker points the way Lavant vs Henfield 130210 Web photo

Tom Parker points the way

Unlike their opponents, Lavant had not played a game since 13 December last year. Right from kick off Henfield’s tactics were revealed. With big strong defenders and midfielders, they physically scrapped for the ball and pumped it over the top for Rob Peckham to run onto. Lavant central defenders Matt Court and Shaun Gooding dealt with this threat, but Henfield were dominant in midfield and the Chichester side fell into the visitor’s style of play.

Dave Knight on the ball Lavantvs Henfield 130210

Dave Knight on the ball

With the first half goalless, the game was changed when Court chopped down Warne in the box and Simon Price dispatched the spot kick on 47 minutes to put Henfield ahead, 0-1.

For Lavant, it was the best thing that could have happened. Dave Kennard and Ben Evans came alive in midfield for the homeside as Lavant finally kept the ball down and played a more composed passing game.

Then the Chichester side were awarded a free-kick outside the “D” and Tom Parker’s effort was spilled by ‘keeper, Kevin Thorns, and Gooding pounced to make the score level on 50 minutes, 1-1.

Parker was back again 5 minutes later to capitalise on a Ross Lines cross and fire home the winner from close range, 2-1.

In the latter part of the game Lavant were forced to make changes bringing on Shaun Massey and Justin Walsh to replace firstly Gooding who limped of injured and then Ben Evans who received a serious knee injury and was taken to hospital.

The enforced changes never stopped the homeside from pushing forward and trying to play football and Lavant could have scored at least 3 more times before the final whistle, but they squandered gilt-edged chances in front of goal, nevertheless in the end gaining the 3 point win.

Team: C.Bowles, G.Ockwell, S.Gooding, M.Court, M.Hine, D.Knight, D.Kennard, B.Evans, L.Weller; T.Parker, R.Lines. Subs: S.Massey, J.Walsh and T. Sheppard.

Selsey FC A 2 Lavant Reserves 0

On a cold Saturday afternoon in February, this was going to be a game too warm the away supporters on the touchline.

With Selsey fielding a strong side, Lavant were likely to struggle from the start in this encounter after being plagued by injures the week before and having to field an almost completely different side from the one that faced Selsey only one month earlier.

Straight from kick off the Selsey players took the game too Lavant and they played some nice attractive football, ensuring Lavant were on the back foot defending their goal, whilst the homeside were working hard to forge a number of changes.

Selsey should have taken the lead as one chance saw their striker facing an open goal but somehow his effort went wide of goal, to the relief of the visitors.

This was only a stay of execution as on 30 minutes a poor goal clearance out of the Lavant defence went straight to a Selsey player, as he then proceeded to run in on goal and slot the ball home past keeper Tom Turner, 1-0.

This spurred Lavant into action as they once more found their passion to win the ball, but the passing game wasn’t to be, as Selsey matched the visitor’s effort and worked hard to ensure they had no time on the ball to settle.

As a result the last 15 minutes of the half ended in deadlock with the homeside going into break with a deservedly one nil lead.

The second half started the brighter for Lavant with Mel Milburn and Martin Pullen making a change, bringing on Chris Withall to bolster the attack.

Two good chances then fell to the Lavant, both to Robbie Pinder, but on both occasions his effort went just agonisingly just over the cross bar. Then a poor clearance from the injured Lavant keeper Turner fell to Selsey, as they once more capitalised on the mistake making it two nil to the home side on 65 minutes.

Even with the keeper and also their centre back both going off injured Lavant still pressed Selsey trying for the elusive goal. After a gritty midfield display chances just weren’t being carved out and after yet another injury to the visitors, a mix up in communication followed between the mangers and Lavant ended up playing the last 20 minutes with only 10 players, all of which played into the hands of Selsey who saw out the remaining minutes of the game to claim all three valuable points.

Milburn and Pullen said of the players after the game. “Even with a depleted squad for today’s game against one of the best teams in the league, the players gave it their all; always believing they could still get something from the game right up to the final whistle, showing their real desire to win this encounter.”

Team: T. Turner, A.Strange, M.Ayers, N.Watts, D.Morris, D.Maclean, A.Waters, G.Pinder, S.Yaxley, R.Pinder, A.Yaxley. Subs: C.Withall, M.Pullen, S.Eastwood.

Saturdays Results

6th February

Division 1:
Faygate Utd 3, Fishbourne 5
Hunston CC 4, Partridge Green 1
Watersfield 5, Henfield 0
West Chiltington 1, Ashington Rovers 1
Wittering Utd v Angmering – postponed.

Division 4 South:
Fishbourne II 0, Coal Exchange 1
Lavant II 4, Tangmere 0
Lodsworth II 2, Yapton II 6
Milland 2, Selsey FC A 2.