Lavant had to work hard Saturday to grind out a result against a Milland side that proved hard to breakdown.
Lavant were in fact slow to start the game and an early misunderstanding could have led to the visitors taking an early lead. The game appeared to stop for offside, however referee Luke Pierce never blew his whistle and waved play on, as Milland broke clear down the left wing. The subsequent cross was however punched clear and to safety by Martin Pullen in the Lavant goal.
This early scare forced the home side to wake up, however it still took 25 minutes before they really threatened the Milland goal. A mike Neville free kick was met in the box by Tom Parker who headed just inches wide of the post. Then ten minutes later Oli Haggar weaved his way into the six yard box squaring the ball to Ross Lines who’s shot again went just wide of the goal.
Lavant were then awarded a penalty for a push in the box. Tom Parker’s spot kick however was well saved by the Milland keeper and the loose ball was scrambled to safety, as Lavant frustrating day continued.
With half time looming and the frustration setting in for the home side Mike Neville finally broke the deadlock running in to meet Haggar’s cross heading against the post with the ball spinning across goal and thankfully into the net, 1-0. Minutes later Lavant could have been two up when Ben Thomas’s corner kick was headed against the cross bar by Daryl Hall.
The second half was again very much like the first. Milland defended in numbers making it very hard for Lavant to break them down, but they never really threatened the Lavant goal.
Minutes from the restart saw Dave Kennard’s header was well saved. Ross Lines also came close with a header, and a good move involving Thomas, Neville and Martin Ayers should have saw Lavant extend their lead, but again Milland held on.
Two nil up and the pressure was lifted of the homeside as they started to play some of their best football of the game exerted continued pressure on the Milland goal. Lavant should have made it 3-0 when the ball was clearly handled off the line but somehow the incident was unseen by referee Pierce.
Lavant brought on all three subs, Swain, Pinder and Richardson in an effort to capitalise on a tiring Milland team but again the visitor’s defended in numbers right to the final whistle.
Lavant left the pitch somewhat frustrated with their display in front of the home crowd especially after the previous weeks performance. However on reflection they had won the game by two clear goals and not conceded against a team who defended well and made it hard to play football for much of the match.
Team: M.Pullen, D.Hall, M.Court, L.Hayward, M.Neville, D.Kennard, M.Ayers, B.Thomas, O.Haggar, T.Parker, R.Lines. Subs: C.Swain, R.Pinder, M.Richardson.