Soft goals and outstanding keeping deny Horsham

In their bid for survival in South League Premier Division 1, Horsham missed out on the opportunity to steal a march on the team just above them, soft goals again heralding their downfall. To make things worse, the two goals were conceded early, giving Horsham a steep hill to climb to grab the much needed three points, but that would have been entirely possible if the gods had smiled. Horsham was without player-coach Dom Male, getting to grips with newly delivered fatherhood, but the defence and midfield were otherwise intact, yet caught napping. With Horsham subsequently in the ascendancy, this season’s signing Ellis Woolley reduced the deficit to 2-1 at the break with his 12th goal in club colours. And, on resumption, Horsham came out strongly and had the lion’s share of possession, only to be thwarted by the home goalkeeper, a Sean Pearcy screamer being spectacularly denied before a jinking John Burroughs attempt was also nullified. Then Cirdec Atkinson was narrowly unable to connect with a Freddie Campbell supply ahead of Joey Humphreys’ inputs that would have been converted on most occasions. Frustrated Horsham Team Manager Al Campbell told the District Post: “Their keeper has got it in for us – we bring out the very best in him! In addition to earlier top saves, he pulled off another miracle to deny a Woolley rocket destined for the top left corner. It’s puzzling – he’s been letting in three goals a game, but we’ve only got past him twice in two encounters this season!”

Fortunately, results elsewhere were favourable, but Horsham remains tenth, with, like most of their nearest rivals in the table, a game in hand. With five games to play, three of which are against teams also uncertain of staying in the division, Horsham return home tomorrow (Saturday, February 4) to play seventh-placed Old Cranleighans, who lost 3-0 to London Edwardians last Saturday but beat Horsham by the same score at Battersea Park in November.

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