Lancing Starting XI
Mitch Bromage, Darius Goldsmith, Will Berry, Liam Hendy, Harrison Parker, Darren Budd, Ebou Jallow, Josh Gould, Tom Caplin, Ben Connolly, Lew Finney
Subs: Matt Daniel, Bradley Campbell-Francis, Conrad Honore, Dave Sharman, Finn
Daniels – Yeoman
This was the second match in the Group. Both sides had won their opening games, Lancing beating East Preston 2-1 and Pagham coming out on top against Steyning 1-0.
With Mo Juwara nursing a slight injury, Harrison Parker stepped in to the back four for his first game since the return of football. Tom Caplin and Josh Gould started and there was a place on the bench for Dave Sharman.
Lancing’s first serious foray into the Pagham box came when a free kick was awarded for a foul on Harrison Parker. Lew Finney had put him clear wide on the left and he was felled with a late tackle just outside the visitor’s box. The ball was played into the six-yard area and it ricocheted around before being sent clear.
Ash Hawkes brought the first save from Mitch Bromage, at full stretch who was able to grasp the ball to prevent it rolling free.
On 24 minutes a decision by referee Joel Lamping was to have a major impact on the game. Lew Finney had shown some clever skills turning away from a couple of challenges to bring the ball out of the Lancing penalty area and as he continued, he turned into a Pagham player who fell to the ground. There followed quite a kerfuffle with Pagham players pushing and jostling Lew and their goalkeeper rushing from his goal line to become embroiled in the set to. The referee considered Lew to have been guilty of dangerous play and brandished a red card.
From the resultant free kick, the ball was headed back across the face of the Lancing goal. The slightest touch would have led to a Pagham goal but the ball eluded everyone. At the other end, Ben Connolly was able to resist a strong challenge and get in a low shot which keeper Conor Kelly was able to get down to.
On 34 minutes Lancing came close to taking the lead. Tom Caplin was tripped as he was making a strong run towards the Pagham penalty area. Darren Budd curled his free kick toward the keeper’s right hand upright but he was just able to reach the ball and put it behind for a corner. A promising attack initiated by a well-placed through ball from Liam Hendy to Harrison Parker, breaking into space on Lancing’s left flank, came to a disappointing end when the flag was raised for offside. As the half ended Pagham were beginning to make their extra man count and Lancing were forced back on the defensive.
Matt Daniel was introduced for the second half, replacing Ebou Jallow. The half began promisingly for Lancing with Darius and Tom Caplin combining well to set up Josh Gould for a shot on goal. It was well struck but at a nice height for the keeper to get his hands to.
It was Mitch in the Lancing goal who was next called into action. He was under pressure from a corner and was unable to hold on to the ball. It dropped near the goal line but Darius was on hand to clear it. Joseph Clark for Pagham made a strong run towards the Lancing goal but Mitch was down bravely to save, being injured in the process. Mitch’s need for treatment from physio Georgie somehow seemed to incense his opposite number in the Pagham goal.
Harrison Parker was guilty of a late challenge and received a yellow card. Shortly afterwards on 59 minutes, he and Josh Gould were replaced by Conrad Honore and Bradley Campbell-Francis.
Shortly afterwards Pagham took the lead, Joe Bennett heading home. Their lead was short lived. Bradley beat his man on the bye line. His cross led to a shot on goal which was blocked but the ball reached Will Berry, who had begun the move and who lashed it home on 66 minutes.
Finn Daniels-Yeoman came on for Ben Connolly on 72 minutes. Bradley was having a major influence as Lancing strove for a winner, using his pace and quick movement to get into some dangerous positions in the Pagham box. He bamboozled one defender who was tempted into committing a foul to halt his run towards the box. Tom Caplin took the free kick but could not make it count.
As the game entered its final 10 minutes Pagham’s number four, Joseph Clarke went on a determined run, evading a couple of tackles, and as the ball came back to him after he had laid it inside, he hit it powerfully, beyond Mitch’s desperate dive, into the keeper’s bottom right corner.
The fresh legs of Brad, Conrad, Finn and Matt were testing the visitors’ resilience and they did not hesitate to resort to some questionable challenges to stop them. Lancing kept up the pressure until the final whistle but Pagham were well organised and Lancing could not get any clear strikes on goal.
So Pagham top Group B with 6 points, with Lancing and Steyning behind with 3 points each. A lot still to play for after the all-important Build Base Vase match. There is little doubt that the loss of Lew Finney was a major blow to Lancing, even though their performance more than compensated for being reduced to 10 men. More worrying was the prospect of losing Lew for the FA Vase. He should be available for the Flackwell fixture but will miss the next round, if Lancing progress, and two supplementary shield fixtures.
I have taken the liberty of selecting Will Berry as MOM. A solid defensive performance, capped by an excellent goal.
p.s. apologies to Liam Hendy for somehow missing him out from the starting XI at East Preston.
Match Reporter: Dave Wilmott
Our thanks to Lancing FC Committee Member Dave for his report.