‘Nightmare’ for Loxwood after early keeper injury

Loxwood manager Mark Beard  (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150510-170032008
Loxwood manager Mark Beard (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150510-170032008

Loxwood boss Mark Beard conceded it was a ‘nightmare’ evening as his side crashed out of the FA Vase with a 5-0 defeat at Littlehampton.

Debutant academy goalkeeper Harry Hilfiker went down injured after just four minutes and had to be replaced by under-21 manager Matt Camp in goal.

The match then saw Golds score with virtually every opportunity while Loxwood were denied by a superb showing by home stopper Jon Hendrick.

Littlehampton led 3-0 through goals from Ryan Bell, Scott Packer and Mitchell Hand at half-time and Nehniah McKenly-Burke and George Landais completed the scoring after the break.

Beard said: “Sam Smith was not there in the first place, so we called on the academy keeper, who is 18 and he got injured after four minutes.

“He tore his calf taking a goal-kick and we only had three other academy boys on the bench so Matt Camp, our under-21 manager, had to come on. You could not make it up, four minutes into a massive cup game, it just was not our night.

“Everything we threw at them their goalkeeper saved and every time they went forwards they scored. It was just a nightmare. Still we played some good football and had some quality chances, it just was not to be.

“Their goalkeeper pulled off four, what I would call, world class saves. I have no idea what he’s doing playing at this level. One I had even written down in my notebook that we had scored. In our goal, Matt did brilliant stepping in and he apologised after the game, but none of the goals were his fault.”

Beard is now hoping his side can get back to winning ways against Lancing on their 3G surface on Saturday. He added: “The pitch will suit our game so there are no excuses of bad pitches. It seems like we have not had a league game for ages, so that’s what our focus is on now along with the FA Vase.”

Loxwood: Hilfiker (Camp), Holvey, French, Scally, Courtney; Wood, Richeford, Swaine, Nurse (Barnard), Batchelor (Summerfield).

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