Delight at goal rush as Horsham net 38 times in 18 games along with loan and player news

DM18102945a.jpg. Football: Bostik League South East Division: Horsham v East Grinstead. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-181020-200528008
DM18102945a.jpg. Football: Bostik League South East Division: Horsham v East Grinstead. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-181020-200528008

It’s been a real goal rush for Horsham, who have found their scoring boots early this season much to the delight of manager Dominic Di Paola.

The Hornets have had ten different goalscorers in the Bostik League South East Division so far this season.

DM18102885a.jpg. Football: Bostik League South East Division: Horsham v East Grinstead. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-181020-200507008

DM18102885a.jpg. Football: Bostik League South East Division: Horsham v East Grinstead. Photo by Derek Martin Photography. SUS-181020-200507008

They have netted 39 times in 18 games in all competitions, failing to score just once in that time.

Strikers have always been hard to come by for Di Paola in his managerial career, but he believes he has struck the right note this season.

The signing of established goal-getter Chris Smith from South Park was a key one, along with the addition – for a second time – of Rob O’Toole.

It has given the Hornets some proven strikers to add to what seems to be goals coming from throughout the team.

Saturday’s 3-1 win over East Grinstead Town lifted them back up to 11th in table and well placed with games in hand.

Di Paola said: “Something we have had this year is goals and that has been part of our troubles before.

“When you are not playing well before this year, you would look at the side and could not see where goals were going to come from.

“Chris Smith has got six goals in seven starts and it gives you half a chance. If we can get him back to full fitness it’ll be huge.

“He came on for 20 minutes on Saturday and hit the post and scored to put the game to bed – it took the pressure off us.

“Rob is playing well as well up there and will strike up a good relationship with Chris. He always scores more in the second half of the season as well.”

There have been ten different goalscorers in the league so far this season – with Joe Shelley and Will Hoare never far away from notching and Harvey Sparks, Charlie Harris, Tyrell Richardson-Brown to name a few, all with an eye for goal.

Di Paola added: “I love that. I always said when we were playing in the County League that we never really had a striker, we always seemed to score from everywhere.

“Biff (Joe Shelley) hit 25 from midfield and if you got seven or eight others that got close to ten goals, that used to be enough to win things.

“Will Hoare and Joe have three or four already and Joey Taylor scored his first on Saturday so we are doing well on that front.

“I am really pleased in general with the way we are going at the moment, we know we aren’t going to win every week, but we are going in the right direction.”

The Horsham boss also gave an update on the player front, with the return of Lee Harding and Harvey Sparks imminent.

He explained: “We are just about okay numbers-wise at the moment.

“We did not have a full bench on Saturday, but we have more than enough in the group to cover.

“Harvey Sparks will be back on the 28th from his trip and Lee Harding (wrist) will be able to start training again a week Saturday.

“Charlie Farmer (knee) is not quite ready and when he comes back he will probably have to go out on loan. He has had one under-23s game since the beginning of September.”

The club also have a number of key players out on loan, on either the comeback trail from injury or getting much-needed game time.

Jack Hartley and Adam Hunt are both with Horsham YMCA, while Scott Kirkwood has recently signed for Shoreham.

Di Paola will be keeping an eye on all three with the view of bringing them back into the squad when they are fit, although there are no guarantees.

He added: “With Jack and Adam it all depends how it goes. Jack has been out since the beginning of February and not been able to completely secure a place with us.

“I suggested before the season started to go out on loan, but he wanted to stay and fight for a place, which I really respected, but he needs to play now.

“Hunty would have missed a year of football this month so needs to play and see what his body does.

“Scott Kirkwood is out on loan at Shoreham now as well. He signed down there last Thursday.

“Those are still all part of the squad, but we need to see how it goes.

“Dean Bown for example is one we will always keep an eye on, but I am not sure he would even come back now.

“He lives in Crawley and it is going well for him at YM – he is a key player in their team.

“It all depends when people go out on loan. They might enjoy playing their football elsewhere and become a main man in another team.

“Some players can’t get past the fact that when they go out on loan that is not the end at that particular club.”