Returning defenders boost free-scoring Broadbridge Heath in AFC Uckfield win

Broadbrideg Heath FC. Javlon Cambell. Pic Steve Robards SR1726848 SUS-170611-162536001
Broadbrideg Heath FC. Javlon Cambell. Pic Steve Robards SR1726848 SUS-170611-162536001

An already free-scoring Broadbridge Heath are optimistic about climbing the table with defenders returning in their 4-1 win over AFC Uckfield.

Steve Painter was able to announce an unchanged team for only the second time this season as Tim Martin and Darren Helsdown continued in the full-back births.

New signing Javlon Cambell continued his progress towards full fitness alongside Devon Fender up front in the Premier Division clash.

For the first half hour Heath played well without being able to carve out an opener with Fender’s header being the closest they came to beating the visitor’s keeper.

The visitors had hit the bar in the fourth minute, but Michael Chester appeared to have the shot covered.

As half-time approached, Heath began to lose patience and resorted to too many long balls into an Uckfield defence.

Painter’s half-time talk must have encouraged his team to shorten their game as they came out and began to pass the ball around and switch play much more confidently.

It was rather against the run of play when Matt Barbosa scored from close range after a dangerous low cross had squirmed away from Chester’s grasp.

Heath continued to move the ball around at speed and four minutes later, Helsdown was released down the left to play a slide pass to Alex Parson, who side footed the ball into the bottom corner.

Heath took control and on 55 minutes a free kick from Scott Weller was only half cleared by the visitor’s defence and top scorer Fender pounced to give Heath the lead.

An exquisite one-two between Weller and George Cousins set the former free down the left and the midfielder delivered the perfect cross for Campbell to open his account for his new club and make it 3-1.

However, the best goal of the day was the last where some intricate passing between Mitchell Clark, Andre Elkana and Cousins finished with the ex-Brighton player dancing through the visitor’s defence and squeezing home between the on-rushing goalkeeper and the post to make it 4-1 and take his tally for the season to 11.

Assistant manager Sam Chapman said: “Fender now has 15 goals and it is doubtful whether the Bears have ever had two players with such goalscoring totals by the first week of November before.

“And with Campbell already showing what a class act he can be, the attacking side of this side appears to be in good shape.

“With most of the defenders now available, Heath can be optimistic about moving up the table and hopefully progressing in the three cups they are still in.”

That started with the next round of the Sussex Senior Cup on Tuesday and then the much-anticipated visit to Thatcham in the FA Vase, by which time Heath should have another new signing.

Heath: Chester, Martin, Helsdown, Chester, Flack, Howard-Bold, Weller (Elkana), Parsons, Fender, Cousins (Clark), Cambell (Sandell).