Short-of-options Horsham YMCA close out narrow victory at Newhaven

Horsham YMCA FC. Phil Johnson.  Pic Steve Robards  SR1627466 SUS-160926-164554001
Horsham YMCA FC. Phil Johnson. Pic Steve Robards SR1627466 SUS-160926-164554001

Horsham YMCA manager Peter Buckland has highlighted the importance of ‘shutting the back door’, after his side saw off Newhaven 1-0 for their third clean sheet in four league games.

On the back of three consecutive wins, YM travelled to The Trafalgar Ground full of confidence, and took the lead after just 10 minutes when in-form Phil Johnson tapped in from close range following a corner.

Due to a heavily depleted squad, YM lacked options in attack to make the scoreline more comfortable and were forced to defend their slender lead.

Buckland was delighted with the defensive and soldier like performance from his side. He said: “A few weeks ago, we realised we needed to start shutting the back door.

“We’re very limited in our options going forward through injuries, so we’ve had to really tighten up at the back. Week after week, we’ve been training on defending and that’s reflected in our league form.

“Saturday was possibly as hard as any game we’ve had this season against a very good Newhaven side.

“They done fantastically well. I can’t remember Newhaven having a shot on goal, that’s how well we defended high up the pitch. It was a tremendous performance.”

Buckland bemoaned the lack of options at his disposal to seal the win and add to the scoreline, but felt his side dealt with it ‘remarkably’.

He added: “It is very pleasing how we dealt with the squad we had to down there with. The bench was full up with casualties. Tom Gilbert and Dave Brown, for example, were on the bench for extreme emergencies but luckily didn’t need to risk them.

“Johnson and Schaaf continued to play with problems and all things considered it was a remarkable win. The first half belonged to us, we dominated it and we scored and good have had more.

“They changed their tactics second half, and I knew what they’d done, but I simply had no means at my disposal to shut the game out as I would have liked.

“I love playing twice a week but It’s proving quite hard on the squad because we’ve been playing twice for weeks when a bit of a rest might have done us some good.”

Horsham YMCA: Jeal, Carden, Evans, Donaghey, Harding, Gedling, Donaldson, Dugdale, Schaaf, Humphreys, Johnson (Cave 80).