Horsham lacking firepower as they slip to second bottom

Horsham slipped to second-from-bottom in Division 1 of the South Premier as they suffered their fifth defeat of the season.

Thursday, 24th November 2016, 3:00 pm
Updated Tuesday, 29th November 2016, 10:26 am
Horshams Freddie Campbell felt he should have won a short corner after being brought down. Pic Steve Robards SR1633955 SUS-161114-115036001

A Chris Wiseman brace and Matt Murphy goal clinched Old Cranleighans a 3-0 victory as Horsham were again left to rue their goalscoring form.

As in previous weeks, Horsham had their share of possession and played controlled hockey. But they are not scoring goals and, therefore, are not winning games.

Games are also taking on a sense of déjà vu. Last weekend Dan Humphries was adjudged to have given away a penalty flick. This week he was called for stopping the ball on the line with his foot – although his fellow defenders claimed it was his stick.

Last weekend Freddie Campbell made a run that beat three defenders before being bought down just outside the D with no short corner awarded. This week an almost identical incident happened.

Overall it was a cagey affair, neither side wanting to lose. Old Cranleighans’ first goal came when Horsham were convinced they were going to be awarded a penalty corner. But the whistle never came, the hosts broke and scored. Then came the disputed penalty and Horsham were 2-0 down at the turnaround.

They were still very much in the game and when manager Al Campbell changed-up the formation, went to three at the back, and moved coach Dom Male into the forward line, Horsham dominated possession.

Yet no matter how threatening they looked in the last quarter of the pitch, they rarely got into the red zone.

With Horsham fully committed a turnover and break led to the final home goal that didn’t really signify. At this end of the division goal difference seems unlikely to come into play.

Campbell said: “This time last season we had a very similar dry spell. But then we turned it around and won promotion.

“This year all we’re trying to do is stay up and it’s better that we hit another bad patch now while we have the time to get things sorted.

“Jack Dean, who led the Horsham attack and the league scoring stats last season, was in town last weekend on a visit home from Newcastle University. Unfortunately for Horsham he was playing football. He is sadly missed.”