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Haven out but they shouldn’t be down

By Pitchside View

PEACEHAVEN & TELSCOMBE’S run in the FA Cup was extinguished at the first hurdle on Saturday.

They bowed out of the world’s oldest cup competition 3-0 away to Middlesex outfit, Spelthorne Sports.

This was always potentially going to be a tough encounter and for the first 20 minutes Peacehaven weathered an onslaught from the home side, who like Haven played neat possession football.

For all Spelthorne’s intent to get an early goal, Peacehaven held firm. The visitors did have a scare in the 17th minute when the home side had the ball in the net but it was ruled offside.

Peacehaven were now coming more into the game and on 20 minutes Marcus Richmond went close with a header which forced Taylor in the home goal to make a smart save.

Peacehaven were beginning to dominate proceedings and were looking particularly dangerous from set pieces. And throughout the game Frazer Massen, playing his first game of the season, caused panic every time one of his trademark long throws arrowed into the penalty area.

With 34 minutes played a Sid Adams corner created havoc in the home side’s box. Conor Martin, given a start after his impressive showing in midweek, swung at the ball but it was cleared off the line. And then just two minutes later, Jack Phillips went close with a header when a combined clearance from the home keeper and defender saw the ball go over the bar.

By now Haven had taken the sting out of the game and were dominating proceedings and looked threatening. But Spelthorne didn’t need much of an opportunity to show how dangerous they could be, and a brilliant save from Alieu Secka on the stroke of half-time saw him dive to his right and claw the ball out of the air to prevent a goal.

Half time: Spelthorne Sports 0, Peacehaven & Telscombe 0.

Peacehaven began the second period as they had finished the first and Richmond nearly opened the scoring, but a last ditch tackle prevented him scoring.

On 49 minutes, the impressive Martin again went close as his strike went just over the bar. Jake Legrange was looking dangerous as he continually bombed down the right to the goal line but his excellent crosses came to nothing. Similarly, Sid Adams was also causing problems on the left hand side and the thirty or so Peacehaven fans who had made the 70 mile trip felt it was only a matter of time until Peacehaven scored.

Spelthorne were now starting to show and Secka made a couple of decent saves in quick succession to deny the home side.

And then in the 64th minute Spelthorne struck. A vicious angled shot came into the box, Secka parried and Jordan Espirit was on hand with the follow up tap in.

Peacehaven still continued to take the game to the visitors but now they looked less cohesive and less threatening. And then on 74 minutes, Peacehaven were two down. A Spelthorne forward was put through, Secka came out of his goal but was adjudged to have fouled the on-rushing player.

Jake Flatman stepped up to take the kick and slammed it to Secka’s right. The Haven keeper got a hand to it but couldn’t prevent the goal.

By now Peacehaven looked a pale shadow of the side that had been battling earlier on. Spelthorne’s third came after Phillips grabbed the shirt of a Spelthorne player just outside the box. From the resulting free kick the ball was driven hard and low into the box, Secka could only push the ball away for Espirit to get his second of the game.

Peacehaven did have a late flurry which saw Adams go close on two occasions and substitute Callum Hart had an effort saved. But it was not to be.

Peacehaven will take plenty of positives out of the game and will re-group and be ready for their next game when Hassocks visit The Sports Park on Saturday August 18.

Peacehaven & Telscombe: Secka, Kilwa, Adams, Massen, Lira, Phillips, Legrange, Grant, Martin, Richmond, Ford. Subs: Hart, Muller, Brocklebank, Tait, Dinnage, Tyrell, Burton.

Updated 10:29 - 12 Aug 2018 by Pitchside View

Where next?

Pictures from Saturday's game YOU CAN now view a selection of pictures from Saturday's game.
The fight for the FA Cup begins this weekend ONE HUNDRED and eighty four extra preliminary round ties of the oldest cup competition in the world will take place this weekend.


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