Cooper double helps United to derby joy

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Eastbourne United AFC have extended their unbeaten league run to seven games with a hard-fought 3-2 victory over local rivals Seaford Town.

United welcomed back Simon Catt, Shaun Lee and Danny Simmonds to the starting line-up, with new signing and former Brighton & Hove Albion player Stuart Myall taking his place on the substitutes bench.

United began strongly and after nine minutes Catt found space in the area to hit a shot that wrong-footed the visiting ‘keeper Sheldon Levett to give United the lead.

Catt was again involved in United’s second goal as a poor clearance from Levett went straight to the midfielder, and despite the close attention of two Seaford defenders, Catt turned to find Pete Cooper with an inch-perfect pass who rifled home into the top right for his 10th league goal of the season.

It wasn’t to be long until United got there third, with arguably the goal of the match.

A deep Pete Featherstone free-kick was well controlled by Cooper on the edge of the box, who proceeded to turn while being held by a visiting defence and fire home a curling effort as United appeared to be cruising towards a routine victory.

A rash free-kick given away on the stroke of half-time allowed Seaford back into the match as United old boy James McKenzie struck through the wall to raise visiting spirits with their first attempt of the match.

A rejuvenated Seaford grabbed a second goal after the interval when another former United player Nathan Milroy placed home an Olly Davies cross.

United introduced Stuart Myall and Jamie Bunn midway through the second half and Bunn was immediately involved as his through ball found Divall, but the winger put his strike over the bar.

With time running out, Seaford pushed men forward in search of an equaliser and came close when a needless free-kick was given away in a similar position to McKenzie’s in the first half.

But this time the former United player put his effort past Adam Sargent’s upright.