A week that promised so much but delivered so little

Eastbourne Town boss Danny Bloor is refusing to panic after consecutive home defeats.

Town have dominated large periods of their last two home matches but have been left without any points from their matches against Hythe Town and Corinthian Casuals.

Bloor said, “We are going to give a team a real hiding and I’m sure it will happen soon.

“We are creating chances but not taking them. When we do, someone is going to be on the receiving end.

“Two defeats is tough for us but we are taking the positives.

“We also had eight players unavailable for Saturday. When they are back I’m sure our fortunes will change.”

This time it was Corinthian Casuals who left the Saffrons with all three points following Hythe Town’s similar escape on Tuesday.

On Saturday, a single second half strike was enough for the visitors to claim victory, ironically repeating their successful scoreline from their midweek visit to Ramsgate.

Eastbourne Town, who were missing several of what would be their starting line up, started brightly with a swirling wind causing control problems for all.

The first real chance fell to the visitor’s robust centre forward, Saheed Sankoh, who shot wide from a good position. The hosts responded quickly and Sam Crabb went as close as possible when, following a good knockdown, he beat the keeper to the ball however, he watched in agony as his toe-poked effort rolled against the post before being hacked away to safety.

This was the start of a period of sustained home pressure that then saw a fine Manton through ball beat the home defence allowing Nathan Crabb a free run on the Casuals goal.

Matt Mann, in the visitor’s goal, again did well to thwart the lively forward. From one of their well delivered Matt Geard corners, the ball found its way to Fogden who blazed over the bar, when unmarked at the far post. Almost immediately, Casuals broke through and Callum Christie had to be alert in smothering the attack well, only to need treatment for his efforts. Five minutes from the break Sankoh wasted the visitor’s best chance when he shot woefully wide, when well placed.

Just before the break, strong penalty appeals for handball were waved away by the referee, much to the surprise and dismay of home players and supporters alike.

TV pundit, Jimmy Hill, the president of the illustrious visitors would have been pleased to hear the half time whistle with the game scoreless.

The second period continued with the home team making the running. On 50 minutes, Nathan Crabb fashioned a chance from nothing, following a customary sharp turn but the resulting shot flew over Mann’s bar.

From a Geard free kick, Nathan Crabb then got across his marker, only to head powerfully at Mann who saved well. As happened on Tuesday, following almost constant Town pressure, the visitors scored from what was a rare attack.

On 61 minutes, from a throw in on the right, Casuals were allowed to travel across and through the Town back line, with Danny Green applying the killer touch for the goal, as the whole Town defence stood aghast.

As the hosts fought to regain parity, Greenfield hooked a shot over the ‘keeper only to see the ball cleared off the line. Then a fantastic block from full back, Tom Williams, foiled a Nathan Crabb chance. Shortly afterwards, marauding Town full back, Owen Kessack forced a corner before yet another fine save from Mann foiled a piledriver from home skipper, Greg Manton.

On 70 minutes Bloor made a double substitution with Curd and Laing replacing the injured Greenfield and the largely ineffective Freeman.

From a Curd knockdown Matt Geard shot over as the home side laid siege to the away team’s goal. However, the visitors proved to be very resolute and they continued to defend solidly. On 75 minutes yet another home free kick found an unmarked Fogden but the big centre back headed wide.

As the clock ran down and with Town still pressing forward, Casuals were able to exploit the gaps that appeared.

On 77 minutes Sankoh beat the home sides offside trap but he shot tamely wide. With 10 minutes remaining Curd caught his marker, Hassell, full in the face when challenging for a high ball. For their troubles Curd received a yellow card, Hassell a badly broken nose.

Dean Brooks replaced the injured Manton late on but, as hard as they tried, the hosts were unable to find the equaliser they so badly wanted.

They were left to ponder a most frustrating week that had promised much but one that ended bringing nothing but bitter disappointment.

TOWN: Christie 6, Davidson 7

Kessack 5, G.Manton (c) 6 (Brooks), Fogden 8, Freeman 5 (Curd), Denton 6 S.Crabb 6, Greenfield (Laing) 7, N.Crabb 6, Geard 6 MOM: Nick Fogden: another strong performance

Booked: Geard, Curd

Attendance: 158