New signings Liam Baitup and Gianluca Del-Gaudio became ‘super subs’ as they helped Eastbourne United return to winning ways against Mile Oak.
United, who lost their ten-match unbeaten run to table-topping East Preston last weekend, managed to grind out a victory thanks to a solitary goal from Pete Cooper.
But boss Paul Daubeney credited the result to the two new faces in the squad, Baitup and Del-Gaudio, who joined this week from Worthing United and Ringmer respectively.
“The substitutions certainly changed the match for us, which we’re very pleased about as they only had one training session with us.
“Liam had a few chances today and I’m sure once he gets his bearings back in front of goal he’ll start to put those chances away.”
It looked like the match was heading for a stalemate after both teams cancelled each other out in a first half with very few opportunities.
The deadlock wasn’t broken until the 73rd minute when Cooper nodded the home side ahead from just their second corner of the match.
Cooper was close to doubling the goal cushion a few minutes later from a free kick, but his effort rebounded off the crossbar. This victory is United’s third against Mile Oak in all competitions this season and Eastbourne’s seventh clean sheet in eight matches.
Daubeney said, “Mile Oak are a very hard side to play against as they put five men in midfield and four attacking. They tend to swarm you and become very hard to break down.
“It wasn’t a great spectacle but it’s the result that counts. Winning ugly is important sometimes and we managed to do that today.”
Eastbourne maintained their fourth-place spot in the Sussex County Football League Division Two and will be hoping to secure another three points when they travel to lowly Midhurst and Easebourne this weekend.
Eastbourne United: Sargent, Lee, Hughes, Jules, Featherstone, Stracey, Russell (Baitup), Trickett, Cooper, Catt, Bunn (Del-Gaudio) Referee: P. Lindsey Attendance: 51