Seaford Town overcome Mile Oak - and a couple of four-legged pitch invaders
On a highly-spirited return to competitive football, Seaford Town came away as deserved winners against Mile Oak in the first round of the SCFL Supplementary Cup - and even a couple of four-legged pitch invaders couldn't put them off their stride.
Two brilliant first-half goals helped the home side on their way to a convincing 3-0 victory, with manager Paul Wise describing a ‘perfect performance’ to mark his team’s return to action.
The opening stages saw Mile Oak on top for the most part, forcing Seaford into giving away numerous set pieces where the visitors were able to apply pressure from.
A couple of small dogs managing to stray from being walked nearby and get on to the pitch after 15 minutes but they were soon back with their owner and Seaford's terrier-like midfielders were able to take centre stage again.
With 25 minutes gone Mile Oak were given the perfect chance to make their dominance worthwhile, with a penalty being awarded after Seaford’s Ben Dartnall was penalised for a handball following a floated delivery from out wide.
The home side were spared however, with goalkeeper Jack Webb pulling off a fine save to his right to deny Ben Whitmore from the spot. A much-needed confidence boost for Seaford, who had looked uncomfortable in the opening stages.
The tide began to change for the home side on the half hour mark, with their first meaningful chance coming after a great run from Callum Edwards resulted in a good save by Mile Oak ‘keeper Aaron Stenning.
Within a matter of moments, Seaford did go on to take the lead, after an attempted clearance found Shaun Skipper at the edge of the box, who was on hand to lash one high into the far corner of the net.
Suddenly, the home side were on top and looked more and more likely to extend their lead. They did just that, as less than ten minutes after the first goal they had a second thanks to a brilliant solo goal from left-back Matt Holland, who darted through the Mile Oak defence, before firing past the keeper to double the home side’s advantage.
Seaford had control of the game, a large contrast to an opening where the visitors certainly looked to have the upper hand going forward.
With a two-goal lead at half time, Seaford looked to ensure that their advantage would not slip in the second period.
The home side came out in an assured fashion, continuing to find pockets of spaces in which they could threaten the Mile Oak defence.
Around the hour mark, and their pressure had paid off, this time with Billy Pout slotting in to make it three after a series of rebounded chances in the area.
Despite the efforts of the away side to find a way back into the game, they were unable to breach the resolute defence of Seaford, whose structure and organisation remained resolute for the vast majority of the match.
As time ran away from the visiting team to find a consolation, Seaford Town were eventually able to see out the game, with the 3-0 scoreline being an accurate reflection of the home side’s assertive returning display.