Torrential rain brings out the best in United

Eastbourne United manager Paul Daubeney admitted he felt a huge sense of relief as his side picked up their first victory of the season on Tuesday.

United were superb in torrential conditions at the Oval and won thanks to goals from Howard Davey, Jack McClean, Dan Bateman and Ben Hughes.

New signing from Ringmer Ryan Walton also impressed on his debut. The 6ft 4” striker was deployed as a lone front runner and spearheaded a five-man midfield formation.

Boss Daubeney said, “We fully deserved the win and I’m delighted for the lads.

“We played against the wind in the first half and did very well. The rain was horizontal and straight into our faces but you could see the lads were determined to do well.

“It lifts us off the bottom of the table and will give the lads a huge boost but one swallow does not make a summer. We need to build on this display and keep on improving.”

United elected to play against the wind in the first half and soon took the lead through Howard Davey. He capitalised on some neat build up play and fired in a low drive from the edge of the box.

But the visitors found a way back into the game as Sam Willett gave keeper Ray Collier no chance with an angled drive from the edge of the box.

The hosts restored their advantage four minutes later. Howard Davey delivered an inviting free kick into the box and young midfielder Jack McClean lashed the ball home to score his first goal in senior football.

In the second half the rain abated but Eastbourne’s attacking onslaught continued.

On the hour a long ball over the top of the Westfield defence picked out Dan Bateman and his delicate lob went over the ‘keeper and dipped under the bar for United’s third.

Four minutes later and it was 4-1 and it was certainly the pick of the bunch. Ben Hughes began the move from left back; he surged up the flank, took the return pass in his stride and fired a powerful shot beyond the keeper.

Daubeney added, “For once this season we put in a performance over the 90 minutes.

“I am delighted for the lads and delighted for Ryan. I think he was a bit frustrated not to get on the scoresheet but his overall play was superb.”

UNITED: Collier 7, Fry 6 (Starnes 6), Hughes 8, Jules 7, Smart 7, Stracey 8, Bateman 8 (W Davey), H Davey 8, Walton 8, Holles 7, McClean 7.

Ref: Duncan Fuller Att: 35