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Blues held to draw; Reserves begin with win

(September 04, 2021)

AFC Southwick 1 - 1 Sidley United - MSFL Premier Division

Sidley's winning start to the campaign came to an end as they were held to a 1 - 1 draw by Southwick in a reunion of the former County league sides.

On a warm afternoon at the home of Whitehawk FC, both sides found it tough to create clear cut chances in the first half. A succession of Sidley corners midway through suggested they might have more of the momentum but nothing really came of them.

Both sides were really restricted to efforts from distance with a curling Chris Cumming-Bart effort for Sidley going just over the bar before Southwick had an opportunity late on in the half which was comfortably dealt with by Blues keeper Phil Hawkins. 

In the second half though the game came more to life. Sidley had good opportunities through Charlie Cornford and Alan Foster early on but were then hit by Southwick who took the lead on 61 minutes. A corner from the left was met by a header which Hawkins did brilliantly to save but Jordan Groom was on hand to smash the ball into the roof of the net much to the delight of the home fans. 

That might have been the wake up call Sidley needed as only a great double save by home goalkeeper Josh Measor prevented Blues from levelling almost immediately. 

However Measor was beaten on 70 minutes when Nathan Crabb was played through on goal with Measor coming out to meet him and appearing to hande the ball outside the area. The referee chose to allow play to continue with Crabb rolling the ball into the empty net and possibly sparing Measor a potential red card.

Sidley had the lions share of the play from them on and another late winner was looking a distinct possibility as Southwick were pinned in their own area. However it wasn't to be this week as Southwick held on for a deserved draw. The Blues slip to second place in the table as a result of Ringmer's win. 

Sidley travel to Balcombe next week. 

Sidley Team: Hawkins, Walker, McEniry, Featherstone, Carey, Baldwin, Foster, Ellis, Cumming-Bart, Cornford, Rogers. Subs: S Crabb, N Crabb, McCue, Elphick.

Bexhill A.A.C 2 - 4 Sidley United II - ESFL Division One

Sidley United II's kicked off their ESFL campaign with an impressive win over Bexhill A.A.C.

The Blues raced into a four goal lead at Buxton Drive in the first half. Gary Hempe opened the scoring on 2 minutes when he turned home a low driven free kick by Alex Williams. Blues doubled their lead on 12 minutes as a clever corner by Hempe found debutant Ashley Carey with a thunderous header before a defence splitting pass from Joe Vincent found another debutant Sam Gilbert who clinically and calmly slotted past the onrushing goalkeeper to make it 3 - 0.

The Blues lost their goalkeeper Richie Gray to injury with Carey taking over between the sticks. But a well worked routine in midfield left Simon Tomlinson to feed Williams to finish past the goalkeeper to make it 4 - 0. Bexhill clawed one back before half time in a half dominated by the Blues.

In the second half a corner from AAC eluded everyone and found it's way into the Sidley goal. This sparked Bexhill into life but Sidley held on to claim the three points.

The Dynamic Scaffolding Man of the Match was Graeme Stovell with a solid all round display in the heart of the Sidley midfield.

Sidley Team: Gray, Opaye-Tetteh, Trickett, Carey, Hempe, Vincent, Stovell, Corke, Tomlinson, Gilbert, Williams. Subs: Chasumba, Mabb.

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