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Blues in first league loss; Reserves crush Arrows

(January 08, 2022)

Lindfield 3 - 1 Sidley United - MSFL Premier Division 

It was not a happy start to the new year on the pitch for Sidley United as they suffered a first league loss of the season, going down 3 - 1 to Lindfield.

The Blues fell behind after 15 minutes when Andy Brown latched onto a through ball and finished through the legs of goalkeeper Dan Hutchins. And minutes later Blues were 2 down as Jon Cunningham burst past his defender and smashed a shot into the bottom corner.

On 40 minutes Ryan Novis cleverly kept the ball in play when he could have taken the easy option of a corner and he whipped in a lovely ball for Brown to nod home from 6 yards out. Sidley did get a lifeline to get back in the game when Chris Cumming-Bart scored in stoppage time.

Blues would have hoped the tide would turn in the second half and were on the offensive in the second half but they went 4 - 1 down as Cunningham scored a near-replica of his first goal on 70 minutes.

Zac McEniry headed home on 80 minutes to give Sidley faint hope of a comeback and this increased as the game reached stoppage time when Sidley were awarded a penalty which Paul Rogers converted despite the goalkeeper getting a hand to his strike.

However Sidley just didn't have the time to strike again and Lindfield held on to claim the points. The Blues must pick themselves up as they face another tough test when they take on local rivals Hollington United next weekend.

Sidley Team: Hutchins, Walker, Featherstone, McEniry, Elliott-Noye, McCue, Carey, S Crabb, Capon, Cumming-Bart, Rogers. Subs: N Crabb, Ellis. 

Sidley United II 5 - 1 SC Pass & Move Arrows

Sidley United II's moved into second in the table on the back of a thumping win over SC Pass & Move Arrows. 

The morning downpour rarely threatened a postponement as Hooe Rec kept up its reputation of being one of the best around for drainage. Sidley started the half by kicking against the wind and, being penned back in by the conditions, the Blues found themselves a goal down when Pip Hatch beat the offside trap and slotted past the onrushing Ritchie Gray.
 
Soon after the restart Alex Williams found himself having to leave the pitch with an elbow injury but his replacement George Rayner soo made an instant impact. The ball found Rayner in the box only to see his shot was blocked into the path of Sean Baldwin whose ferocious shot rifled into the roof of the net leaving the keeper with no chance of keeping it out before half time.
 
Conditions continued to batter the pitch as the game wore on, but it still continued to hold up. The second half began with Pass & Move instantly on the attack down the left hand side but the ball into the box was gathered by Gray. Assessing the conditions his drop kick was initially supposed to set Williams and Ash Elphick on the counter attack but his monstrous kick bounced on the edge of the penalty area and looped over the away goalkeeper and into the net to spark wild scenes.
 
The Blues could sense there were more goals in this game and they were soon 3 - 1 up when Baldwin’s 30 yard thunderous free kick was hit straight down the throat of the keeper who could only block it into the path of Simon Tomlinson who reacted quickest to strike the ball into the net.
 
Sidley struck once again; a pinpoint corner from Baldwin found the head of Tomlinson who rose highest out of everyone to score his second of the game. And not long before the full time whistle went the Blues grabbed a fifth with a near carbon copy of the fourth goal - this time Baldwin's corner was about to be met once again by Tomlinson who was hauled down to the ground but it mattered little as the ball fell to Elphick who headed through the crowd and into the net as Blues began the new year with 3 points in very difficult conditions.
 
The Dynamic Scaffolding ‘Men of the Match’ were Ritchie Gray and Simon Tomlinson for their solid contributions in both attack and defence.
 
Sidley Team: Gray, Opaye-Tetteh, Corke, Vincent, Ransom, Stovell, Tomlinson, Wells, Elphick, Baldwin, Williams. Subs: Hempe, Rayner.

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