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Battling Blues defeat Hollington

(November 26, 2016)

Hollington United 0 - 1 Sidley United- ESFL Premier Division 

Sidley United became the first side to take points from leaders Hollington United with James Bailey's late strike capping a focussed performance which also saw the Blues keep their first clean sheet of the season.

With Joe Rogers back in goal, John Carey slotted into central defence as Chris Sanderson returned to midfield and the Blues had a composed look about them throughout the game. 

Hollington played ex Hastings United manager Sean Ray up front but appeared to get frustrated with their own direct style which was producing little effect.

The first half saw Sidley come closest as Bailey hit the post from an acute angle after good work by Lee Roberts to win the ball high up the pitch.

Hollington had produced little but there was always the sense that if the Blues switched off they could be punished. However they continued their positive play and the Hollington goalkeeper had to be alert to deny Bailey and Sanderson early in the second period.

As the game progressed Hollington players began arguing amongst themselves and Steve Johnson was substituted after arguing with his managers on the touchline. Blues meanwhile kept coming forward, believing that they could find the goal to win the game.

And with 8 minutes to go they did. A bit of pinball in the area eventually saw the ball fall to Bailey who stabbed the ball home from close range. Sidley still had to survive a tense final few minutes as Hollington pressed but they gamely held on for an excellent win.

If the Blues can consistently play with that level of concentration then they should win more games than they lose this season, especially as they have now played the top two sides twice already this season. Next up Sidley welcome Robertsbridge United to Hooe Rec. 

Sidley Team: Rogers, Day, Cole, Carey, Eldridge, Sanderson, O'Callaghan, Elphick, Roberts (Brockhurst), Bailey, Scrace.

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