Reports from Sidley United's seasons in the Sussex County Football League

Season 2011/12


Pagham 3 - 0 Sidley United - Saturday 28th April 2012

On a day that saw Three Bridges clinch the County League title, Sidley United's campaign ended with defeat away to Pagham.

Blues manager John Lambert missed the game to be with his father who passed away that evening and although the players were determined to get a result for him, it was not to be. 

The three week gap since Sidley last played meant their match sharpness wasn't quite there and Pagham were denied three times in the opening 10 minutes as Blues goalkeeper Josh Willis denied Joe Briggs before Scott Murfin struck the crossbar and Dan Cruikshank cleared off the line.

Willis picked up an injury which required treatment and although he managed to continue Pagham struck the opening goal a few minutes later as Murfin tucked home. 

Willis did well to keep out a free kick from the edge of the area while Murfin also went close with an excellent shot on the turn. 

But in the second half the home side scored on 60 minutes as Briggs finished a good run with a lovely chipped finish and three minutes later Lewis Hyde turned home a goalmouth scramble to kill off the game. 

The defeat means the Blues end the season in 11th place with 50 points, 2 positions and 2 points better off than last term.

Sidley Team: Willis, Brand, Cooper (Aston), Cruikshank, Mote, Patten, Masters, McMinigal, Hole (Gould), S Morris, Taylor.

Rye United 0 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Monday 9th April 2012

A brilliant battling performance from Sidley United saw them come away with a 0 - 0 draw that surely ends Rye United's title challenge.

In the swirling wind it was Sidley who had the better of the first half although there were little goal attempts from either side. Steve Morris playing up front did well to hold the ball up as Lewis Hole and Allan McMinigal joined in when the Blues attacked.

Jono Richardson flashed a header over the bar before Sam Adams' cross just evaded Liam Upton at the far post as Rye began to create a couple of half chances. 

In the second half Rye came at Sidley with more urgency and Josh Willis made two impressive saves to keep the scores level. The first was a great reflex stop from a Matt McClean header destined for the bottom corner and the second a fingertip save onto the crossbar from another header from Kenny Pogue. 

Rye threw on numerous forwards in desperation to try and win the game and on Sidley corners left as many as 5 players upfield. But they failed to find a breakthrough and the Blues held on for a well earned point which was rightly celebrated long after the match.

Sidley Team: Willis, Brand, Rea, Cooper, Cruikshank, McMinigal, Masters, Patten, Barden (Taylor), Hole, S Morris.

Sidley United 2 - 1 Redhill - SCFL Division One - Saturday 7th April 2012

Sidley United signed off at Gullivers for the 2011/12 season with a fine 2 - 1 victory over Redhill.

The Blues gave a debut to Jack Cooper at centre back while Lewis Hole and Steve Morris lined up together up front - something Sidley haven't been able to do as much as they would have liked this season. 

It was a dream start as they took the lead inside the first 30 seconds with Callum McDonld's strike taking a wicked deflection off a Redhill defender and beating the goalkeeper.

Blues doubled the lead through an Allan McMinigal strike into the far corner at the end of another good move as they led by 2 at the break.

Redhill came out and played the better football in the second half and got one back on 75 minutes as a shot from the edge of the area by Marcus Elliott beat Blues stopper Josh Willis who was on the ground following an accidental collision. 

But despite a nervy last 15 minutes the Blues saw the game through to take the points.Sidley amassed 26 league points at home this season and this win was enough to move beyond last year's points tally.

Sidley Team: Willis, Brand, Cruikshank (Mote), Cooper, Rea, Taylor (Barden), C McDonald, Patton (Masters), McMinigal, Morris, Hole. 

Sidley United vs Chichester City - Saturday 31st March 2012

Troubled Chichester City failed to field a side for the game against Sidley United today, the second time this week they have failed to fulfill a fixture.

As a result, Sidley United gain the three points and a day off.

Sidley United 3 - 4 Bexhill United - Hastings Senior Cup Final - Tuesday 27th March 2012

Sidley United blew their last remaining opportunity to lift some silverware this season after throwing away a lead in the dying seconds against 10 man Bexhill United.

A poor performance from the Blues saw them go 1 down early on with Paul Rogers fine finish putting the Division Two side in front. Sidley got a bit of luck when Gavin Bourne miskicked and then had to bring down a Sidley forward which earned him a red card and the Blues a penalty which Ben White converted.

Sidley went in front just after half time as Chris Gould lifted the ball over stand in goalkeeper Joe Rogers. But despite this advantage Sidley still failed to play with any quality and were pegged back as Martin Denny got a lucky break to steer past Willis.

Sidley went back in front in bizarre circumstances on 89 minutes as a tame backpass took a bounce in Paul Robinson style and Rogers had to watch the ball creep over the line. But incredibly Sidley were unable to defend and Bexhill strike twice as the game ticked over towards the final whistle. First Andy Garman brilliantly fired in a volley before Rogers stole the winner with a deflected shot.

An immensely disappointing night for the Blues who really never got going and in the end deserved to lose. A big response needed to this performance.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, B White, Cruikshank, Brand, C McDonald (Masters) Patten, Taylor, McMinigal, Gould (S Morris), Barden (Hole).

Sidley United 2 - 0 Arundel - SCFL Division One - Saturday 24th March 2012

Sidley United returned to winning ways with a 2 - 0 victory over Arundel with Chris Gould's brace proving the difference.

Arundel's main goal threat Scott Tipper was forced off in the first half after picked up a knock and that seemed to nullify any Arundel threat to the Sidley goal. Saying that Sidley created little in the first half on a baking hot afternoon.

But after the break it took just 4 minutes for Gould to fire in his first Sidley goal. After Jason Taylor's shot was parried the ball came back to Gould to sweep home from 12 yards.

And he soon doubled his tally with a spectacular strike. The ball coming over his shoulder was met on the volley and the strike looped over James Fernandes in the Arundel goal and into the back of the net.

Allan McMinigal missed a glorious chance to make the game safe but he poked wide when clean through although it mattered little as Sidley held on with man of the match Brett Patten particularly impressive.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Brand, B White, Cruikshank, C McDonald, Patten, Taylor (Hole), McMinigal, Gould, Barden (S White).

Sidley United 1 - 3 Lingfield - SCFL Division One - Saturday 17th March 2012

Sidley United were unlucky to come out of a close game with nothing as Lingfield went away 3 - 1 winners.

Blues went in front on 10 minutes when the returning Kevin Barden's looping header went over the goalkeeper and into the corner of the net. Lingfield levelled midway through the first half through a soft penalty, converted by Josh Smith.

In an even first half both sides created opportunities and Blues were playing well. But just after half time they fell behind as Smith fired past Willis at the near post and high into the net.

Sidley pushed forward after that and had a sustained period of pressure. Lewis Hole had a glorious chance to equalise but slammed wide when through one on one with the goalkeeper.

And as Sidley piled forward in the dying embers of the game, Lingfield broke away and in the 94th minute a forward lifted the ball over Willis expertly to seal the win.

Unlucky on the Blues who played well and certainly didn't deserve the scoreline.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Brand, J White, Cruikshank, Masters (C McDonald), Patten, McMinigal, Gould (S White), Barden, Hole.

*Lingfield were later deducted the three points after it transpired that they played a different player, who was suspended, under the name of Josh Smith*

Sidley United 0 - 2 Three Bridges - SCFL Division One - Saturday 3rd March 2012

Three Bridges continued their march towards the top of the County League this afternoon with a 2 - 0 victory at Gullivers over the Blues.

Sidley finally managed to acquire a goalkeeper for the game with Sam Harris-Green stepping in between the sticks while Joe White debuted at centre back having dual signed from Burgess Hill Town. 

Blues were on the wrong end of a refereeing decision which led to the first goal. A ball clearly came off a Bridges player but they were awarded a throw in and from that they won a free kick from which the ball in was knocked home at the back post at the second attempt by Abu Touray. 

Sidley played fairly well with Brett Patten particularly useful and it was somewhat unjust when Bridges doubled their lead on 35 minutes with a lovely direct free kick right into the top corner by Lee Carney. 

After the break both sides battled well but chances were at a premium. Bridges' Elliott Romian came the closest, hitting the post when well placed. Romain was somewhat lucky to remain on the field after a two footed lunge went unpunished by the referee who had a somewhat erratic game.

Sidley Team: Harris-Green, Rea, Mote, White (Chandler), Cruikshank, Masters, Patten, Taylor (Lusted), McMinigal, S McDonald, Gould.

Hassocks 1 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 23rd February 2012

Sidley United were unlucky to come away from Hassocks empty handed as a big refereeing decision went against them in a 1 - 0 defeat.

In very wet and windy conditions Sidley played with the wind in the first half and had more possession of the ball but failed to create many clear cut opportunities. In fact the closest came from Hassocks who hit the post with a low shot on a rare foray forward.

In the second half it was Hassocks who had the wind's advantage but they also failed to make the best of it. Lewis Hole missed a good opportunity when he was 1 on 1 with the goalkeeper and Sidley suffered soon after. 

A Hassocks midfielder jumped over the top of a static Bryce Masters and fell to the floor and the refeee awarded the home side the free kick. And directly from that the ball in took a nick off a Hassocks head and found the back of the net.

Sidley tried to rally but were always up against it after that and unfortunately they couldn't find the equaliser despite a vastly improved performance.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Mote, Cruikshank, S Morris, Lusted (Taylor), McMinigal (Ham), Masters, Patten, S McDonald, Hole.

Sidley United 4 - 0 Selsey - SCFL Division One - Saturday 28th January 2012

Sidley United returned to winning ways with a great team performance as they beat Selsey 4 - 0.

Blues started brightly and with Rob Wimble off the field receiving treatment for an injury, Sidley took the chance to go clear. Firstly Brett Patten slotted home after good work by Jared Lusted on 10 minutes and just a minute later Lusted himself grabbed a goal after being put clear by a great through pass.

Blues made it 3 on 40 minutes when Lusted's cross from the right found Lewis Hole who powered home the header. Selsey had created 3 or 4 good opportunities themselves in the first half but found Josh Willis in outstanding form.

In the second half, there were chances at either end but there was nothing much between the sides. Then on 75 minutes Sidley assistant manager Wayne Farrier went down having injured his groin and with Sidley having made all 3 substitutions, we had to play out the remainder of the game with 10 men. 

Blues defended resoutely with Chris Rea and Steve Morris particularly impressive in defence. And the break away goal that always looked likely came on 89 minutes as Allan McMinigal's mishit landed at the feet of Jason Taylor who slotted home.

There was still time for a miss of the season contender as Lewis Hole raced through 1 on 1 only to put the ball wide but it mattered not in the end as Blues kept the clean sheet and took 3 very welcome points.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Mote, Farrier, Cruikshank, Masters, Patten (Brand), Lusted (Taylor), Gould (McMinigal), S McDonald, Hole.

Sidley United 0 - 3 Lancing - SCFL Division One - Saturday 21st January 2012

Lancing completed the double over Sidley United this season as they convincingly won by a 3 - 0 scoreline.

Lancing started brightly and had the better of the opening exchange. Sidley grew into the game and had a good 5 minute spell but then Lancing took the lead. A fierce strike from the edge of the area was beaten out by Willis and from a tight angle Dan Turner fired into the net. 

Lancing doubled their advantage shortly before half time as a through ball found Charlie Walker who skillfully turned and shot in one movement and his effort went in off the inside of the post.

In the second half, Walker sealed the game on 50 minutes as he fired past Willis high at the near post. Lancing somewhat took their foot off the pedal but Sidley only had some small half chances and never really looked like threatening a comeback.

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler (S Morris), Mote, Cruikshank, Brand (Patten), Masters (Short), McMinigal, Lusted, Gould, Hole, Ham.

Horsham YMCA 1 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 14th January 2012 

Sidley United held on to take a 1 - 1 draw from Horsham YMCA despite having Chris Gould sent off.

Blues were on the back foot in the first 20 minutes but grew into the game and started having good spells of pressure as the half went on. Then, on 42 minutes, Jared Lusted was felled in the area and Casey Ham stepped up to smash home the penalty.

After half time, the game was fairly even with chances for both teams. The game swung though in the 75th minute as Gould picked up two yellow cards within about a minute, the first of which seeming particularly harsh. Before Gould even got to the changing room, Horsham YMCA were level as the resulting free kick fell to a forward who smashed the ball at Josh Willis. Willis parried the ball but only up in the air and the striker hooked home from practically on the goal-line. 

Horsham YMCA smelt blood and piled forward and 3 minutes later hit the underside of the bar with a header before it was scrambled clear. Sidley had a few half-chances on the break but in the end were holding out for the whistle, which came to see a 1 - 1 draw. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Mote, Farrier, Cruikshank, Masters, McMinigal (Brand), Taylor, Lusted (Short), Gould, Hole, Ham. 

Sidley United 0 - 1 Peacehaven & Telscombe - SCFL Division One - Saturday 7th January 2012 

Sidley United missed a good opportunity to score some points as they lost 1 - 0 to Peacehaven & Telscombe in a match that finished 10 a side.

Blues gave a debut to Chris Gould, signed this week from AFC Uckfield but they started slowly and were under pressure for most of the opening 20 minutes. But they grew into the game and could have gone in at the break in front as Casey Ham fired wide right on the whistle. 

A key moment came with 15 minutes to go. A long kick upfield from the home goalkeeper saw Josh Willis and a Peacehaven forward slide for the ball. Willis got their first and the forward was adjuged to have left his studs in and was promptly shown a second yellow card. Willis contiuned but was visibly struggling. 

With a man advantage though Sidley failed to make the best of the opportunity. Bryce Masters lost the ball in the midfield and Peacehaven broke down the right, the ball cut back and the shot going underneath Willis, who couldn't get down quickly enough. Bird and McMinigal came on but it was all too late as Peacehaven were content to play the ball in the corner.

To compound Sidley's misery, Dan Cruikshank was then harshly sent off when he picked up a second yellow for handball when a Peacehaven forward smashed the ball at him from close range. 

A disappointing result which doesn't really give Sidley what they deserve from the game. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler, Mote, Farrier (Bird), Cruikshank, Masters, C McDonald, Lusted (McMinigal), Taylor, Gould, Ham (Hole).

Sidley United 1 - 0 Ringmer - SCFL Division One - Monday 2nd January 2012

A solitary strike from Casey Ham was enough to give Sidley United their first win of 2012 with a 1 - 0 win over Ringmer. 

The first half ended a goalless affair with Sidley on top but both Lewis Hole and Terry Payne missing good oportunities to score. On a very muddy pitch both sides battled but their wasn't a high level of quality on offer.

In the second half Sidley picked up the pace and found the net in the 62nd minute. A Ringmer defender gave the ball away, the growingly impressive Bryce Masters laid the ball off to Ham whose low strike found the corner. 

Hole missed a glorious chance to seal the game with around 10 minutes to go and inevitably Ringmer pushed forward seeking the equaliser as Sidley dropped deeper. But the Blues hung on for their first win since late November.

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler (Lusted), Short (Taylor), Munday, Cruikshank, Mote, Masters, C McDonald, Payne, Hole, Ham (Bird).

Redhill 5 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 31st December 2011

Sidley United were left completely shattered after being easily brushed aside 5 - 1 at Redhill.

The Blues gave a first league start of the season to assistant manager Wayne Farrier but it had little positive effect as Sidley conceded just 30 seconds in - Gordon nodding in a header from a free kick. Andy Atkin doubled the lead 2 minutes later to leave Sidley shell-shocked. 

Redhill cut through time and time again and missed numerous chances before Atkin did finally nod home the third. Sidley scored out of the blue as Lewis Hole lifted an effort over the on-rushing Chris May and into the net but it was scant consolation.

Things didn't improve much in the second half as Marc Munday was fortunate to avoid an early bath after two tangles with opposition players. Two further goals consigned Sidley to another defeat. 

On to Monday's game at home to Ringmer where Sidley will have to pick themselves up and play an awful lot better if we are to register a win.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea (Bird), Masters, Farrier, Cruikshank, Munday, Short, Taylor, McMinigal, Hole (Lusted), S Morris (Ham).

Sidley United 0 - 2 Rye United - SCFL Division One - Monday 26th December 2011

Sidley United put in a battling display at Gullivers today but Rye United were the victors by a 2 - 0 scoreline.

Rye took the lead after just 3 minutes as Phil Rhodes knocked in a corner. You feared the worst but Sidley dug in and created some half chances of their own. The first half was very even and Sidley played well.

In the second half, some full blooded challenges led to some touchline altercations and the game was very scrappy. In the 67th minute Dan Cruikshank felled a Rye forward and Duncan McArthur stepped up to convert the penalty. Despite knowing the game was probably up, Sidley battled hard and competed well and caused Rye a few problems but were unable to put the ball in the net.

A much better performance and the boys should take credit for the way they played against table-topping opposition. Next up Redhill away on New Year's Eve.

Sidley Team: Willis, Miltiadou (Mote), Rea, S Morris, Cruikshank, Masters, Bird (Taylor), Short, Payne (Lusted), Barden, Ham.

Sidley United 1 - 3 East Grinstead Town - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 20th December 2011

A better performance from the Blues ultimately still failed to yield any points as East Grinstead Town came from behind to win this game in the second half.

After a slow opening quarter Sidley started to get on top of the first half with some nice passing moves and took the lead in the 28th minute when Steve Morris headed in Jason Taylor's corner. East Grinstead responded by upping their game which made for a very even first half, with Sidley just about worth their half-time lead.

East Grinstead got back on terms early in the second half when a shot by Ben Chick took a wicked deflection off a defender to wrong foot the Sidley keeper in the 54th minute. The goal seemed to revive the away team's confidence and unsettle Sidley, who started to look a bit ragged at the back.

Another goal in the 67th minute from Tony Reed made Sidley's hopes of a win even more remote, although they kept going. A decent shout for a Sidley penalty for a foul on Terry Payne was denied. Grinstead made sure of the 3 points when Ben Chick got his second of the match on 74 minutes. The goal was almost chalked off after the assistant referee seemed to have flagged for offside, only to explain that he thought the ball had gone in the side netting and was signalling for a goal-kick. After a brief discussion however the referee gave the goal, which was in fact the right decision.

An improved showing from Sidley however after the defeat at Worthing United so signs for optimism for the games ahead.

Sidley Team: Willis, Masters, Day, S.Morris, Cruikshank, Munday, Taylor, Payne, Hole (Ham), S.McDonald (Lusted), McMinigal (Bird)

Worthing United 2 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 17th December 2011

Sidley United produced another 'Good Sidley, bad Sidley' performance within the space of 90 minutes as they conceded a last minute winner to lose 2 - 1 at Worthing United. 

Sidley went in front just 8 minutes in as Alan McMinigal returned to a Sidley shirt by scoring as he cut in from the right to slot home. And despite playing the better football for the first 20 minutes Sidley went back to hitting the ball long and frantic defending as Worthing got more into the game. They equalised on the half hour mark as a Worthing United forward rounded Willis and slotted home. 

The second half saw wave after wave of Worthing attack as Sidley struggled to get out of their own half. Worthing smashed the crossbar from a free kick, saw Willis make two excellent stops and missed other good chances and it seemed a case of when not if they scored. The breakthrough came 2 minutes into stoppage time as a Worthing United player was allowed to turn in the box and slot past Willis. 

Another highly disappointing day for the Blues who should really have done better, especially given the first 20 minutes. Yet more frailties exposed that need to be addressed and quickly if we are to get anything from the better teams yet to face. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler (Ham). C Morris, Cruikshank (S McDonald), Munday, Masters, Day, Lusted (White), McMinigal, Taylor, Hole 

Hassocks 5 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 10th December 2011 

Sidley United were consigned to a crushing defeat by high-flying Hassocks by a 5 - 0 scoreline.

The Blues were on top in the opening 20 minutes and had Hassocks rattled early on but all that changed as a quickfire brace from Phil Gault had Hassocks two goals up.

Sidley barely had time to gather breath before finding themselves 3 down as Nathan Miles expertly curled home past Josh Willis. The fourth goal came right on the stroke of half time as Willis came to claim a free kick and missed the ball as it bounced straight in.

Ian Westlake made it 5 - 0 on 50 minutes with a deft finish past Willis and although Sidley twice later hit the woodwork Hassocks had taken their foot off the pedal long before the end. 

Another disappointing result after a much improved performance from last week but again the Blues come away empty handed.

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler, Mote, S Morris, Cruikshank (C McDonald), Munday, Masters, Lusted (White), Taylor, S McDonald, Hole (Ham)

Sidley United 1 - 1 St Francis Rangers - SCFL Division One - Saturday 3rd December 2011

Sidley United dropped two points as they were held to a 1 - 1 draw by St Francis Rangers.

Blues took the lead after just 9 minutes; a nice move finished off by Lewis Hole from close range. But despite being comfortable in the first half, Sidley failed to build on the lead.

And in the second half, St Francis came out the better side. Blues were made to pay for failing to find a second goal on 55 minutes when Romaine's shot flashed past Callum Christie in the Sidley goal. 

Sidley's flat performance second half saw them pump long balls forward but could easily have lost the game as a good Christie save kept the scores level. Ultimately another disappointing day at the office for the Blues, who will feel that this was points dropped today.

Sidley Team: Christie, Rea (Bird), Mote, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday, Day, Funnell (Masters), S McDonald, Hole, Ham (Taylor). 

East Grinstead Town 2 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 26th November 2011

Sidley United went down 2 - 0 at East Grinstead Town after conceding after just 17 seconds.

The home side went in front right from the off, a ball played in from the left was teed up and smashed in by the forward. The second came on 20 minutes, another left wing cross headed home. 

Josh Willis almost single handedly kept Sidley in the game, with 2 magnificent saves being just the pick of the bunch of his efforts to keep Grinstead out. The home side also hit the post and missed an open goal in the first half.

In the second half Sidley were better but failed to create many opportunities; Scott McDonald's near post effort being the best they managed all game. Grinstead had further opportunities but found Willis in terrific form to deny them any further goals.

The damage was done early today and seemed to kill us before we got going. A disappointing end to our good form of late and hopefully we can pick up and respond next week against St Francis Rangers. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea (Chandler), Mote, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday (C Morris, Day, Bird (White), Taylor, S McDonald, Ham.

Sidley United 3 - 1 AFC Uckfield - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 22nd November 2011 

Sidley United beat AFC Uckfield for the third time this season as they won this league encounter 3 - 1. 

After previous successes against mid-table Uckfield, Sidley started confidently and took the lead through Scott McDonald. Josh Willis made a good safe right on half time to preserve Sidley's lead.

Lewis Hole doubled the lead after being fed in by Casey Ham and although AFC Uckfield pulled one back a few minutes later from Jack Divall, Hole made sure of the win with another goal in the 87th minute. 

Another valuable 3 points for Sidley that lifts them up to fifth in the table, their highest league position since the very beginning of the season. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Mote, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday, Funnell, Taylor (White), S McDonald, Ham (Bird), Hole.

Sidley United 0 - 0 Southwick (Southwick win on penalties) - John O Hara Cup Third Round - Saturday 19th November 2011 

Sidley United missed out on the Quarter Finals of the John O Hara cup after losing a penalty shoot out to Southwick following a goalless tie.

Blues edged the first half with a couple of good chances going begging - the best being Lewis Hole's drive just past the far post. Injuries dominated the game with Bryce Masters breaking his nose in the first half and his substitute Callum McDonald cutting his eye. A Southwick midfielder also ended the game in large bandages after cutting his head.

Second half and the extra time periods saw both sides battle but fail to create a killer opening and so it went to penalties and after Rea put Blues in front, Mark Chandler and Marc Munday both missed the target and Scott McDonald's penalty was saved to put Southwick into the next round.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Mote, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday, Masters (C McDonald, Chandler), White (Taylor), Bird, S McDonald, Hole. 

Sidley United 5 - 2 Crowborough Athletic - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 15th November 2011 

Sidley United produced possibly the best 45 minutes football of the season as they ended up beating Crowborough Athletic 5 - 2.

Blues led 4 - 0 at the interval with first half goals courtesy of a Scott McDonald finish, a Casey Ham finish after a magnificent cross from Lewis Hole, an own goal after more good work by Ham and Hole's near post finish. The excellent performance was only marred by an injury to Paddy Cody at the end of the half. 

Second half saw Sidley fail to hit any gear and Crowborough got a consolation on 68 minutes when George Callaghan netted. Sam White made it 5 on 74 minutes by slotting home from an acute angle and the scoring was completed by Kevin Everest who nodded in a Crowborough corner. 

A fantastic 45 minutes killed this game off for Sidley, who will be disappointed not to have gone on to control the second half in quite the same manner. But still a great home win and another important 3 points. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody (Mote), Rea, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday (White), Masters, C McDonald, S McDonald, Hole, Ham (Bird).

Selsey 1 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 12th November 2011

Sidley United came away from the long trip to Selsey with a credible 1 - 1 draw after going down to 10 men in the second half.

The Blues started the better and Scott McDonald was unlucky to see his free kick come back off the crossbar. Despite this, clear cut chances in the first half were at a minimum.

In the second half, Selsey started stronger and deservedly took the lead. On the hour mark, Josh Willis was sent off after he was deemed to be the last man bringing down a Selsey forward. Paddy Cody took over between the sticks.

Despite being a man down, Sidley continued to press and on 80 minutes Lewis Hole was fouled in the area and Sidley had a penalty. Casey Ham converted. The Blues had a couple of chances to grab the winner but in the end will come away content with a point.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, Rea (Mote), S Morris, Cruikshank, Brand (White), Masters, Munday, McDonald, Hole, Ham.

Sidley United 4 - 0 Shoreham - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 8th November 2011

Sidley United got the Chichester defeat out of their system by winning 4 - 0 at home to third bottom Shoreham tonight.

The Blues started slowly and Shoreham had the better of the opening exchanges but it was Sidley who went ahead on 28 minutes when new boy Bryce Masters swept home from just inside the penalty area. Sidley gained a massive advantage 5 minutes later as Scott McDonald was brought down in the area and the Shoreham defender saw red. The goalkeeper got a hand to Chris Rea's penalty but couldn't keep it out.

Sidley's third came on 39 minutes and was another bizarre moment. A cross from the right was knocked by the Shoreham defender back to the goalkeeper, who picked the ball up. An indirect free kick 6 yards out was knocked to Adam Day who drilled it low at the near post and found the back of the net.

Just 23 seconds into the second half Sidley's fourth arrived. Casey Ham charged down the left and cut inside to fire his shot in off the underside of the crossbar. Sidley took their foot off the pedal thereafter and had a Steve Morris goal-line clearance and some good Josh Willis saves to thank for preserving the clean sheet.

A much better all round display today and nice to notch a home win in the league for the first time this season with a clean sheet.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, Rea, S Morris, Cruikshank, Brand (Thompson), Masters, Day (C McDonald), Bird (White), S McDonald, Ham.

Chichester City 2 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 5th November 2011 

It was 'Bad Sidley' who turned up at Chichester on Saturday as they went down 2 - 0 to previously bottom of the table opposition.

A poor Chichester side went in front on 8 minutes when a speculative shot from outside the area seemed to bounce straight over Josh Willis. Despite Chichester failing to create many more opportunities, Sidley never got their game going and never tested the home goalkeeper.

Willis fingertipped a point blank header onto the crossbar but the second goal came from the spot after a rash challenge in the penalty area and the Chichester goalkeeper, for the second time this season, lashed the spot kick past Willis.

Too many times today the Blues made poor decisions and failed to read the game well enough to gather any momentum and threaten to penetrate the Chichester backline.

An extremely disappointing performance from the Blues today and in complete contrast to the 'Good Sidley' that played at Arundel last week. Consistency is required if we are to be more of a force in this division and we will certainly expect to see a response on Tuesday night at home to Shoreham.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody (S Morris), Mote, Rea, Cruikshank, Brand, Masters, White (C Morris), Bird, Ham, S McDonald

Arundel 1 - 4 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 29th October 2011

Casey Ham scored his first Sidley United goals as Sidley United secured an impressive 4 - 1 win away at Arundel.

Blues lead at half time through Dan Cruikshank's header on a corner but it was Ham's quickfire brace on 46 and 48 minutes that really sealed the game.

Kevin Bird ran through to add a fourth on 73 minutes as Blues took complete control in the second half. Arundel did grab a consolation on 82 minutes through Josh Biggs' poked finish but Blues were well worthy of the win.

A very solid performance from the Blues, who defended well by and large and took their chances when they came.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, Mote, Rea, Cruikshank, Brand, Payne, White (Bird), Taylor (C McDonald), S McDonald, Ham.

Sidley United 2 - 2 Westfield (AET - Sidley United win 4 - 2 on penalties) - Hastings Senior Cup - Wednesday 26th October 2011

Josh Willis made two excellent saves to win Sidley United a penalty shoot out against Westfield in the Hastings Senior Cup.

The match had ended 1 - 1 at the end of 90 minutes with a Chris Rea penalty putting Blues in front in the first half but with Sam Willett equalising on 64 minutes for Westfield.

In extra time, Scott McDonald restored Blues' lead on 94 minutes, slotting home from a tight angle after Adam Day's shot was spilled. But Sidley gifted Westfield an equaliser when a poor challenge in the box resulted in a penalty; Willett tucking it away.

And so it went to penalties and whilst all four Sidley spot kicks were converted, Willis' 2 saves made sure of a third consecutive appearance in the final against near neighbours Bexhill United.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, Mote, Rea, C Morris (Cruikshank) Brand, C McDonald (Day), White, Bird (Taylor), S McDonald, Ham.

AFC Uckfield 1 - 2 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 22nd October 2011

Sidley United claimed all three points with an injury time goal as they beat AFC Uckfield 2 -1.

After a shaky start, Jason Taylor fired Sidley ahead on 18 minutes from just inside the penalty area. AFC Uckfield seemed intent on playing long balls over the top but Sidley defended quite resolutely.

In the second half, Uckfield equalised when a ball across goal was turned in at the far post on 68 minutes. The home side had some good possession but failed to create many clear cut opportunities.

And just as it seemed the game was heading for a draw, Jason Taylor popped up unmarked to head the ball home and secure all 3 points for the travelling side.

A better performance today and another good away win, which should help improve the confidence in the team.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Mote, S Morris (Cody), Cruikshank, Day, C McDonald (Brand), Bird, Taylor, Barden (S McDonald), Hole.

Lingfield 4 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 18th October 2011

Sidley United were left to rue defensive mistakes once again as they went down 4 - 1 at Lingfield.

The Blues actually took the lead on 14 minutes when a long kick upfield saw a Lingfield defender head over his own goalkeeper and into his own net. But that was where the positives ended for the Blues as poor defending on 24, 31 and 44 minutes saw Lingfield go in 3 - 1 up at the break.

Jason Taylor spurned a great chance to reduce the deficit in the second half but his connection wasn't enough to turn the ball in and Lingfield got the fourth on 84 minutes - more scrappy defending as a ball wasn't cleared properly and the ball cannoned in off the post.

Much to work on defensively for the Blues, who will struggle in matches as long as we keep defending this way.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, C Morris (Mote), Rea, Cruikshank, Munday, Brand (White), C McDonald (Day), Taylor, Bird, Payne.

Sidley United 0 - 0 Worthing United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 15th October 2011 

Sidley United picked up their first home point of the season but will be disappointed they failed to take all 3 as they drew 0 - 0 with Worthing United.

Blues started well and edged the first half, with Lewis Hole having the best of the opportunities. Worthing had created little. But after half time Sidley started slowly and Worthing probably edged the first 20 minutes of the second half.

Worthing would have gone in front if it wasn't for Dan Cruikshank's goal-line clearance after a Worthing forward had rounded Josh Willis. However Sidley had golden opportunities: Hole missing a header from a few yards, McDonald skewing a cutback from Bird wide and both Bird and Barden firing wide from inside the area. 

Worthing were awarded a rather soft penalty on 83 minutes but Josh Willis saved well with his legs to preserve parity. Unbelievably it was the third consecutive game between the sides that finished goalless with Worthing missing a penalty.

Shooting practice required for the Blues perhaps to turn possession and chances into goals.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, C Morris, Rea, Cruikshank, C McDonald, Brand, White (Bird), Taylor, Hole, S Morris (Barden)

Sidley United 2 - 0 Mike Oak - John O Hara Cup Second Round - Tuesday 11th October 2011

Sidley United progressed to the next round of the John O Hara cup tonight with a 2 - 0 win over Division Two side Mile Oak.

After a slightly nervy 10 minutes which included Oak's Karl Gillingham having a goal ruled out for an infringement, Sidley began to get on top and control the game. They took the lead on 18 minutes when some nice football saw Steve Morris slide the ball low into the corner. Sidley doubled the lead on 41 minutes when the impressive Lewis Hole slid home following more good work from Jason Taylor.

Blues had chances in the second half to extend the lead; Kevin Barden hitting the post and Hole and Kevin Bird missing opportunities as well but in the end two was enough for the Blues as they set up a home tie against Southwick in the last 16. 

A home win and a clean sheet, but sterner tests await. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody, Tuppeney, Rea, Cruikshank, Brand, C McDonald, Taylor, White (Bird), Hole, S Morris (Barden). 

Sidley United 0 - 2 Horsham YMCA - SCFL Division One - Saturday 8th October 2011 

Sidley United put in a much better display despite losing 2 - 0 at home to Horsham YMCA in a game that was not reflected by the scoreline.

Blues started brightly but fell behind on 7 minutes when Chris Rea fell over his own feet allowing Horsham in on goal down the right with George Hillier scoring the cutback. 5 minutes later Marc Munday took leave of his senses and stupidly punched an opponent off the ball. Rightfully he was shown the red card.

Despite this, Sidley were the better side and were unlucky to have 2 goals chalked off. The first was for offside against Jason Taylor after the impressive Lewis Hole's shot was parried and the second was against Hole for a high foot, despite him clearly getting the ball before the goalkeeper arrived for it.

Horsham got the second goal 5 minutes from time to clinch the game, a scramble in the box was turned home. But overall for Sidley a much better performance and positivies to take away from the game. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody (Brand), Rea, S Morris, Cruikshank, Munday, Payne, White (Bird), Taylor (C Morris), McDonald, Hole

Southwick 2 - 0 Sidley United - SCFA RUR Cup Second Round - Tuesday 4th October 2011 

Sidley United were outplayed by Second Division side Southwick as they exited the RUR Cup 2 - 0.

Blues were second best all over the pitch from the word go and Southwick took the lead with a header from Ryan Pretlove in the 19th minute. Just two minutes later they doubled the lead after no Sidley defender got a challenge in and Pretlove made no mistake. 

Sidley's misery was compounded in the second half when Lewis Hole was shown a straight red card for an apparent elbow on an opponent.

All round the pitch tonight the Blues lacked the skill and guile to compete, with the Blues reduced to hitting long balls forward in the vain hope of success.

A performance that raises many areas of concern that need to be addressed and quickly if Sidley are to address this slump they find themselves in. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Chandler, Cody, Rea, C Morris, Brand, McDonald, Barden (McDonald), Taylor, Hole, S Morris (White)

Shoreham 3 - 4 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 1st October 2011

Sidley United won 4 - 3 against struggling Shoreham in a bizarre match.

Blues should have been out of it in the first half as Shoreham twice hit the bar and also missed a penalty - Josh Willis turning it over for a corner. Shoreham felt doubly aggrieved as they had put the ball in the back of the net but the referee pulled them back for the penalty.

After half time, Sidley went in front against the run of play through a penalty of their own for handball. Lewis Hole converted. But Shoreham came again and were level 3 minutes later, Dan Cruikshank failing to clear and Shoreham slotted home. 5 minutes later they went in front after some slack marking by Sidley.

Out of the blue, Jason Taylor equalised for Sidley with his shot going in off the post on 71 minutes and four minutes later, Steve Morris pulled the ball back for Taylor to fire high into the roof of the net and restore Sidley's lead. It didn't last long. Shoreham picked their way through to level again on 79 minutes.

The linesman's flag saved Sidley from falling behind when Shoreham were through on goal but in the 6th minute of injury time, Carl Morris nodded home from a corner to win the game. There was still time for drama in the Sidley box, but the Blues scrambled clear to seal the win. 

A quite bizarre game with a 4 - 3 scoreline never on the cards at half time. Positives to take from the game for Sidley, including the points, but still plenty left to work on.

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Tuppeney (S Morris), C Morris, Cruikshank, Munday (Agutter), Brand, Barden (White), Taylor, McDonald, Hole.

Sidley United 2 - 3 East Grinstead Town - Sussex Senior Cup - Tuesday 27th September 2011

Sidley United put in a much better performance tonight against fourth in the table East Grinstead Town, but still lost this Sussex Senior Cup tie 3 - 2 at Gullivers.

Blues goalkeeper Josh Willis pulled off a fine save on 15 minutes to keep out a low shot before Steve Morris went close twice at the other end with headers. 

Grinstead took the lead on 31 minutes, Michael Death stealing in at the near post to head past Josh Willis and after the break they doubled their lead when Conor Hilder danced around Carl Morris and lashed a great strike into the top corner.

Blues responded and pulled one back through Jason Taylor's neat finish on 65 minutes and were on top for a short spell - Lewis Hole hitting the post just seconds after coming on.

But East Grinstead restored their two goal lead from the spot after Josh Willis was adjuged to have pulled down a striker and Death stepped up to score. Still Sidley came and on 84 minutes Morris headed in a corner to give Blues hope. Sidley could have nicked an equaliser right at the end but Morris' free header this time went wide instead of into the net.

A better performance from the Blues but they will still be looking for improvements at both ends of the pitch. 

Sidley Team: Willis, Rea, Tuppeney, C Morris, Munday, Agutter (Hole), Brand, Barden, Taylor, McDonald, S Morris

Sidley United 2 - 3 Chichester City - FA Vase - Saturday 24th September 2011

Sidley United are out of the FA Vase after an extremely disappointing performance in a 3 - 2 home defeat to Chichester City.

Blues should have been 3 up in the first 10 minutes but good chances were again missed and Chichester made Sidley pay as Phil Archibold lashed home from the edge of the area. Sidley rallied and equalised through a well taken Scott McDonald goal before going ahead right on the stroke of half time when Marc Munday headed home a Jason Taylor corner.

But Sidley didn't turn up in the second half. Chichester equalised through Harry Bass's header from a corner. Sidley should have wrapped up the game when a penalty was given to the home side for a handball in the area but Scott McDonald's poor spot kick was saved. 

And just as the game threatened to go into extra time, Dan Cruikshank hacked down a Chichester forward and goalkeeper Matt Short stepped up to slam the ball into the corner to put Sidley out.

A very disappointing performance with poor finishing and bad choices once again costing the Blues. We will face better teams than Chichester this year and we will have to seriously improve all aspects of our game if we are to avoid days like today in the future.

Sidley Team: Willis, Cody (C Morris), Tuppeney, Rea, Cruikshank, Munday, Agutter, Bird, Brand (Hole), Taylor, McDonald 

Sidley United 1 - 3 Peacehaven & Telscombe - SCFL Division One - Wednesday 21st September 2011

Sidley United slipped to a 3 - 1 home defeat to Peacehaven & Telscombe in a game littered with refereeing decisions which went against the home side. 

The Blues took the lead on 23 minutes when Scott McDonald headed home Paul Tuppeney's free kick. Just 4 minutes later the referee failed to give a foul for a high foot on Marc Munday and Peacehaven equalised seconds later.

At 1 - 1, the referee then showed Mark Chandler a second yellow card just as he was about to be substituted, apparently for saying something to him. With 10 men Peacehaven had more time and space and they went in front on 72 minutes and sealed the win 10 minutes later. 

It was a better performance from the Blues but big decisions went against them tonight. 

Sidley Team: Bourne, Cody, Chandler, Tuppeney, Cruikshank (Brand), Munday (C Morris), Agutter, Bird, Taylor, McDonald, S Morris (Barden)

Sidley United 0 - 3 Pagham - SCFL Division One - Saturday 14th September 2011

Sidley United suffered their first home league defeat of the season as Pagham won 3 - 0 at Gullivers to maintain their 100% start to the season.

Pagham took the lead after just 8 minutes when Ross Woolf's drive took a deflection and looped over Gavin Bourne. The first half was a fairly even affair but Sidley got on top second half and had several good chances to equalise, Lewis Hole's header from six yards being the pick of the chances.

And Pagham made the Blues pay when Bourne came to punch a cross and Woolf lifted the ball over him and in on 79 minutes and after Paddy Cody knocked over a Pagham forward, Dan Simmonds stepped up to slot home on 86 minutes.

A harsh scoreline for a Sidley performance which merited more but Blues must take their chances. 

Sidley Team: Bourne, Cody, Chandler (Farrier), Tuppeney, Cruikshank, Munday, Agutter, Brand (Bird), Taylor, McDonald, Hole (Barden). 

Lancing 2 - 0 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 13th September 2011

Sidley United slipped to their first league defeat of the campaign in a 2 - 0 defeat away at Lancing in a game the home side dominated.

The Blues came closest to scoring first when a Marc Munday header came back off the post. But after that Lancing quickly got on top and created numerous chances, with the inevitable goal coming on 43 minutes - a blockbuster strike from Sam O'Regan.

Sidley improved marginally after the break with some good substitutions but Lancing - who often overplayed the ball instead of shooting - created numerous chances to put the game to bed. In the end, the killer goal came three minutes from time, Jamie Groves finishing smartly into the corner. The Blues can have no complaints about the result and were perhaps fortunate to only concede two.

A bit of a reality check for Sidley tonight, and we will need to lift our game on Saturday to get anything from another tough looking game at home to Pagham.

Sidley Team: Bourne, Rea, Tuppeney, C Morris (Agutter), Cruikshank, Munday, Brand (S Morris), Taylor (Barden), Bird , McDonald, Hole.

Sidley United 4 - 2 AFC Uckfield AET - FA Vase - Saturday 10th September 2011 

Sidley United won a belting FA Vase cup tie 4 - 2 after extra time against AFC Uckfield.

In a match that had almost everything, Lewis Hole opened the scoring on 40 minutes, delightfully lifting the ball over the visiting goalkeeper. Barely a minute later goalkeeper Gavin Bourne made a superb save to deny a clean through Jack Divall to maintain Sidley's lead. 

AFC Uckfield equalised on 55 minutes when Chris Gould's free kick from 30 yards bounced awkwardly under Bourne and found the back of the net. Despite this Sidley got back on top and missed a number of good chances right at the death and so the game went into extra time.

It was Uckfield who struck first when a free kick from the left was flashed across goal and Drew Greenall poked it into the net. But Sidley responded well in the second period and supersub Scott McDonald equalised with a poked finish on 108 minutes and then put the Blues in front on 115 with a lovely drive into the corner from the edge of the area.

Sidley made sure of the win when Jason Taylor finished the game off 2 minutes from the end of extra time with a high shot into the corner.

The one sour note for Sidley was the second half injury to captain Dan Spice, who looks like he may be out for some considerable time. 

Sidley Team: Bourne, Rea, Tuppeney, Spice (Brand), Cruikshank, Munday, Agutter (McDonald), Taylor, Barden (Bird), Hole, S Morris.

St Francis Rangers 0 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 3rd September 2011

Sidley United maintained their 100% start to the league campaign with a narrow 1 - 0 win over St Francis Rangers.

The Blues had an ideal opportunity to go in front after just 90 seconds when the referee awarded a penalty for a push in the box but Paul Tuppeney's kick was saved by the home goalkeeper. Sidley kept coming though and after a mistake by ex-Sidley player Zac McEnery, Lewis Hole lobbed the goalkeeper only to see the ball come back off the post.

It felt like it might be one of those days but just 40 seconds into the second half, Lewis Hole turned in a cross from Jason Taylor to put the ball in the far corner of the net for his first goal since returning to the club. St Francis kept coming and put a few shots over the crossbar as they began to apply some pressure. 

Sidley didn't play as well in the final quarter and they dropped deep in the last 10 minutes to protect their lead but were ultimately successful to secure a fourth straight league win with four clean sheets. 

Sidley Team: Bourne, Rea, Tuppeney (Chandler), Cruikshank, Spice, Munday, Agutter, Taylor, Payne (McDonald), Hole (Brand), S Morris.

Ringmer 0 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Monday 29th August 2011

Sidley United maintained their 100% league record this season with a 1 - 0 win away at Ringmer today.

An even first half ended goalless, with Ringmer perhaps shading the chances. However Sidley claim closest to scoring during the opening period when Chris Agutter hit the inside of the post from a tight angle.

In the second half Sidley came out strong and were well on top. Kevin Bird had already missed two decent chances before he struck in the 65th minute, firing low past the goalkeeper from Jason Taylor's cutback. Sidley could have added one or two more with Bird at the forefront of things but they failed to find the goal that would have sealed the match. 

And once again as time was running out Sidley dropped deep as Ringmer pushed forward. The home team thought they had equalised deep into stoppage time only to see the linesman's flag rule it out for offside.

And with that, the full time whistle went to ensure another clean sheet and another 3 league points for the Blues.

Sidley Team: Bourne, Chandler, Rea, C Morris (Cruikshank), Spice, Brand, Munday, Agutter, Bird, Taylor, Payne (Hole). 

Dorking Wanderers 1 - 2 Sidley United (AET) - SCFA RUR Cup First Round - Saturday 27th August 2011

Sidley United found extra time a positive experience today as they came through this RUR cup encounter with Dorking Wanderers 2 - 1.

The Blues were lifeless for a lot of this game however and Dorking had chances to win the game in the 90 minutes. But Sidley persevered and took the lead on 82 minutes when Jason Taylor fired into the top corner from the edge of the box. 

But that was not the end of the drama as on 88 minutes Steve Morris was robbed and Dorking broke down the right with Daniel Evans converting the cross with a terrific strike from an acute angle. And so it was extra time again for Sidley for the second time this week.

But this time, the Blues came through. Right at the end of the first period of extra time, Morris fired an overhead kick into the bottom corner to put Sidley in front. As Dorking pushed forward, the Blues had further chances on the break but in the end they were happy to take the 2 - 1 victory and go through to the next round to face Southwick.

Sidley Team: Bourne, Cody, Tuppeney (Chandler), C Morris, Spice, Brand, Agutter (Hole), Barden (Bird), Taylor, Payne, S Morris.

Arundel 5 - 1 Sidley United AET - FA Cup Replay - Tuesday 23rd August 2011

Sidley United suffered an extra time nightmare as Arundel knocked us out of the FA Cup winning this replay 5 - 1 after extra time.

The Blues started brilliantly when Paul Tuppeney's 2nd minute free kick found the back of the net. Sidley were comfortably on top first half but couldn't find that all important second goal.

They were made to pay for a string of misses 7 minutes into the second half when Arundel dangerman Scott Tipper was left all alone at the back post to head past Gavin Bourne. Sidley still created plenty of chances but couldn't find the winning goal and so the game went into extra time.

And that's where it all went horribly wrong for Sidley. 2 more goals from Tipper completed his hat-trick before Lewis Hamilton and Billy Rayner completed the scoreline. The scoreline completely flattered Arundel but no doubt questions will be asked about the way Sidley imploded in extra time.

Next up is Dorking Wanderers in the FA Vase on Saturday and no doubt the boys will be looking to produce a positive response to tonight's disappointment. 

Sidley Team: Bourne, Cody, Tuppeney, C Morris, Spice (Rea), Munday, Agutter, Barden (Payne), Taylor, McDonald (Brand), S Morris 

Arundel 2 - 2 Sidley United - FA Cup - Saturday 20th August 2011

Sidley United will have to do battle with Arundel all over again after this FA Cup tie finished 2 - 2.

The Blues took the lead through Marc Munday's header after just 10 minutes and looked fairly comfortable, despite having to field defeder Carl Morris in goal.

However the game turned on a very contentious penalty, given against Paul Tuppeney for handball after a Dan Cruikshank clearance hit him. Only the referee seemed to think it was a penalty but Arundel weren't complaining as they duly equalised from the spot.

That seemed to throw Sidley and just 2 minutes after that, Arundel went ahead when a cross from the left was turned home. Sidley thought they had drawn level just before half time but Scott McDonald's goal was chalked off for offside. 

After the break, an aggrieved Sidley got back on top and equalised when Scott McDonald finished from an acute angle after a Paddy Cody throw-in. Arundel were tiring and Sidley had some half chances to wrap up the win but failed to find the killer goal. 

And so with Gullivers out of action due to the cricket and other local grounds unavailable, we go back to Arundel on Tuesday night in the replay to decide the tie.

Sidley Team: C Morris, Cody (Chandler), Tuppeney, Cruikshank, Spice, Brand (Hole), Agutter, Munday, Taylor, Barden, McDonald. 

Crowborough Athletic 0 - 2 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Tuesday 16th August 2011

Sidley United hit a quickfire brace in their 2 - 0 win over Crowborough Athletic tonight at the Alderbrook Rec. 

The Blues took the lead on 3 minutes when Scott McDonald wasn't tracked from a free kick and he stroked the ball home. Sidley doubled that lead on 10 minutes when Steve Morris shrugged off a defender and fired a spectacular shot into the top corner. 

Crowborough rallied and Dan Spice was arguably fortunate to escape with a yellow card after a home player was heading towards the goal. The resultant free kick cannoned off the crossbar. 

In the second half, Sidley had a great chance to go 3 up but McDonald could only find the side netting. Crowborough again hit the bar with a speculative effort but otherwise created little in the way of chances and Sidley comfortably saw out the remainder of the game to secure their second win of the season and go, temporarily at least, top of the County League. 

Sidley Team: Christie, Cody, Tuppeney, Cruikshank, Spice, Brand (Munday), Agutter, McDonald, Taylor (Barden), Hole (Payne), S Morris.

Three Bridges 0 - 1 Sidley United - SCFL Division One - Saturday 13th August 2011

Sidley United kicked off the 2010/11 season with an excellent 1 - 0 win away at title favourites Three Bridges.

The Blues had chances to score in the first half with Steve Morris smashing against the crossbar after just three minutes. Three Bridges had some good possession as the first half went along but Dan Spice and Dan Cruikshank dealt well with everything that was thrown at them.

In the second half, Sidley could have scored after just 30 seconds when Scott McDonald got through but his shot went just wide. Bridges were given a soft penalty for handball against Lawrence Brand on 66 minutes but debutant goalkeeper Callum Christie made a magnificent save to turn it over for a corner.

And as Bridges pushed forward they left room at the back. On 85 minutes Lewis Hole chased down a backpass to the home goalkeeer and the ball ricocheted to Steve Morris who slotted home. Sidley defended resolutely thereafter with Spice immense at the back.

A magnificent performance from all the team today and a great beginning to the new season.

Sidley Team: Christie, Cody, Tuppeney (Chandler), Cruikshank, Spice, Agutter, McDonald (Barden), Brand, Taylor (Bird), Hole, Morris.




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