A Diallo double saw Worthing emerge victorious in this clash between the top two; becoming the first team to take maximum points off Bowers & Pitsea this season and take us to the Premier Division summit.
- Diallo (51', 85')
- Knott (19')
Match Report: Gareth Nicholas
Danny Barker for Shaq Gwengwe was the only change to the side beaten at Leatherhead on Tuesday night, in a game switched to The Camping World Community Stadium, Horsham.
It took fifteen minutes for the game to get going but then everything seemed to happen at once!
Ricky Aguiar started it all off with a pass out to Jasper Pattenden on the left. He battled against the wind until it brought him down just inside the penalty area. That’s George Wind, by the way (!) Ollie Pearce, who’d scored from the spot in midweek wasn’t able to repeat the trick as his effort smacked against the ‘keeper’s left-hand post and away to safety.
Less than sixty seconds later, there was a spot-kick at the other end as Cam Tutt pulled down James Thomas and earned himself a booking at the same time. Despite going the right way and getting a hand to top scorer, Billy Knott’s twelve-yarder, Roco Rees couldn’t quite prevent the ball from sneaking in.
A stray backwards pass by Pattenden, intended for Aguiar, almost led to the visitors extending their advantage shortly afterwards when Dan Trendall became the lucky recipient instead but Rees snuffed out the danger, twice. The second occasion denying Max Cornhill on the follow-up at the back stick.
Play continued with Cornhill temporarily prone on the ground just past the half-hour mark but Aguiar’s drive, outside the box, went the wrong side of the near upright and Bowers’ man was able to continue.
Marvin Armstrong found Myles-Meekums inside the eighteen-yard area; the winger seeing his effort blocked until, eventually, Dayshonne Golding turned and fired over the crossbar.
An early change had seen Mo Diallo come on for Leon Moore and he soon capitalised on a misplaced pass at the back by the Bowers & Pitsea defence to slip in Pearce. Unfortunately, though Ollie put his attempt past the far post.
A stoppage time corner caused a mild panic in the Bowers box with the final outcome resulting in Aguiar drilling wide from twenty yards.
So, Reds went into the break a goal down having failed to register a single shot on target and the away side were good value for their lead.
The second half, however, was a different story and the hosts were quickly on the attack. Pattenden picking out an unmarked Golding in the area who could only watch as his turn and shot was saved by goalie, Lamar Joseph-Johnson, with Myles-Meekums also being kept out as Worthing got another bite of the same cherry.
It required a goal line clearance by the returning Barker to stop Cornhill from doubling the Essex side’s lead moments later before normal service was resumed thanks to a perfect pass from Colbran on halfway that Pearce controlled on his chest, half-swivelled and powered goalwards where he was denied by Lamar-Johnson.
Seconds after those close calls, the home team had their equaliser. Joseph-Johnson took a heavy touch to a backpass that Myles-Meekums charged down and the ball fell kindly for sub, Diallo who had the relatively simple task of knocking into an empty net.
A neat one-two between Golding and Pattenden culminated in the former just missing the far top corner, followed soon after by the latter getting the better of Quentin Monville but firing narrowly over the target too.
As the game entered it’s final quarter, Pearce made room for an effort that Joseph-Johnson parried, once the opportunity had been offered to him by Aguiar’s forward burst.
Armstrong carried the ball from left to right but his attempt hit a blue shirt before the winning goal arrived as short while later.
It emanated from a throw-in deep on the right, taken by Colbran to Myles-Meekums and returned to our attacking full-back once more. Diallo became the next recipient who then gave Myles-Meekums the opportunity to break into the penalty area, where Mo stuttered as substitute, Jamie Dicks stumbled and fell and James White’s attempted clearance hit the boot of the still-alert Diallo who was gift-wrapped a second goal, with only five minutes to go.
One last, late scare saw Joseph-Johnson deliver a high ball into the box from the halfway line that, as it dropped, appeared to catch the hand of Colbran but, despite one or two appeals, no more penalties were awarded and Reds ended the day top of the table.