MATCH REPORT By Ryan Newman
Langney Wanderers manager Kenny McCreadie said that opponents Arundel deserved at least the point they earned after the sides played out a 1-1 draw at Priory Lane on Tuesday evening.
Arundel started on the front foot and earned a free-kick in a dangerous position after just four minutes when the returning Billy Crittenden was eased off the ball too easily and he pulled his man back.
Ashley Hawkes subsequently gave the visitors the early lead from close range as he turned in the delightful ensuing delivery from the left.
Arundel could and probably should’ve doubled their lead just minutes later when Dave Crouch found space inside the box, but he blazed his shot on the half-turn well over the bar.
The Wanderers would then produce their first true foray forward when Max Hollobone dinked a delightful ball down the right channel and in behind the Arundel back-line. The ball was collected by the onrushing Tariq Straker, who had started the game at left wing-back but had switched sides just moments before. Straker then showed good composure and quality to cut inside his man onto his favoured left foot and drive well into the area before curling his shot into the top far side corner to drag the Wanderers level.
The remainder of the first half was fought largely in midfield but both sides created one further opportunity as the half came to a close to take the lead. First, a Crouch snapshot that was destined for the bottom-right corner was well saved by Chris Winterton in the Langney goal before Evan Archibald failed to keep his effort from an increasingly tight angle down after good work from Wayne Wilkinson and Gary Ingram.
Just past the hour mark, Arundel would go close again as Hawkes would drive to the byline but his pull-back was just behind the onrushing Crouch.
With the game heading for a seemingly inevitable conclusion, it was Langney who created a final chance to snatch all three points when Adam Davidson saw his looping header tipped on to the bar by the Arundel goalkeeper from Simon Catt’s free-kick.
After the game, a clearly disappointed Kenny McCreadie said:
“We weren’t good enough tonight and they deserved at least the point they got, if not more. Their movement was better than ours tonight and so was their intent and drive to win. Our front two, Evan Archibald and Trevor McCreadie, got marked off the pitch by a 16 and 17-year-old.
Once again, we haven’t picked up a runner from a set play. He got a bit lucky because he shinned it a bit but listen, if you don’t go with your runner then you’re going to concede goals.
I’ve got Chris Winterton in goal, the best keeper in this league when he plays, by a mile. He’s used to playing at a much higher level and if it wasn’t for him, we’d have lost the game for sure.
But, the amount of times he had the ball at his feet was ridiculous. He shouldn’t be having it so much. All we did was pick up the ball and pass it back. Chris would then pass it out to one of the back three trying to build attacks but then there was no movement from the midfield and so we were forced to constantly go long.”
Next up for the Wanderers is the visit of their neighbours from the Saffrons, Eastbourne Town. Town are in good form and are undefeated in their last five league games, winning four. Most recently they shocked Worthing FC in the Sussex Senior Cup with a 2-1 victory on Tuesday evening.
“I’m not sure if they’re hitting form at the wrong time or not,” said McCreadie.
“They only beat Hassocks 2-1. Everyone else is beating Hassocks fairly comfortably. They’ve got an experienced manager in John Lambert and some very good and experienced players.