DAVE HERBERT’S goal 17 minutes from time gave Arundel Football Club all three points away to Worthing United on Tuesday evening.
Both teams worked hard and showed plenty of endeavour throughout on a heavy pitch in the Southern Combination League Premier Division match.
A number of chances came and went for both sides during the first half. It was Mavericks who should have opened the scoring after just five minutes when Mullets failed to clear Alfie Gritt’s low cross and Paul Elliott’s shot skimmed a post from eight yards.
Five minutes later, Arundel missed a glorious opportunity themselves when Harry Russell raced on to Herbert’s clever reverse pass but fired wide of the far post with the outside of his right foot.
United keeper Matt Evans saved shots from Spencer Adams and Rory Biggs, before Gritt volleyed over from close range at the other end.
Chances continued to fall to both sides as Herbert side-footed against the base of a post on 26 minutes.
Arundel’s Liam Da Costa then fired straight at Evans, before Arundel keeper James Fernandes claimed Wayne Joseph’s skidding low effort at the second attempt.
Herbert then had another opening two minutes before half-time but was denied by Evans’ legs.
There were fewer chances in the second period but Elliott almost gave Mavericks the lead when he cut in from the right and sent a left-footed shot just wide of the far post.
Moments later, Pat Rose got through on goal but was denied by Fernandes’s legs, before United were forced into a reshuffle when left-back Ben Hall went off with a calf injury on 67 minutes.
United boss Nigel Geary felt that disrupted his side and Arundel went ahead six minutes later. Moments after Evans had kept out Russell’s deflected volley, Herbert broke through on goal after a mistake at the back and coolly fired home.
United had a couple of openings to earn a point but Fernandes was out quickly to deny substitute Aaron Tugnutt and Rose then shot straight at Fernandes from 18 yards in injury-time.
Mullets joint boss Barry Pidgeon said: “It’s a really good result, it was a tough game tonight. The pitch was very difficult and we had three players go down with cramp, which shows how hard it was.
“I’m really pleased. We’d had three bad results recently, with the defeat to Lancing, draw with Hailsham and then the bad result away to Little Common, so it’s nice to get a game on again and get a good result.”
Mullets had several openings before going ahead and Pidgeon said: “We had three or four chances, we’ve hit a post and hit three shots straight at the keeper. It’s one of those nights where you think it’s going to come back and be costly.
“However, we defended very well and took our chance in the end.”
ARUNDEL: Fernandes; N.Da Costa, O’Hagan, Dudas, Adams; L.Da Costa, R.Biggs, Jones, Nicholson, Herbert, Russell. Subs: A.Biggs (Jones 63), Jenkins (Adams 74), Tipper (Herbert 86), Peake, Hooker-Meehan.
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