Mullets hold on after ‘crazy’ last 20 minutes

Asa Nicholson was on target for Arundel against Shoreham
Asa Nicholson was on target for Arundel against Shoreham

Arundel Football Club joint boss Barry Pidgeon admitted his side were a little fortunate a crazy final 20 minutes did not cost them on Tuesday.

Pidgeon’s side ran out 4-2 victors at home to Shoreham but had to withstand a fine late fightback from a young and inexperienced Mussels side.

Mullets looked to be cruising to a third successive Southern Combination League Premier Division win as strikes from Max Thoms, Asa Nicholson, Scott Tipper and Dave Herbert gave them a 4-0 lead just past the hour.

However, two wonder strikes from Joe Patching gave Shoreham faint hope. It could have been an even more nervy final ten minutes for Arundel but Jack Edge fired a late penalty wide.

Pidgeon said: “We were cruising at 4-0 with the game dead and buried, really, but then we had a crazy ten minute spell. We lost our shape, kept giving the ball away and just did not defend properly.

“We gave them two goals, then if the penalty goes in we would have been hanging on a little. In the end, it was another good win for us but it should have been a lot more convincing.”

Thoms fired Mullets in front on 24 minutes. After collect-ing Dan Teeder’s pass, a neat first touch gave him room and he fired low into the bottom corner with his second.

The home side had a second ten minutes before the interval with Herbert’s knock-down finding Nicholson, who crashed home a half-volley.

Arundel looked to have all three points secured when Tipper made it 3-0 on 52 minutes. A neat move saw Herbert find Dion Jarvis and his crisp cross left Tipper with the easiest of tap-ins.

Herbert got the fourth from the penalty spot, after Edge tripped Thoms, on 65 minutes.

Mussels were handed a lifeline with 18 minutes to go with Patching’s 25-yard strike finding the top corner.

They had a second three minutes later when Patching fired home a low shot.

Arundel were all at sea and when Rory Biggs fouled Harry Heath, Shoreham had a chance to grab a third with ten minutes left. However, Edge smashed wide from the spot as the home side held on for a third straight league success.

ARUNDEL: Fernandes; Peake, O’Hagan, Dudas, N.Da Costa; Teeder, Jarvis, Thoms, Nicholson; Herbert, Tipper. Subs: L.Da Costa (Teeder), Jones, Jenkins (Dudas), R.Biggs (Jarvis).

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