Mullets secure league status despite defeat

Alex Biggs was sent-off for Arundel after picking up two cautions on Saturday. Picture by Steve Mills
Alex Biggs was sent-off for Arundel after picking up two cautions on Saturday. Picture by Steve Mills

Arundel Football Club’s Southern Combination League Premier Division status was secured on Saturday.

A second half collpase sent Arundel crashing to a 4-0 defeat at Peacehaven & Telscombe but defeat for third-bottom AFC Uckfield Town ensured Mullets’ league safety.

Following the penultimate round of league fixtures, Arundel sit 16th - four points clear of Uckfield in the final relegation spot - with just a game to go.

Mullets manager Richard Towers was relieved to see his side ensure safety, though, he was a little frustrated they could not do it with a positive result and said: “It’s not really the way I wanted to ensure our place in this division. The aim all along has been to keep this team up and I’ve managed to do that.

“I didn’t want to do it having to rely on another result but that’s how it’s worked out. We’ve done it with a game to spare, so the pressure is now off heading into the final game of the season.

“We didn’t want it to go down to the final day and I’m pleased it’s going to.”

Arundel could count themselves a little unfortunate to not go in at the interval ahead.

Rory Biggs was denied by the crossbar, Laurence Sanded pulled off a fine stop to deny Harry Russell, while Dion Jarvis flashed an effort across goal.

Having been so dominant in the opening 45 minutes, Mullets fell apart in a ten-minute spell after the restart.

Marcus Richmond fired Peacehaven in from after 47 minutes, before notching a second soon after.

Benjamin Holmes’ heavy backpass forced James Fernandes to tip onto the crossbar but Richmond poked home the rebound six minutes later.

A crazy ten-minute spell was then complete as Sidney Adams made it three on the hour.

Joshua Marshall added a fourth 18 minutes from time, before Frazen Massen received a second yellow card after 75 minutes.

Mullets ended a man light with Alex Biggs shown a second yellow card five minutes from time.

Arundel finish their season at home to second-placed Shoreham on Saturday.

Mussels trail league leaders Haywards Heath by a point going into the final game and Towers is relishing the test.

He added: “We always like to test ourselves against the top teams in this division. Shoreham could be league champions, so we know how tough this game will be.

“It’s a chance for us to end the season on a high but to get anything we will need to be at our best.

“They are pushing for the title and will be giving it everything to get the three points.”

ARUNDEL: Fernandes; Lofting, Jenkins, Holmes, N.DaCosta, Hunter; A.Biggs, Mottershead, Jarvis; R.Biggs, Russell. Subs: Burt (Holmes), Hawkes (Lofting).

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