Well football really is a funny old game. A month ago the Barrowmen were in a bit of a slump. On a 6 game winless run, playing OK, creating chances, but not taking them. Fast forward a month and 5 wins on the bounce, with 18 goals scored and 4 conceded, is a timely reminder of how quickly fortunes can change in this game.
The last of these five wins came last night with a calm and comfortable 4-1 win over newly promoted Midhurst who had started the season well and were sat in a very credible 5th place going in to the game. If truth be told, the match was a well competed and relatively equal affair, however it always felt that Steyning had an extra cutting edge in the final third (see first paragraph from a month ago!!)and were playing the better possession football and they certainly created the lions share of the chances over an entertaining 90 minutes.
It took an almighty gaff by the Midhurst rear-guard to set The Barrowmen on their way as their defender under pressure from MOM Rondel hurried a firm back pass that seems to wrongfoot Bird in the Midhurst goal and he could only watch on as a lonely spectator as the ball rolled home in to the bottom corner. A thing of nightmares. 1-0 and just 7 minutes on the clock.
Ten minutes later an the Barrowmen were 2 up. Making the most of a good spell a free kick was won out wide on the right. Barnes whipped in a delightful free kick with his left foot and the pace and power beat the heads of all onrushing attackers and defenders and the ball flew in to the top corner. A classic free kick whipped across the face of goal that can be so hard to defend.
This put the Barrowmen firmly in control, Meehan was getting plenty of success down the left flank, in his best game for the club to date, and Barnes was pulling the strings well from deep with a great range of passing. During the half Langford missed a great one on one opportunity blazing over high and wide before having another chance well saved by Bird in the visitors goal.
At the other end the Midhurst front line were eager and full of running but Robinson, and El-Hage on full debut, were in commanding form at the back, and the energy of full backs Rondel and Hallett to get up and back continually was particularly impressive.
Half time 2-0
The second half continued at a lively pace and although chance were at a premium we all new the next goal was vital. And so it came for the Barrowmen on the hour. A fine team move found Langford in an advanced position and his clever lay off found Radmore on the overlap and he finished well in to the bottom right hand corner. The goal of the night.
The third goal pretty much killed the game as a competitive event. Langford added a fourth ten minutes from time, his sixth goal in three games, as he calmly dispossessed the keeper who had rushed out to clear, and as three defenders rushed back to the goal line to cover he spun sharply and finished with a beautifully floated chip over their heads from 25 yards.
There was still time for the visitors to grab a late consolation goal, which their efforts had deserved. It was sloppy one from Steynings point of view as it was a free header from a corner. Then in added time Hallett nearly made it five as he got on the end of a cracking, flowing team move but his header from 8 yards flew straight at the keeper. A yard either side and it would have been a goal.
So the final score finished 4-1 and a good night for the Town as they marched up to 6th in the table and look forward to hosting Alfold on Saturday in another league game.
Steyning: Lucas, Hallett, Rondel, Robinson, El-Hage, Johnson-Fisher, Barnes, Radley-Martin, Radmore, Meehan, Langford Subs used: Clark, Downer, Howell, Bradley Not used : Timms
MOM: Josh Rondel
Match Report: Woody.