Burt hopes home draw will give Mussels

Jonno Melia netted Shoreham's equaliser against Ringmer
Jonno Melia netted Shoreham's equaliser against Ringmer

SHOREHAM Football Club joint manager Mark Burt believes Saturday’s 1-1 draw with high-flying Ringmer will give his side confidence for their upcoming games.

Mussels travel to mid-table Horsham YMCA in the league on Saturday and are then at Sidley in the quarter-finals of the John O’Hara Cup on Tuesday.

Burt said: “This result will give us confidence. We know we have to start picking up wins but we’ll fight to the end.

“It’s a tough away game at Horsham and then the cup game is one we’re all looking forward to. We’re battling against relegation and are one game away from a semi-final, so there is all to play for.”

Things could have been even better for Shoreham on Saturday as they had a late penalty appeal for handball waved away. Mark Pulling delivered a cross and, after the ball had bounced loose when Gareth Green, who is back playing after a few weeks in the reserves following a break from the game, challenged the Ringmer keeper, Lee Eastman’s shot was blocked and Burt said: “It hit their player’s arm and we had a couple of players booked for our protests because it was that obvious.

“Overall, the performance was superb and we defended well as a team. I gave the defence a bit of stick recently but you have to defend from the front and we did that. When the defence cleared their lines, we pushed up to try to win the second balls and we tried to stop them getting into their flowing, passing game.

“We also doubled up on Aaron Watson, who’s their dangerman, and Owen Callaghan and Ben Bowra both had superb games. It was key to our plans to stop him and we managed to do that.”

Mussels had an early opening when Louis Pople got through but his effort was saved, before Ringmer, who had a few earlier half-chances, took the lead through former Mussel Ryan Bradley on 37 minutes.

Shoreham equalised just five minutes later when Pulling’s cross was headed home by Jonno Melia for his third goal in two games.

The second half was an even affair, with Ringmer going close through a couple of Matt Percival free kicks, before Mussels had the late penalty appeal.

Ringmer had Jayson Sowter sent off for violent conduct in the closing stages.

SHOREHAM: Shaw; B.Bowra, Jordan, Davis, Jones; Callaghan, Eastman, Bant, Melia; M.Pulling; Pople. Subs: Green (Pople 45), Benn (Bant 75), C.Pulling.