Donnelly: We'll turn things around after tough start

Evan Archibald struck his first Shoreham goal in Saturday's defeat at Carshalton Athletic. Picture by Stephen Goodger
Evan Archibald struck his first Shoreham goal in Saturday's defeat at Carshalton Athletic. Picture by Stephen Goodger

Sammy Donnelly has every confidence his Shoreham Football Club squad can turn things around after a tough start to life at Bostik League South level.

A 4-1 defeat at Carshalton Athletic on Saturday was followed by a 3-0 home loss at the hands of Cray Wanderers on Bank Holiday Monday.

Mussels have now lost their opening four games since promotion to Bostik League South standard for the first time in the club’s history and are bottom of the table.

Despite what has been a tough introduction to life in the Bostik League, Shoreham boss Donnelly insists it will be turned around.

He said: “We had a tough couple of games over the course of the weekend against two quality teams.

“It’s been a tough start at this level but it will and must be turned around.

“I’ll maybe look at adding a few new faces to freshen things up, I think it’s a case of getting our first point. We’re lacking on a little bit of confidence, we’ve faced some top teams early in the season, so hopefully we’ll start picking up points as the season progresses.”

Cray Wanderers forward Bradley Stephenson, on loan from League One Gillingham, struck twice in the first half to give Cray a 2-0 lead at the interval in the Bank Holiday encounter at Middle Road.

Lee Denyer put through his own net seven minutes after the restart to put the match beyond Mussels.

Shoreham boss Donnelly felt Wanderers were the best side his team have faced this season and said: “They had a 17-year-old on loan from Gillingham in the forward areas and an incredibly talented 19-year-old striker. They were frightening going forward and we looked more and more leggy as the game went on.”

Ten-man Mussels were sent crashing to an emphatic 4-1 defeat at Carshalton Athletic two days earlier.

Jamie Cradock netted an own goal three minutes in, then received a straight red card for violent conduct which left Shoreham with it all to do.

Ola Sogbanmu, Jordan Cheadle, from the penalty spot, and Peter Adeniyi were Carshalton’s other scorers.

Mussels forward Evan Archibald struck his first Shoreham goal as they grabbed a late consolation.

Donnelly admitted it was always going to be a struggle, especially after the start they made. He said: “One positive was Evan getting his first goal. Other than that we really struggled.

“We knew of their quality going in to the game then we were two goals and a man down inside the opening half-hour.”

Shoreham travel to division-higher Bostik League Premier Division Kingstonian in the FA Cup first qualifying round tomorrow (7.45pm). If the game is drawn, the replay will take place at Middle Road next week.

SHOREHAM v Cray Wanderers: Broadbent; Gathern, Denyer, Woodford, Tan; Packer, Timms, Burton, Cradock; Archibald, Simmonds. Subs: Smith (Packer), Caplin (Burton), Goldson (Cradock), Quadri, Myers.

SHOREHAM v Carshalton Athletic: Broadbent; Packer, Woodford, Gathern, Hand; Nazala, Timms, Burton, Cradock; Archibald, Simmonds. Subs: Caplin (Hand), Goldson (Nazala), Smith (Timms), Quadri.

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