Lancing produce superb comeback to beat Crawley Down Gatwick

Lancing's James Rhodes scored the equaliser for Lancing in Saturday's win. Picture by Steve Robards
Lancing's James Rhodes scored the equaliser for Lancing in Saturday's win. Picture by Steve Robards

Lancing manager Naim Rouane was pleased with side’s 2-1 victory over a ‘tricky’ Crawley Down Gatwick in the Premier on Saturday.

Goals from James Rhodes and Will Berry sealed the victory for the Lancers.

The Anvils took the lead on 29 minutes when Michael Woods got on the end of a Oscar Weddell cross to tap home.

Rhodes equalised for Lancing on 44 minutes when he latched onto a through ball and coolly slotted into the bottom corner.

Substitute Will Berry gave the Lancers the lead on 73 minutes after he chested home a James Beresford cross across the six yard box to give the SCFL Premier leaders the win.

After the match Rouane praised his side for the way his team won the game.

He said: “A good win and performance against Crawley Down.

“Having played them twice previously too this fixture it was always going to be a tricky game.

“They setup in a mid to low block and were happy for us to have possession, it shows how much respect we’re being given now from sides that are going well in the league.

“This is something we identified early on in the season that would happen at times, taking possession of the ball for large periods of time in the game will give you less space to play in and teams become hard to break down and look to be a threat on the counter.

“In the first half we had large amounts of possession but we were just not moving the ball quick enough to break lines or drawing players out of their disciplined block.

“In the second half we made some slight adjustments, moved the ball far quicker and drew players out of position. We were fantastic for 35 minutes of the second half and completely dominant.

The final five to ten minutes Crawley (Down) obviously took more chances and played back to front quickly and we had to defend well to see it out.

Rouane also had high praise for goalscorer Berry.

He added: “Really pleased for Will, he’s had bide his time to get some game time here as he’s come in at a time that the sides playing very well, he’s understood that and been fantastic for us when he’s come on to the pitch, something I expected to be honest he’s got that experience and know how.

“He’ll be a great signing for us.”

Despite moving four points clear at the top of the table, the Lancing boss believes that the momentum can change in an instant.

He added: “We don’t look into the league table it’s far too early to be thinking about league positions, Eastbourne Town were seven to ten points clear at one point I believe with a game in hand, things can change quickly in football.

“We remain humble, train hard and stick to our philosophy and way of playing, in my opinion we’re a very unique side at county level and have tried to do things very different to what the county league has seen before.

“We believe in it and will continue to learn and improve as a side.

“We will just continue to work hard and give our best.”

The Lancing boss also praised his staff for their terrific season so far.

He added: “Complacency won’t kick in as we have nothing to be complacent about, whatever happens from here on, this season has been a success.

“As I’ve mentioned numerous times we don’t have a budget, the side has finished around 13th in the last 3 seasons & we don’t have a big following. We’re working hard with what we have, we’re extremely lucky to have an incredible coaching staff, in particular David Altendorff he’s been immense for me and the players also Mark Stuart, Kane Louis & Georgie our physio have been incredible.

“We will just continue to work hard and give our best.”

Lancing host Hassocks on Saturday and Rouane is expecting a test.

He added: “Hassocks will be a tough fixture, you can’t take any sides for granted at this level, you have to prepare properly and give your maximum in every fixture, everyone in this side is playing for places and to produce top performances.”

Lancing: Bromage, Honore (Fenton 80), Beresford, Williamson, Blencowe, Hendy, Woolven (Coupar 61), Santos, Fair. Rhodes (Berry 68), Finney

Unused: Juwara, Mitchell-Phillips