Shoreham went down in a five-goal SCFL Premier Division thriller at Crawley Down Gatwick on last night ahead of a huge FA Cup test this weekend.
Efforts from Kai Bichard and Andrew Dalhouse – his sixth in five games for the club – were not enough as Mussels were beaten 3-2 at Crawley Down.
Shoreham would have been hoping to go into what is going to be a testing FA Cup preliminary-round tie away to two-divisions-higher Southern League Premier South side Walton Casuals on the back of a positive result, but that is not the case.
Mussels boss Sammy Donnelly, who led Worthing to the first round proper earlier in his managerial career, wants his team to show what they are capable of at Walton Casuals.
He said: “We’ll have to be a lot better than we were against Crawley Down but we go to Walton Casuals with nothing to lose.
“I’ve had them watched, we know how hard it is going to be but we’ll have a good training session tonight in preparation for a massive FA Cup game for this club.
“I was disappointed with the Crawley Down defeat but that will be quickly forgotten should we get a result at Walton Casuals.”
Former Shoreham man Michael Belli fired Crawley Down ahead after 28 minutes on Tuesday before Bichard levelled things up two minutes later.
Mussels were caught on the counter following a corner at the other end, with Josh Martin finishing off a sweeping move to restore the home side’s advantage a minute before the break.
Sam Cane added a third 12 minutes after the restart but Dalhouse’s free-kick gave Mussels hope with 15 minutes still to play. Substitute Luke Usherwood squandered a great late chance as Donnelly’s side were beaten.
n Forward Kai Bichard netted a minute from time to fire Shoreham to an impressive SCFL Premier Division victory over much-fancied Eastbourne Town on Saturday.
Bichard’s smart finish ensured Sammy Donnelly’s side were 2-1 winners over Town at Middle Road – making it two wins from their opening three league matches.
Summer signing Andrew Dalhouse bagged his fifth goal in four Shoreham appearances to hand the home team a 27th-minute lead. Ex-Mussels striker Evan Archibald levelled from the penalty spot minutes after the restart but Shoreham would go on to win it. Bichard flicked over Eastbourne Town goalkeeper Jason Tibble on 89 minutes as Mussels wrapped up all three points.
SHOREHAM v Crawley Down Gatwick: Broadbent; Firmin, Tuck, Dunk, McLennan; Garrivier, Myers, Rhodie, Myers; McCormick, Dalhouse, Bichard. Subs: Kirk-Patrick (McCormick, 45), Usherwood (Garrivier, 75), Touahri.
SHOREHAM v Eastbourne Town: Broadbent; Firmin, Tuck, Dunk, McLennan; Myers, Rhodie, Thasarathar; McCormick, Dalhouse, Bichard. Subs: Garrivier (Thasarathar, 45), Kirk-Patrick (Tuck, 70), Olulode, Touahri, Proto-Gates.
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