Horley Town FC
0 - 5
Combined Counties League Premier Division South
Tuesday September 28, 2021, 7:30 pm
The New Defence
Combined Counties League Premier Division South
The Bulls’ found themselves in the relegation zone. With only pointless Molesey below them, they had only played three league games due to their twin pronged attack on Wembley. Two of those league games had seen Jersey goalless for the only occasions in their history, albeit both away against strong teams in this section.
For the Bulls it was a quick return to The New Defence, Horley Town’s ground, as the U23 side had made their debut there six days before. Horley were lying fourth in the league with a 5-1-2 18-13 record. They had bounced back from two heavy early season defeats in the league and F.A. Cup and had won 4-1 at Croydon in the F.A. Vase on Saturday.
The temporary fuel shortages in the South-East of England caused concerns for Horley. Their mower needed topping up in order to cut the pitch so “Bazz” the groundsman dutifully queued for ninety minutes at a garage in order to obtain some.
They were also concerned that their players might not be able to make the game but all eleven who started at Croydon were present. They made two changes with Andy Hall and Josh Barnett pushing Kevin Wilson-Gomez and George Hyde on to the bench. Hyde had been the ‘keeper for Horsham Y.M.C.A. when they had lost 1-10 at Springfield at the start of the season so perhaps that was the reason for the latter.
Matt Rapson and George Branton were also familiar with the Bulls as both had played in last week’s U23 match. Their “danger” man was Mario Quiassaca with 7 goals so far this season and alongside him up front was George Membrillera who had scored against the Bulls for Dorking Wanderers Reserves in the League Cup two seasons ago.
The Bulls were missing four significant members of their team from Sunday. James Queree, Kamen Nafkha, Jake Prince and Sol Solomon were not available but they welcomed back Adam Trotter from holiday and Fraser Barlow from the Hampshire Club Team Golf semi-finals.
In addition Calvin Weir and Rai Dos Santos made their first team debuts for this season having last played two and one seasons ago respectively. Dos Santos had though played at Horley last week for the U23s, as had Joe Kilshaw and Sammy Sutcliffe.
Jack Griffin took Queree’s place in central defence with Luke Campbell taking the arm band. Trotter replaced Nafkha, Margaroli came in for Ruben Mendes-Pestana and Barlow taking on Prince’s attacking role.
Mendes-Pestana was on the bench alongside Sutcliffe, who had had a 9 minutes debut on Sunday, as well as Weir and Dos Santos.
It had been a day of heavy showers, with more forecast for later in the evening, but it was to turn out far more dramatic than that. There was a definite autumnal feel to the weather as Jersey kicked off attacking the Horley “Griffins” Rugby Club end to the South East in this “Gatwick derby”!
Lorne Bickley immediately showed attacking intent with a shot after just 20 seconds and he put a header just wide four minutes later. However, it was a powerfully struck Jay Giles 30 yards free kick that opened the scoring. It travelled like an arrow in to roof of the net confounding the seemingly well positioned Barnett as it did so. Giles stung Barnett’s palms with another free kick from “only” 20 yards soon after but it was not as well directed as the one from which he had scored.
Barlow doubled the lead midway through the half when fed down the right by Jonny Le Quesne. He turned his defender, made a good run, cut in, and scored left footed in the left corner. Just after the half hour Horley had their best opportunity of the night when Quiassaca was put through by Ethan Ford. Euan Van der Vliet was up to the task, parrying his initial attempt and deflecting the rebound away too. This was the signal for the rain to return, initially as an annoying drizzle.
Kieran Lester was similarly thwarted five minutes before half time by a double save from Barnett and then a defender, but Bickley increased the lead just before the break. He spun his defender and fired in to the roof of the net with a first time shot. There was though still time for a Horley counter attack with the resultant shot being blocked on the line as the half time whistle blew.
The second half had not long started before rumbles of thunder could be heard to the north. Bickley immediately scored his second when he broke down the right and from the right corner of the box “passed” the ball into the left corner for the fourth goal. Calvin Weir was introduced for Kilshaw on the hour and shortly afterwards Barnett and Lester were both down injured as they collided going for a loose ball. The gods were obviously not happy with this as the wind increased and heavy rain teemed down.
Lightning was also visible in the distance and there was the possibility of the match being abandoned and all the hard work in getting the match on, going to waste. Not only that but the loss of three valuable points for the Bulls. Which in fact happened 20 miles to the north where the two teams immediately above Bulls in the table, Banstead Athletic and Balham, had to stop after 50 minutes with Balham 2-1 up.
Bickley was denied an opportunity of a hat trick as he was withdrawn midway through the half for Dos Santos. Barlow had a shot blocked on the line and Mendes-Pestana came on for Trotter. Barlow was not to be denied and with a quarter of an hour to go he scored his second as Jersey went five up to match Sunday’s score against Crowborough Athletic.
Horley’s Jack Poplett picked up a knock which reduced the home team to ten players for the last ten minutes as they had already used all five of their substitutes.
Le Quesne was replaced by Sutcliffe for the last few minutes and then collected the only caution of the evening in bizarre circumstances. Having left on the far side of the pitch he collected a mac from the changing room and then, during a break in play, sprinted across to the dug outs. The linesman informed the referee that he had entered the field of play without being signalled on and he collected a “C6” caution.
Horley Town 0; Jersey Bulls 5 (Jay Giles 7, Fraser Barlow (2) 25 & 78, Lorne Bickley (2) 44 & 53)
Attendance – 86
Programme – £1, 60pp colour
Horley Town – Josh Barnett, Matt Rapson, Ethan Ford, Jack Poplett, Andy Hall, Chad Goulter, Lewis Pearch, Ryan Smith, George Membrillera, James McElligott (c), Mario Quiassaca
Substitutes – George Branton (for Membrillera 68), Kevin Moreno-Gomez (for Ford 49), Josh Rapson (for Pearch 60), Brad Peters (for Smith 73), George Hyde (GK for Barnett 75)
Claret (Light Blue)/Claret/Light Blue; GK All Green, Sub GK All Orange.
Anthony Jupp (Manager, but not present), Matt Chapman (Coach), Richard Midadje (GK Coach), Chelsea Myers (Physio.)
Jersey Bulls – Euan Van der Vliet, Jonny Le Quesne, Jay Giles, Jack Griffin, Luke Campbell (c), Joe Kilshaw, Fraser Barlow, Adam Trotter, Lorne Bickley, Luca Margaroli, Kieran Lester
Substitutes – Sammy Sutcliffe (for Le Quesne 81), Calvin Weir (for Kilshaw 60), Rio Dos Santos (for Bickley 68), Ruben Mendes-Pestana (for Trotter 71), only four substitutes, no sub GK
Blue/Blue/White; GK All Yellow.
Gary Freeman (Manager), Kevan Nelson (Assistant)
Referee – Ross Murphy (Richmond)
Assistants – Patrick Jolliffe (Lingfield) & Gerry Kehoe (Kingston)
Caution – Le Quesne (JB) 83 (after being substituted)
Corners – Horley Town (2) 3; Jersey Bulls (2) 4
Player of the Match Award (commentator) – Fraser Barlow (JB)