Angels slump to home defeat by basement side
By Jim Rowe
Early strike sees the points go back to Sussex
A 2-0 defeat away at the hands of play off chasing Metropolitan Police during the week may on paper at least have some justification but when the Angels suffer a 1-0 reverse on a home Saturday game against, at the start of the match, the basement side Burgess Hill Town then eyebrows will be raised. According to the Longmead management team there is no crisis, the side just didn’t have their right shooting boots on, the home team had all the play and created far more chances than their opponents. Others might suggest a different situation and whilst on yesterday’s evidence the boys in blue did have a terrible afternoon in front of goal failing to work a nervous looking goalkeeper, there may be other issues to address in this side. The midfield lacks real bite particularly when out of possession and the defence seems to suffer from alarming lapses in concentration. Compare that with the visiting No. 4 Stephane Ngamvoulou a recent recruitment to the Hillians ranks who had an excellent game and made a real nuisance of himself all afternoon showing effort, support and at times genuine skill for his teammates which it has to be said is sadly lacking just at the moment from some of the Angels players. Manager, Steve McKimm and his coaches need to install this spirit into their players or ring the changes or maybe both.
Burgess Hill claimed a precious three points in their fight to escape relegation as they recorded a second successive win in four days.
The Hillians took the lead after just seven minutes when Aaron Smith - Joseph ran through unchallenged and unleashed his shot past Angels keeper Jonny Henly. This early setback for the home side forced them into action and chances were created for Nathan Elder, a Xavier Vidal free kick and Alex Akrofi but the visitors defence was well organised and withstood the pressure.
At the other end Stephane Ngamvoulou forced a good save out of Henly and the same Hillians player was involved again in the 39th minute when he set up Ibrahim Forfana but the final effort was just wide. The half ended with Akrofi just wide with a header for the home side from Joe Turner’s cross.
The Angels started the half applying pressure on their opponents with chances falling to Elder, Ryan Worrall, Joe Turner and Sam Bantick but their challenge started to fade after the hour mark and it was Burgess Hill who looked likely to add to their score. Smith-Joseph, Lee Harding, Che Krabbendam and Stephane Ngamvoulou all had chances to make the game safe for Burgess Hill but in the end they had Angels substitutes Dan Bennett and Dan Thompson to thank for missing a pair of glaring opportunities that preserved their slender lead.
Deep in stoppage time there was a melee involving 80% of the players, and both benches in front of the dugouts. The outcome was that McKimm was ‘sent off’ although it is likely that video evidence will be needed to prove who the perpetrators actually were. Whatever the rights and wrongs, the incident played right into the hands of Burgess Hill disrupting the passage of the game and ensuring they went home with all the points. It was truly a miserable and depressing end for the Angels supporters who had braved the wet weather and they made their feelings known by heading straight for the exit, the second the referee blew the final whistle.