SCEFL Premier Division 2020-21

Crowborough 0 - 0 Fisher
Saturday 5 September 2020 - 15:00Crowborough Community Stadium, East Sussex TN6 3BU

Crowborough 0-0 Fisher
Saturday 5 September 2020
SCEFL Premier Division

By Ian Murphy for The Non-League Chronicles –

Fresh off the back of an impressive win against Horsham YMCA in the Emirates FA Cup on Tuesday, the Fish arrived in Crowborough in good spirits ahead of the SCEFL Season opener.
For the first time since taking the reins in 2019, Manager Ajay Ashanike named an unchanged Starting XI, with a slightly different substitutes Bench as he went looking for an opening day win.

Right from the off, the Fish were on the front foot, playing some superb attacking football and controlling possession for long spells. The first real effort of the game came in the seventh minute, when Jamie Yila left two defenders chasing shadows before seeing his low cross beaten away by the Crows keeper. The danger wasn’t properly cleared although the referee deemed an attempted bicycle kick was a foul, so the move was cut short.

Yila continued to impress and linked up well with Jacob Katonia and Josh Biddlecombe to create a couple of decent chances, with Jack Gibbons, Luke Thomas Rob Brown taking the reins down the opposite wing, but the Crows back line held strong. The best chance of the half saw Katonia pick the ball up after a slick break away from a Carpanini free-kick. In acres of space Katonia unleashed a long range effort, curving towards the far post, but the Crowborough keeper positioned himself well to make a good save.

The second half started off in much the same vein, with the Fish continuing to press forward looking for an opener. To mix things up Biddlecombe was replaced by Lemba, who came on and caused the Crows some problems with his physical presence.

A succession of corners certainly kept the pressure up, but still Crowborough held firm, but with the chances getting closer each time it seemed like only a matter of time until the breakthrough would come. Rocha came on in place of Gibbons to freshen things up, and again there was a flurry of corners.

Then, just after the hour mark, it seemed to all that the deadlock had been broken. Yila carved out some space, released Lemba who slotted the ball in to an open goal. As he turned away to begin his celebrations, and as the Fisher Faithful began to celebrate, the offside flag was spotted and delight quickly turned to despair.

Shortly after came another run of corners, but a collision between the Crowborough keeper and someone in amongst the crowded back post area quelled the threat on this occasion.
Time began to run out, and with the Fish back line enjoying a solid display and now an ever quieter affair, the traveling fans began to accept the inevitable. For the second season on the trot, the season opener ended goalless and a long way from home.

It was however a positive performance, with lots of attacking football, and a defensive display that ensured Dan Carpanini only got his gloves dirty collecting a couple of corners. Plenty to learn from and plenty to work with!

Man of the Match- Sam Fitzgerald. Nothing got past him in the air, dominated his bit of the pitch throughout.

Travelling attendance- 22, Total Attendance 130.

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