Thursday 01st September 2005
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Tuesday 16th
November 2004
Southern League
Division One East
Brian Spurrell reports from
Park View Road
Erith & Belvedere 0  
Berkhamsted Town 2 Maycock 42 (og),
Porter 75

No home comforts for Deres

A bizarre own goal set Erith and Belvedere on the road to defeat on Tuesday evening, as they went down 2-0 at home to Berkhamsted Town.  The result took the visitors up to third place in the table but halted the Deres' recent rise.

The settled look of the Deres' defence in recent weeks was disrupted by Marc Cumberbatch's knee injury in the first minute of Saturday's excellent win at Barking and East Ham. 

Tom Maycock was switched to central defence to join Lewis Tozer, with Sam Friskey coming in at left-back.  Up front Ian Pullman, the loan signing from Margate, made his home debut alongside Chris Dickson. 

It was tenacious play from these two that won the ball in the first minute to set up Paul Abbott for a shot that flew just wide.  Unfortunately, that was as good as it got for Erith, as once again the supply lines between midfield and attack were stretched and the forwards had little support. 

Berkhamsted were better organised in midfield and created chances for Mark Reed, Ben Porter and Andy Mullins, all off target.

A potential turning point came on the half-hour when Pullman was released by a through ball from midfield with a run on goal. 

Visiting keeper Sam Mazurek came out of his area to challenge the run, and used his hand in clearing the ball.  In a situation where many a keeper would have been sent off, Mazurek not only got away with a yellow card but pulled off a fine save to stop Abbott's well-struck free-kick. 

With no substitute keeper, Berkhamsted would have been in trouble with a stricter referee: instead they took the lead ten minutes later in bizarre fashion. 

Shortly after a good save from Porter, Glen Knight's indecision about catching a cross led to a corner for the visitors, from which Maycock sliced the ball into his own net with no opponent within five yards of him. 

Berkhamsted started the second half promisingly, Mike Chennels cleverly making room in the box before his shot was blocked and Reed having a header saved from a Route One move. 

Abbott shot across the face of goal for Deres, with no team-mate close enough to convert the chance, and Pullman again broke clear but sent his effort far too close to Mazurek. 

As Abbott and Pullman had further chances, Deres looked capable of getting back into the game until Porter was allowed too much space just outside the box, and beat Knight with a firm effort from 20 yards, to seal the points with 15 minutes remaining.

Joe Nartey returned from a two-month injury layoff and Dickson, who did not have his most effective match, was replaced by Dean Fenton late on, but apart from a miss by Pullman, Deres did not threaten to come back. 

Of their eight league defeats, six have come at home, and there are two more home games in succession.

Erith & Belvedere: Knight; Schillaci, Friskey, Tozer, Maycock, Pullman, Briggs (Nartey 73), Abbott, Standen, Dickson (Fenton 83), Whittington.  Subs: Chapman, Hales, Seitsonen.

Berkhamsted Town: Mazurek; Cowen (Copson 44), Nevin (Burfoot 69), Chapman, Hughes, Hibbert, Mullins, Fattorusso, Reed (Perry 80), Chennels, Porter.