Thursday 01st September 2005

Piggott: I can consider this one of the hardest jobs in the Kent League

Lordswood manager Paul Piggott was pleased with his team after they bounced back from Saturday's 3-1 defeat at home to Hythe Town to beat second from bottom Deal Town 3-1 away in midweek, writes Stephen McCartney.

Deal started the better of the two teams and this was reflected in the seventh minute when Dave Bathgate's twenty-yard free kick curled around the wall but also narrowly over the crossbar.

More chances came Deal's way with Danny Smith heading over from another set-piece and John Ovard hooking a shot straight at visiting goalkeeper Darren Watson just before the half-hour mark.

Lordswood started to get to the pace of the game and with seven minutes before the break, they took the lead.  Sean Hetterley was sent free down the right beating his marker and reached the by-line.

His initial cross was blocked but his second cross found Mike Cunningham who blasted into the net from eight yards.

Two minutes before the break, the visitors almost doubled their lead but Hetterley's low cross found Andy Doerr whose shot was blocked by the goalkeeper's legs.

The second half started like the first with the home side settling down and within two minutes Bathgate's shot was deflected past the post by Ovard from three yards.

Deal equalised in the 59th minute when Smith saw his shot deflect off Sam Colyer's leg and into the net from a shot from the edge of the penalty area.

Lordswood regained the initiative in the 62nd minute when Ronan O'Connor's free kick to the far post was knocked back by Beggs and Doerr rifled a shot into the net.

Lordswood wrapped up this much-needed victory in the 70th minute.  O'Connor's free kick was headed back towards goal by Doerr to Hetterley whose shot fell at Gary Peck's feet to score from close range.

Deal should have clawed a goal back with eleven minutes remaining when Majoram ran onto a flicked header but his shot was saved by Watson.

Shortly afterwards, Beggs almost made it 4-1 when he pounced onto a back pass but his chip cleared the goalkeeper and the crossbar.

Speaking on Wednesday evening, Piggott said: "It's a good win for us after losing to Hythe Town on Saturday.  Any defeat has got to be followed up with a better performance and we were lucky enough to get that, and also a win at Deal.  It's a good performance and a good win and you couldn't ask for much more."

Lordswood are now thirteenth in the Go Travel Kent League Premier Division and they make the trip to Beckenham Town on Saturday.  The Lords will be looking for a victory at Eden Park Avenue and to close a five point gap between the two sides.

Piggott added: "We've got everyone near enough available now so I've got the squad together I want.  There is no reason why we can't go on and put a run together.  It will be tough up at Beckenham, but we've lost once in four games now, so I am hoping we can keep the run going."

Piggott replaced Barry Zillwood earlier in the season, after the experienced manager decided after eight years in and out of the club it was time for another man in charge.

Piggott revealed: "Barry thought his time was enough and he had his reasons for packing up.  He was manager at Lordswood for eight seasons on and off.  He felt the club could do with a change and he needed a rest.  He made me his assistant for a couple of months and then I was offered the job.

Lordswood are one of a number of clubs in the Go Travel Kent League that don't pay their players but Piggott still wants his players to go out onto the pitch and give the bigger clubs in the league a hard fought battle.

He added: "I can consider this one of the hardest jobs in the league.  We have to know our limits in the Kent League and we're not naive to know we won't finish in the top three or four.  All I can ask of all our players is for them to give everyone in the league a good game of football."

Like all clubs not backed by high finance, it's down to Lordswood to produce local home grown talent.  This season's reserve team is hugely made up of last season's under eighteen side.  This season the club haven't got an under eighteen side in the Kent Youth League but this is on Piggott's agenda for next season.

Beckenham Town  vs  Lordswood, 3pm, Saturday 27 March 2004, @ Eden Park Avenue, Beckenham, Go Travel Kent League Premier Division