Sunday 31st October 2004

The Kent Website
Supporting Kentish Football

Lordswood turn the tables

LORDSWOOD manager Paul Piggott was pleased with his players after they bounced back from a poor FA Vase defeat to beat top of the table side Hythe Town 2-1 on Saturday, writes Stephen McCartney.

Piggott admitted his players let him down against Hillingdon Borough but they showed a lot of character to bounce back.

After missing a couple of good chances, Lordswood took a deserved lead in the 16th minute.  Andy Skinner's free kick from inside his own half picked out Mike Cunningham who ran into the penalty area before lobbing goalkeeper Nick Day.

Hythe equalised in the 30th minute against the run of play when Darren Walmsley crossed into the six-yard area for prolific striker Roy Godden to nip in front of debutant goalkeeper Scott Muttock to head home.

The home side missed many chances in the second half and were made to pay for them when Lordswood scored the winning goal seven minutes from time.

Ashley Russell and Richard Radbourne combined on the left and Russell's cross to the near post saw Andy Doerr nip in front of his marker to flick the ball home from six yards.

Piggott admitted: "It was a much needed win.  We had a hard month with fixtures and injuries where we haven't picked up any league points and got knocked out of the FA Vase, then we found ourselves going to Hythe, who were top of the league."

Making the trip to Reachfields would have been a daunting prospect for the basement side, but Lordswood turned the tables with a deserved victory and now climb above Slade Green and Greenwich Borough in the table.

Piggott added: "We go into every game knowing we can do well, but we had to be top of our game to win at Hythe, which we were.

"We rode our luck at times, they put us under pressure during the second half, but we took our chances and defended very well."

Speaking about the defeat at home to Hillingdon Borough seven days earlier, Piggott said: "It was the worse performance we've had since I took over in December 2003.

"We were just poor all over from start to finish from goalkeeper to forward and we got what we deserved, which was nothing.

"The players let me down and the club."

Lordswood gave 26-year-old goalkeeper Scott Muttock his debut at Hythe after signing him from local side Plough & Chequers, but he was replaced after 68 minutes, injuring his back whilst making a save.

Piggott explained why he signed the goalkeeper and dropped seventeen-year-old regular number one, Jake Slade.

"We've conceded a lot of sloppy goals and haven't protected Jake Slade, whose confidence was a bit low.

"But he will bounce back because he has got quality in him, and at 17-years-old, he has time on his side."

Slade, having been dropped for the game, made a return in goal at Reachfields, when he replaced the injured goalkeeper for the final 22 minutes.

Lordswood entertain unbeaten side Tunbridge Wells in the Premier Division Cup next Saturday at North Dane Way, and Piggott is anticipating another tough fixture and insists his side are a lot better than the league table suggests.

"Tunbridge Wells haven't lost yet so it's going to be another tough one, but we are not worried about other sides, if we do what we are capable of, hopefully we can win the game.

"I do keep telling the players we are a good squad of players and we are better than what the league table says."