Horsham 1-2 Deal Town - It's a great day for the club, says Deal Town's head coach Paul Murray

Monday 31st August 2015
Horsham 1 – 2 Deal Town
Location Goring's Mead, Horsham, West Sussex RH13 6BP
Kickoff 31/08/2015 15:00

The FA Cup Preliminary Round Replay (Sponsored by Emirates)
Bank Holiday Monday 31 August 2015
Stephen McCartney reports from Goring’s Mead

DEAL TOWN head coach Paul Murray says knocking Horsham out of The FA Cup has made it a great day for the club.

They can now look forward to a trip to managerless Ryman League Division One South strugglers Whitstable Town on 12 September after reaching the First Qualifying Round for the first time since 2009, after winning an entertaining replay at Goring’s Mead.

Deal Town were playing their fourth game in this season’s competition, having successfully negotiated a home replay to beat Southern Combination Premier League outfit Worthing United 7-1 at home, after coming away from the south coast with a goal-less draw.

Deal Town made a couple of changes from Saturday’s side that were held to a 1-1 draw at home to unbeaten league leaders Horsham, who were playing Ryman League Division One South football in April.

Deal Town stunned the home fans in the crowd of 241 by taking an early lead through Charlie Walsh’s first time finish, before doubling their lead through Ryan Philpott’s fourth goal of the season.

Horsham camped themselves in Deal Town’s half for the majority of the second half.

Walsh was penalised by referee James Humphries for committing a goal-line offence from a corner, but Deal Town’s outstanding goalkeeper Chris Whymark saved Joe Shelley’s penalty.

But when Kieron Pamment scored with a similar finish to Philpott’s goal it was game on and Horsham threw the kitchen sink at their Kent coastal opponents, who held firm.

Deal Town’s coach, Steve King was asked to leave his position in the dug-out, before Horsham were reduced to ten-men when Kevin Keehan saw red for a lunge.

Deal Town also finished the game with ten-men after midfielder Andy Miller picked up two yellow cards, but Horsham failed to find a way past Whymark and they suffered their first Preliminary Round exit since their 3-1 defeat at Tonbridge Angels ten years’ ago.

Murray was naturally delighted with the victory.

“Absolutely fantastic two goals, two outstanding games. They’re a very, very good side, a very, very good side, a very good footballing side,” he said.

“We’ve had a game plan both games and they’ve worked so absolutely ecstatic! Can’t wait to go to Whitstable now, so just looking forward to it.

“We knew this was going to be difficult here, 48 hours after probably one of our best performances since we’ve come into the club and we knew it was going to be difficult today.

“After losing Dean Hill in the first half, who’s been a stalwart for us and he’s been outstanding for us, he’s been a leader. We knew our backs were going to be against it but we stuck in there, the game plan was right.”

Horsham played an eye-catching brand of passing football from out of defence and they created their first chance after only 49 seconds.

Their back three each got at least one touch to the ball before central defender Ashley Jones hit a long ball up to Pamment, who drove forward and went close with his shot from 30-yards sailed just past the top of the right-hand post.

But when you do play out from the back, there is always a risk of being punished for a mistake and Deal Town opened the scoring with six minutes and 12 seconds on the clock.

Keehan was guilty of losing the ball to Walsh some 30-yards from his goal and Walsh strode forward, played the ball inside to lone striker Connor Coyne, who from the left-hand side of the box cut the ball back across the face of goal for Walsh to steer his first time shot past Gareth Williams from eight-yards.

Murray said: “Again, it worked! Our goal Saturday was exactly the same! We’ve been down and done our homework and watched them play. We knew what they did and we knew where their weaknesses were. They try to play around the back. We worked on it in training last Thursday and we nicked a goal on Saturday and we’ve done it again today, so the game plan worked.”

Deal Town lost their oldest defender Dean Hill to an injury in the build-up to Horsham hitting the crossbar just 183 seconds after the goal.

Jordan Clark hit a free-kick into the Deal Town penalty area where Hill lost an aerial challenge to Shelley, who headed the ball across goal for Jones to drill a shot against the crossbar from 15-yards.

Deal Town squandered an excellent chance to double their lead as the game approached 20 minutes.

Coyne swept the ball out wide to Miller out on the right and he whipped in an excellent cross into the box but Walsh took a touch and smacked his right-footed shot towards goal from 15-yards, forcing former Bromley keeper Williams to dive to his right to parry the ball away to safety.

Murray said: “Again, it was the same Saturday though. We started so well Saturday and we could’ve been three or four up Saturday and it’s exactly the same here today.”

Another chance was missed by Deal Town shortly afterwards.

Whymark’s kick went straight down the middle of the pitch, the ball was brought under control by Philpott, who danced forward before laying the ball to Coyne, who from the corner of the six-yard box sliced his right-footed shot past the foot of the right-hand post.

Horsham caressed the crossbar following their first corner of the game.

Pamment swung in a corner from the right and Whymark rose his hand up to flick the ball onto the crossbar and the ball dropped behind for another corner.

Deal Town doubled their lead with a second goal with 27 minutes and 10 seconds on the clock.

Walsh found himself down the left channel where he whipped in a quality cross in behind Horsham’s two central defenders (Jones and Clark) to pick out an unmarked Philpott, who drilled his right-footed shot across Williams to find the bottom far corner from 10-yards.

“Again, it’s things we’ve worked on in training and it’s just been executed again,” said Murray.

“Ryan’s on fire! You get him anywhere near the 18-year box, I’ll put my mortgage on him putting the ball into the back of the net!

“He’s got four hat-tricks last year so he’s got one this year already, so it’s a good goal.”

Horsham were not an attacking threat during the first half as once they reached the final third they found a resilient Deal Town back-four.

Horsham left-back Mark Knee whipped in a free-kick towards the far post from the right, the ball dropped at Terry Dodd’s feet but he was flagged offside, stabbing his shot from close range into the bottom left hand corner.

Deal Town’s holding midfielder Kristin Gregory clipped a ball out of defence, which was flicked on by Coyne and Philpott played a short pass inside to Coyne, who flashed his right-footed drive past the post from 25-yards.

Coyne then cut the ball onto his left foot before stroking his shot past the post from 22-yards, before Horsham went close with the last chance of the first half.

They swept forward in an attractive, on the deck passing move, which finished with Murfin playing the ball into Shelley, who from outside the left-hand corner of the box, curled his right-footed shot around the far post.

When asked about his thoughts at half-time, Murray said: “We changed the system! They changed their system a little bit from Saturday. They were a little bit more direct to a certain extent but we had a look at what they were doing and we came up with a game plan for the second half, which was completely different to the one first half – contain, contain and catch them on the break really, counter-attacking.”

Deal Town forced Williams into making a fine save inside the opening six minutes of the second half when he dived to his left to push Philpott’s right-footed drive around the post from 20-yards.

Danny Smith swung in the resulting corner, which was knocked down by Philpott and Coyne hit a shot on the turn over the Horsham crossbar.

Walsh’s through ball put Coyne through on goal but Williams moved smartly to off his line to smother the ball at the striker’s feet.

Murray added: “We should’ve had at least two goals, the chances we had second half but we’ve got through to the end.”

But the tide started turning in Horsham’s favour when referee James Humphries awarded the home side a penalty in the 58th minute.

Corner-specialist Pamment swung the ball in from the left and it appeared that Whymark was impeded as he attempted to claw the ball away at his far post.  However, Walsh was spotted for committing an offence on the goal-line and a penalty was awarded and Walsh was booked.

Shelley intended to slot his right-footed penalty into the bottom right-hand corner, but Whymark excelled by diving to his left to tip the ball around the post.

It was one of those penalty decisions where you looked at the person sitting next to you and ask them ‘what was that for?’

Murray replied: “Well we asked the linesman and he didn’t know!

“When Kristin (Gregory) went off the linesman said Charlie Walsh handballed it and then the referee said Charlie Walsh pushed a player – so we still don’t know!

“I’ve tried to speak to the referee but he doesn’t want to speak to anyone so I don’t like to say too much about referees.”

But what we do know was Whymark made the penalty save, his first of a string of fine saves during the second half.

Murray added: “I even called it from the dug-out. I said he was going to put it to Chris’ left and Chris will save it, so absolutely superb.”

Pamment was released down the right and reached the by-line and he cut the ball back to Ryan Storrie, and the right-back flashed a low ball across the face of goal, only just missing Murfin at the far post.

But Deal Town were on the ropes as soon as Horsham pulled a goal back in the 64th minute.

The goal mirrored Deal’s second and it was once again a number eight who put over the cross from the left.

Bradley Lewis found himself down the left channel and swept over a quality cross in behind Deal’s two central defenders and Pamment’s dinked shot flashed across Whymark to nestle into the bottom far corner from 10-yards.

Murray said: “They upped it because being 2-0 down at half-time they had to change their tactics a little bit. They sort of went 4-2-4 which actually worked in our favour because we changed our system at half-time so it went in our favour.

“Good cross. I thought for the whole 90 minutes we’ve defended stoutly. They put some good balls in, they had some chances but they’re going to have. They’re a good side, they’re a very, very good side. They’re a Ryman League side. They shouldn’t be playing at this level, but we’ve defended stoutly.”

A gobsmacked King was seen laughing as he walked towards the tunnel after being asked by the referee to leave his position in the technical area in the 66th minute.

Murray said: “Well I actually spoke to the referee afterwards as well and I spoke to him at the time because I called across to the referee and said ‘did you get a visit (from their management team) at half-time?

“He’s come across and sent Steve King off! I’m asking him why and he’s said ‘he’s had enough of him’ and Steve King didn’t actually say anything, it was me!

“I’ve been over at the end of the game and spoke to the referee and said ‘look, you’ve got that wrong, you’ve got that completely wrong!’

“I said did you have a visit at half-time? I don’t think that warrants to have a sending off for a start!

“Their management was in his changing room straight at half-time and he still sent Steve King off. Apparently he called him a cheat but no-one heard it apart from the referee, even the linesman said he didn’t hear that so I haven’t got a clue! I just have to wait for the report (from the referee) to come in.”

Deal Town were now hanging on, parking the bus in front of their outstanding keeper as Horsham upped the tempo and their urgency levels for the rest of the game.

Murray said: “The thing is what people don’t remember, our side, our back four, three of the back four are under the age of 20. When Dean Hill comes off he’s our most experienced player in our side. Our average age of our side second half when Dean Hill came off was probably 22, so they’re good young lads, they want to play football and they want to come to us and they want to learn and they defended absolutely fantastic!”

Clark clipped a long ball out of defence and Murfin’s lay-off found Pamment in acres of space inside the penalty box but Whymark dived to his right to make a great save in the 70th minute.

“Chris Wymark’s absolutely outstanding! The lad’s a local lad, half our team, more than half of our team are all local lads and he’s come in when we took over he was at the club but he’s just been outstanding and yet again today he’s just absolutely fantastic. He’s a good lad, he’s a real honest lad, brilliant performance.”

Horsham were to be denied again, by another brilliant save from Whymark.

Pamment was 40-yards from goal as he swept his free-kick into the Deal penalty area. The ball was played on by Murfin into the path of Horsham’s central defender Jones, who only had the keeper to beat.  Whymark, though, got down low at his near post to turn the drilled effort around his near post.

Horsham’s final chance of the game arrived in the final 13 minutes when Deal Town received a big slice of luck.

Shelley played the ball in behind the Deal defence and the flag stayed down as Todd cut in towards goal but somehow his left-footed flicked shot from 15-yards curled just around the foot of the far post.

Laughing, Murray admitted: “This competition you need an element of luck along the way and we had that today, but when I say an element of luck along the way, the last 20 minutes we had to dig in. We rode our luck a little bit but over the course of two games, the chances we’ve created over the two games, yes, there was enough for us, for me, to win it.”

Horsham’s hopes of forcing extra-time were halted when Keeham was red-carded for a lunge on Deal Town substitute Luke Bigginton in the final nine minutes.

Murray said: “Well I saw it. It was right in line with where we were. He’s gone in studs-up over the top of the ball, caught Luke. Luke’s got a nasty gash down his shin so yes, straight red for me all day long.”

But the Kent side didn’t have time to make that one-man advantage count as within three minutes Miller picked up his second yellow card, after his challenge on Murfin.

“Well, anywhere else on the pitch, any time on the pitch that’s a 50-50 barge,” said Murray.

“Maybe he’s timed it wrong but it’s a free-kick. There’s no malice in that. How that’s a booking, it’s not a booking in a million years!

“The referee, you can’t talk to him. I can’t speak to him so we’ll just have to wait for the report to come in.

“But I’m still gobsmacked. Andy Miller’s gobsmacked. He’s asking what for and he just said ‘you’re late’, but we’ve just got to get on with it and Deal with it!”

Cash-strapped Deal Town have scooped £3,425 in prize money, not including the money raised from four FA Cup ties.

“We’ve got to take credit for what we’ve done,” said Murray.

“It’s really pleasing for all the lads and so much for the club. There’s so many good people at the club that have paid for players and stuff like that. We’ve got no money at the club so for us to go out and put on a performance like that is fantastic!

“It’s just ecstatic for the club. The board were here today. There’s a good following as well, a good band of supporters have made their way down on a Bank Holiday Monday and we’re just going to go and enjoy it.

“The financial side of things helps the club. We’ve got no money at the club so that helps the club massively.”

Looking ahead to their trip to Whitstable Town in the next round, Murray said: “An away tie at Whitstable in the next round is quite mouth-watering isn’t it?

“We know their players, they know our players. They’ve been after a few of our players when Will (Graham) was there so it’s going to be mouth-watering and hopefully there’s a big crowd there and we can go there and have a game plan and turn them over.”

Horsham: Gareth Williams, Ryan Storrie (Adam Hunt 79), Mark Knee (Shaun Charles 46), Kevin Keehan, Ashley Jones, Jordan Clark, Joe Shelley, Bradley Lewis (Niall O’Hagan 89),  Scott Murfin, Kieron Pamment, Terry Dodd.
Subs: Jake Chadwick, Alex Duncan, Samir Hadi, Darren Boswell

Goal: Kieron Pamment 64

Booked: Ryan Storrie 64, Joe Shelley 80

Sent Off: Kevin Keehan 81

Deal Town: Chris Whymark, Liam Hark, Charlie Dickens, Dean Hill (Sam Short 12), Lee Scott, Kristin Gregory (Luke Bigginton 60), Ryan Philpott, Charlie Walsh, Connor Coyne, Andy Miller, Danny Smith.
Subs: Kwame Sarpong, Jack Tanner, Connor Ashman

Goals: Charlie Walsh 7, Ryan Philpott 28

Booked: Andy Miller 16, Liam Hark 43, Charlie Walsh 57

Sent Off: Steve King (coach) 66, Andy Miller 84

Attendance: 241
Referee: Mr James Humphries (Dorking, Surrey)
Assistants: Mr Alex Bradley (Brighton, East Sussex) & Mr Darren Evans (East Grinstead, West Sussex)