K Sports 4-0 Lordswood - I feel like it was all too easy from start to finish, admits Lordswood assistant manager Owen Price

Monday 30th September 2019
K Sports 4 – 0 Lordswood
Location Cobdown Sports & Social Club, Station Road, Ditton, Aylesford, Kent ME20 6AU
Kickoff 30/09/2019 19:45

Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division
Monday 30 September 2019
Stephen McCartney reports from Cobdown

K SPORTS manager Paul Atkins says his side are starting to turn the corner after thrashing a poor Lordswood side on a rain lashed night at Cobdown.


K Sports striker Matthew Gething scored a first half brace to put the home side in the driving seat before the outstanding right-winger Regan Corke drilled in a third before substitute wideman Josh Brown ensured it was a miserable night for Darren Anslow, who was serving the last of his four match stadium ban, by scoring a late fourth.

K Sports climbed up three places into fifteenth-place in the Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division with 11 points from 10 games, while Lordswood remain in the bottom six with eight points from as many games.

“A massive turning point was last Saturday getting that late goal (to win 3-2 at Fisher) and taking it into today,” said Atkins.

“We knew we can take most teams on, on the day when we play like that. It’s well deserved. We were by far the better side and it could’ve been more in my eyes.

“I think the first 10 minutes we played really well and then we let them into the game, which is going to happen at every level of football to the top flight to this flight.  Teams are going to have possession of the football and football is sometimes about a little bit of luck.

“I thought once we rode that 10 minute spell, once we rode that situation, we dictated the football.

“I think also coming out for the second half I said to the lads the next goal was massively important being 2-0 up and we done exactly what we had to do.

“If you look at the opportunities that we created the score could’ve been seven and I don’t think for one second the three points weren’t deserved.  We dictated the second half massively and the result just shows that.”

Lordswood assistant manager Owen Price, who turns 34 next week, has been in charge of team affairs during Anslow’s stadium ban.

“First half-an-hour I thought we started well,” said Price, who was forced to make four changes to the team that lost 3-0 at Welling Town at the weekend.

“I feel like we’re in a bit of a rut.  We’ve had eight injuries, big injuries, like they’re part of our 11/16 and you take eight players out of any team they’re going to struggle.  We had another two injuries on Saturday, so we’re down to the bare bones.

“But one thing I can’t have is the way that we rolled over. I feel like we rolled over too easy.  We’ve conceded too many goals in the last five games, which we don’t give ourselves a chance when we’re not putting them in at the other end.”

The opening exchanges were rather frenetic with the ball whistling from end-to-end as both sides had a shoot on sight policy, which tested both goalkeepers, who showed good hands, especially K Sports keeper Jack Howard.

Lordswood created the first opening when left-winger Jordan Samuel cut in from the left wing before stinging Howard’s fingers with a 30-yard drive after only 83 seconds, before the ball immediately went up the other end and James Alderman’s first time drive from 22-yards was comfortably dealt with by Lordswood keeper Kameron Edwards.

Lordswood then started to take control of the game and should have taken the lead with five minutes and 27 seconds on the clock.

Centre-half Jai McKinlay split open the heart of the K Sports defence as his long ball split open George Benner to put striker Luke Medley through on goal but he lashed his left-footed drive just over the top of the near post as he wanted to smash his shot into the top left-hand corner.

“I think if he goes across goal rather than near post, I think it’s a goal but where he’s gone near post you haven’t given yourselves any room for error,” said Price.

Atkins simply said: “It was a massive opportunity for them!”

Lordswood central midfielder Jamie Taylor played a short free-kick into Joshua Jackson’s feet and he unleashed a left-footed drive from 30-yards, which skipped off the wet artificial turf and was held low to his left by Howard.

Lordswood were playing well at this stage of the game as Tyrone Smith’s hooked pass released right-back Julian Marku, who played the ball inside to Medley, before Marku fed Daniel Lopes, who skipped past Jack Bray in the middle of the park before flashing his right-footed drive across the keeper and past the far post from 22-yards.

Medley then drove past three defenders in the final third before speeding past last-defender Benner but lacked the finish by drilling his right-footed drive over the top of the near post from 15-yards.

K Sports then started to wrestle control back from their visitors and in the 15th minute Connor Pring played a 20-yard pass inside and along the deck for Benner, who drilled a 35-yarder, which brought a comfortable save from Edwards.

A big kick from Edwards was superbly brought under control by Medley, before he played the ball out to Samuel, who fed the ball back to Medley, whose right-footed low drive from 15-yards was held by Howard, low to his right.

Twenty minutes in, Alderman floated in a free-kick into the Lordswood box from the right and Gething steered his header straight at Edwards, who caught the ball before he launched a big kick up field and Samuel cut in from the left and his low angled drive was saved by Howard at his near post just 14 seconds later.

Smith played the ball in from the right wing to Jackson, who twisted and turned his man before getting a low shot away, which was held well by Howard, low to his left.

Another big kick from the Lordswood keeper was trapped by Medley in the centre of the pitch and he played the ball out to Smith, who fed Medley, who forced Howard to dive to his right to grab hold of the ball as it drifted towards the far corner of the goal.

But the game turned in K Sports favour when referee Billy Woods awarded the home side a penalty, following a slice of misfortune for Lordswood.

Pring released winger Regan Corke down the right wing and his pace took him past left-back Aaron Dhaliwal before he whipped in a deep cross into the Lordswood box.

Lordswood’s right-back Marku sliced his clearance towards his team-mate standing near him and the ball struck McKinlay’s hand and a penalty was awarded.

Gething stepped up and his right-footed penalty was superbly saved by Edwards, who got down low to his right to parry, but Gething pounced on the loose ball to hook the ball over the keeper in the centre of the goal to score with 27 minutes and 20 seconds on the clock.

Atkins said: “Gethin’s a great lad, on Saturday he scored me a goal and takes a penalty really well. Today, the negatives are, there isn’t none with Geths!

“Gething will give me 100% all season.  You look at him and he’s scoring now. We’ve put him up top because Charlie Smith has been injured and Charlie is a big player and Gething has stepped into his shoes.  I believe that Gething has got a lot to offer and do you know what, he’s a massive leader our there for me.

“You can sit there and say he’s missed that one but I also look at the penalty he’s missed and then taken the rebound and he wins all the headers and he does all the ugly stuff so it’s really positive.

“It’s all about the desire to make the seconds isn’t it? Even the pros miss penalties so it’s making sure you get the seconds and the desire that you make sure that you do so.”

Price added: “To be fair, I don’t know if it was a penalty or not? I couldn’t really see to be honest but great save from Kam, great save.

“But it’s difficult with penalties because the kicker’s taking it from 12 yards and everyone else is 18 yards back so they’re almost got a head start on you anyway so to try to get in front of the taker you’ve got to foul him. It’s difficult but I think we could’ve been a little bit closer.”

Corke then started to terrorise Lordswood’s left-back Dhaliwal, latching onto Beau Landau’s ball down the right, sprinting and cutting into the box before cracking his shot against the near post from a tight angle, eight-yards from goal.

“Regan Corke, he’s unplayable! You get that ball behind that full-back there’s no one who can catch him,” said Atkins.

“He’s on fire and I believe he’s got more to give as well. We’re teaching Regan certain things in games when to come into the game and when to defend. He’s bringing that all to his game. He’s a young lad and he’s a great, great lad and he's got the desire to go on to bigger and better things.”

Price admitted: “Regan Corke’s a good player, like an old-fashioned winger. He was direct and he had a good game.

“I’d say apart from the first half-an-hour, I would say they were the better side for the rest of the game, which was disappointing considering we were chasing the game. You would’ve thought we would have spells in the game but we didn’t really have many clear cut.”

K Sports were now looking like a totally different team as the confidence drained swiftly from the Lordswood team, having now extended their winless run to five games after tonight.

Left-back Adam Hooper launched a long throw into the Lordswood box and the ball was cleared and put back into the box and fell at Alderman on the edge of the six-yard box but he was denied by Edwards, who dived low to his right to smother the ball and make a comfortable save.

Dominant K Sports were inches from doubling their lead with 38 minutes on the clock when Gething dropped deep to start a counter-attack, playing the ball back to Alderman, who chipped the ball down the left-channel for Gething to win a foot-race with Gilman (who took a whack) before he slipped in Corke, who rolled the ball across the keeper and watched it trickle agonisingly past the foot of the far post, despite Simon Kabamba’s last-ditch attempt to slide in to poke it into the bottom corner.

Atkins said:  “We’re creating them and that’s what we keep asking the boys, keep putting those balls in.  I keep telling them to get across the keeper early. We’ve got that desire to do so. We’re going to create chances now. We’ve got pace which we didn’t have at the beginning of the season.”

K Sports’ wait for their second goal was short lived, however, as they scored with 44 minutes and 23 seconds on the clock.

Central midfielder Pring released Corke, who sprinted down the right wing again before cutting the ball back from the by-line for Gething, who showed more desire to get to the near post than his marker to poke his shot into the bottom right-hand corner from eight-yards.

Atkins said:  “We created those chances time and time and time again first half.  Pring put in Regan down that right side and he’s going to keep going and we did it second half and we punished them and Gething was breaking his neck to get across, that’s the difference and he’s learning so it’s good.”

Price added: “I thought they were their best players, the winger (Corke) and the eight (Pring). I think they were probably their best two players from what I’ve seen anyway.”

The Paperboys nearly delivered a third on the stroke of half-time when Pring floated in a cross from the right for Alderman to send his free-header across the keeper and past the far post.

Both camps were asked their thoughts at the break.

Atkins said: “Well, it’s difficult because we were on the end of it last week against Fisher so going in at Fisher we were 2-0 down.

“I said we could go out there with the wrong attitude and we’ve got to show the desire and the belief and keep pressing and keep wanting the ball and keep putting it to Regan so we kept doing that.

“We kept playing the way we wanted to play, forcing the play down the right. We knew that was our chances to break the down and as you can see the result showed.”

Price added: “I feel like it was all too easy, too easy from start to finish!

“It was difficult because like I said the first half-an-hour, I thought we were the better side so to go in behind was like it almost changed the team-talk because what you wanted to say had to change because we were down, we needed to get a goal, so I just said carry on the way we were playing but we have to be more clinical.”

K Sports were the better team for a large part of the second half too and their football was a joy to watch on a miserable soaking wet Monday night.

Alderman floated in a right-footed free-kick into the Lordswood box and Gething’s aerial threat was a consistent factor of the night, guiding his header across the keeper and past the far post inside the opening four minutes.

Landau’s through ball was aiming for Kabamba in the final third but the ball clipped off Gilman’s heal and fell kindly for the K Sports right-back, who swept his hanging shot across the keeper and past the far post.

Lordswood looked well beaten on the hour-mark as it appeared that they threw in the towel and didn’t fancy it on such a miserable night.

You could argue that they were missing their manager.

Price said:  “It’s done now, it’s finished, he’s had four. It’s difficult for Darren because it’s like being in jail because he can’t see us play. We speak everyday probably about 50 times a day. We’re always on the phone but it’s difficult because of the jobs that we share.

“It’s now one person’s job, if that makes sense? It’s been difficult. I’m not ready to be a number one yet that’s for sure, it’s stressful, really stressful, so I’m alright being a number two right now.”

Atkins added: “We peppered them to be fair and that’s no disrespect to them either. If that was a fight, it would’ve bene stopped.  I think the inevitable is inevitable. The result is the result but we were defiantly the better side second half.”

Lordswood threw on George Jardine at the break – but he too failed to stop the outstanding Corke.

Print released Corke down the right and he played Kabamba on the overlap and he whipped in a great first time cross towards the far post for Alderman to smash his volley over from a couple of yards out as he nipped in front of Marku.

The game edged in Lordswood’s favour as soon as Atkins lost the services of centre-half Tom Montgomery, who picked up a knock to his knee and Bray slotted in from midfield to partner Benner at the heart of the K Sports defence.

Lordswood rallied for a short time as Samuel got in behind Kamamba down the left before hanging in a cross towards the near post where Medley steered his near post header just wide from inside the six-yard box.

Medley played the ball out to Samuel, who showed quick feet to dance past two K Sports men before cutting in and stroking his right-footed drive towards the bottom left-hand corner from a yard inside the box, forcing Howard to dive to his right to push the ball behind for a corner.

However, any signs of an unlikely fightback vanished when K Sports went up the other end to score their third goal of the night, which was timed at 30 minutes and 42 seconds.

Gething received the ball on the edge of the Lordswood penalty area and swept a delicious crossfield pass along the deck for Corke, who got to the ball before Jardine.  The highly-rated winger took a touch before drilling a stunning right-footed shot into the top right-hand corner from 18-yards.

Atkins said: “We’re talking about Gething, who has seen Regan bomb down the right-hand side and it looks lovely but Gething is one whose instigated the play. He’s dictated to other teams.  Regan is a good player because he’s got good players around him. We knew that was there weak spot. Regan on a good day no one can deal with him so he’s unplayable and I’ve seen it now so I’m really pleased, really pleased.”

Price added: “I feel they haven’t had to work hard for any of their goals.  I feel like, don’t get me wrong, they were decent goals but I feel like they haven’t had to work hard for them, which is disappointing.”

Lordswood were to be denied inside the final 10 minutes when Taylor’s swept through ball split open Benner to put Jackson through on goal and the midfielder tried to place his left-footed shot across the keeper to find the bottom far corner, only for Edwards to stick out his left-foot to delay the inevitable.

Price said: “That’s what I mean about being clinical because they put those chances away and we didn’t!

“You don’t give yourselves a chance by not putting those chances away and you’re always relying on your defence to get you out of trouble.  There’s only so much they can keep getting you out of trouble because you’ve got to start pulling your weight at the other end!

Atkins added: “Jack Howard’s come into me, we’ve brought Jack in. It was another addition to our squad that we felt that we could improve.

“Jack’s handling is decent, he’s played at a decent level and he hasn’t let us down to be fair so going on the spell that they had, we changed a little bit due to Tom Montgomery getting a little knock. He’s caught him on the knee so he’ll be alright for the next game.

“We had to change and put Jack Bray back in from centre-midfield to centre-back and bring Lewis Foreman on, who I thought done very well. He’s very tidy with the ball Lewis and he’s one for the future with Beau Landau.”

K Sports wrapped up the night by scoring their fourth goal, which was timed at one minute and 44 seconds into stoppage time.

Left-back Hooper played a free-kick down the line to Brown, who cut in from the touch-line into oceans of space before drilling his right-footed angled drive across the diving keeper from 35-yards out, the ball nestling nicely into the bottom far corner.

“Decent goal! It was the best goal of the night,” said Atkins.

“I think the keeper could’ve done better. It skipped through the rain.  I said to Josh and the boys to hit them because it’s going to take a spin because it’s a very difficult surface because if the keeper does save it, the rebounds are going to be there.

“Josh deserves the goal as well. He’s started the last four games for me and I put him on the bench tonight. He’s played a lot of games since he’s come in for me. This is the highest level that he’s played.”

Price added: “Again, they haven’t had to work hard for that. I feel like we’re too nice to play against. I don’t mean going around ironing people out but you can’t just roll over and accept what’s happening.

“A lot of them haven’t played men’s football before and we’re having to call in favours to get people because we’ve got so many injuries. It’s difficult. We haven’t got the luxury to sign whoever we want because we’ve got to work within what we have at our disposal.”

K Sports travel to bottom five side Erith Town on Saturday, while Price demands a reaction from his side when they host third-placed Corinthian.

“I believe the result flattered them, we could’ve had six or seven,” said Atkins, who is confident his side will start climbing the league table.

“We’ll climb it, I know we’re capable of doing it.  Yes, I think you can see (we’re turning the corner) with the results coming through and the desire we had.”

On playing Corinthian, Price calls for a reaction from his side.

“We need a big response. Hopefully we’ll have a couple of players back, which gives us a little lift but three points will do for now, absolute minimum we need three points!”

K Sports: Jack Howard, Simon Kabamba, Adam Hooper, Jack Bray, George Benner, Tom Montgomery (Lewis Foreman 67), Beau Landau, Connor Pring, Matthew Gething (Alfie Bates 85), James Alderman (Josh Brown 73), Regan Corke.

Goals: Matthew Gething 28, 45, Regan Corke 76, Josh Brown 90

Booked: Tom Montgomery 66

Lordswood: Kameron Edwards, Juliano Marku, Aaron Dhaliwal (George Jardine 46), Daniel Lopes, Jai McKinlay, Rob Gillman, Tyrone Smith (Lucas Atkins 63), Jamie Taylor, Luke Medley, Joshua Jackson, Jordan Samuel.
Sub: Max Pell

Booked: Jamie Taylor 84

Attendance: 45
Referee: Mr Billy Woods (Bexleyheath)
Assistants: Mr David Rowland (West Malling) & Mr Ryan Cole (Herne Bay)