Agutter delighted by Hastings United results – but now wants performances to match
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United have ground out two wins in the past week without being at their fluent best and Agutter says the ability to do that bodes well for the challenges ahead.
Goals by Jason Fregene and Tayo Oyebola earned a 2-1 Isthmian south east division win at Hashtag United on Saturday that put the Us seventh in the table.
On Tuesday night Agutter’s men needed a 5-4 penalty shootout victory to come through their Sussex Senior Cup tie at Crawley Down Gatwick after dominating the tie but being held to a 0-0 draw.
The manager admitted neither game was a classic but praised his players’ attitude and effort for getting the jobs done.
They have a chance to build on the victories with back-to-back home league games – hosting Kingstonian tomorrow and Carshalton on Tuesday night.
They do so having seen a change of personnel in defence.
Craig Stone, who was assistant manager during Paul Barnes’ spell in charge, has signed for Isthmian south east side Ramsgate, while Agutter has signed centre-half Tommy Penfold from Cray Wanderers.
Agutter said: “It was a bit of a slog against Hashtag. They were aggressive and put us under pressure and we had to change formation and then reinforce that change to the lads at half-time.
"We were better in both boxes but at no time was it comfortable.
"Against Crawley Down Gatwick we had 85 per cent possession and they were not interested in scoring or counter-attacking. We had a stonewall penalty not given and a goal ruled out that was miles onside but got it done in the shootout.
"So results have been good but we now need to improve performances and I’m confident we will.
"Seeing Craig Stone move on is a huge loss but I’m really pleased to sign Tommy Penfold. I coached him when he was a 13-year-old 5ft winger and now he’s a 6ft 5in centre-half. He’s a local lad and just the sort of character we need.”
Agutter expects tough tests in this week’s home games but is looking forward to reuniting with the Pilot Field faithful again.