Isthmian League action: Lancing battle - but are well beaten at VCD

After holding hosts VCD at 0-0 for 45 minutes, Lancing ended up well beaten at Oakwood and fell to 18th spot in the Isthmian south east.

Lancers player-boss Kane Louis
Lancers player-boss Kane Louis

Both sides went into the game on a run of three league defeats and in the absence of Matt Daniel, Mark Goldson came back into the Lancers side and Darius Goldsmith slotted into midfield. With Conrad Honore having departed to Burgess Hill Town, Lancing operated with a back three of Liam Hendy, Will Berry and Joe Rye, with Mo Zabadne and Mo Juwara providing the width.

Lancing keeper Alieu Secka was the busier of the two keepers, his first test coming on eight minutes when he had to turn the ball behind for a corner. At the other end Mark Goldson brought a good full length save from Sam Mott on 12 minutes. Secka was called into action again with a save which saw him push the ball onto the upright and behind for a corner met by a powerful header which hit the bar and rebounded into play. Lancing were able to clear the ball after two attempts.

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On 29 minutes, the first controversial incident occurred. Lancing had been awarded a free kick and Ayman El-Mogharbel tried to prevent a quick kick being taken. This led to some pushing and shoving and Lancing felt El-Mogharbel was lucky to be shown yellow and not red.

Eight minutes later, more controversy occurred. Joe Rye was covering the run of the powerful No9, Jeff Duah-Kessie and preventing him from cutting in toward goal. A slight contact with his shoulder saw the No9 take a tumble and the referee instantly signalled a penalty. But the penalty was blasted over.

Lancing survived a couple more scares: Finn Daniels-Yeoman spotted the danger when Duah-Kessie muscled his way past Rye and was able to put the ball behind for a corner. Then a poor clearance from Secka presented a chance for the Vickers to take the lead but he reacted well to make a good save.

But Lancing’s hope of going in level at half-time was dashed when Juwara lost possession wide on Lancing’s left and a swift break forward finished with a cross to the right picking out Youssef Bamba, who had time and space to curl the ball into the top corner.

Lancing’s good start to the second half was dealt a blow on 53 minutes when a mishit clearance from Secka fell to Jeff Duah-Kessie and the ball was soon in the back of the net.

A second yellow card was shown on 55 minutes after a foul on Zabadne by Vickers' Theo McKenzie. On 61 minutes, Mo Zabadne was replaced by Bradley Campbell-Francis.

Lancing came close to reducing the arrears when Kane Louis did well to hold on to the ball in the box and float the ball to Juwara sliding in on the far post, but he was unable to apply the finishing touch.

Louis Evans came on for Goldson on 69 minutes but, before he could begin to have an influence on the game, Lancing’s fate was sealed with a third goal. Louis was robbed of the ball in the opposition’s final third and a quick counter attack created the opening for Bamba to get his second and the Vickers third on 71 minutes. Four minutes later, right-back Chris Edwards cut in and hit a goal-bound shot - Secka was down to his left and seemed to have it covered but the ball squirmed through his hands and over the line.

The current Lancing team never allow their heads to drop. Right to the end they were pushing to get some reward for the amount of effort put into the game. Campbell-Francis did well to win the ball and fire in a low hard drive which keeper Mott dealt with comfortably. Hendy got a shot on target which was pushed behind for a corner and Darius Goldsmith had the final say with a forceful run towards the by-line only to be brought down for what looked a clear penalty. But no, he was given a yellow card, presumably for what was seen to be a dive.

It was an enjoyable day out for the committee and supporters, despite the result and the committee’s MOM selection went to WBerry, who, together with Rye, continues to impress with his composure under pressure, despite being given a severe test by the powerful Duah-Kessie.

One of our committee commented: "We are happy to support our team, even though results may be disappointing, because we can see how much effort and togetherness is being shown. Hard to argue that Lancing deserved three points but a 4-0 defeat was not a true reflection of the balance of play."

Lancing officials said they were sad to learn of the departure of Honore after he had played for Lancing for the past couple of years.He is a player of great ability and always performed well in Lancing colours.

Lancing: Alieu Secka, Mohamed Joumaa Zabadne, Mahamadou Juwara, Will Berry, Liam Hendy, Joe Rye, Darius Goldsmith, Finn Daniels-Yeoman, Kane Louis, Mark Goldson, Ismaila Diallo. Substitutes: James Rhodes, Bradley Campbell-Francis, Louis Evans, Ashley Wadhams, Harrison Parker.

* Lancing host Sittingbourne on Saturday.