My first visit to Bognor and I was very impressed. The stadium was neat, the bacon/egg roll was good, the clubhouse was warm and the pitch was absolutely superb (at the end of the game, it didn't have a mark on it and it couldn't have been more different to the pitch at Clapton!!).
As for the game, in the disastrous early period, Hendon were repeatedly sliced open by the Bognor midfield and there were a couple of good finishes. The cross and header for goal no.2 were top class. At 3-0 down we started to play with Da Costa enjoying success on the left wing and chances were created, although Bognor did hit the bar. Overall though, Mr McCann wasn't a happy chap and took off Braithwaite at half-time (he'd been berating him constantly for not getting tight enough to his man) and replaced him with Goode.
Hendon dominated the 2nd half in terms of possession and plenty of joy came down the our right wing but quite often the final ball wasn't there. On the one occasion a really good cross came in, Leon Smith mistimed his jump and headed well over from about 8 yards. Bognor broke well as Hendon committed bodies forward and probably had the better chances to score further goals and finally did score (although I missed that because I was talking to Barney the scarf wearing Bognor dog at the time!) The 2nd half was perhaps summed up by the final action of the game, when a superb last ditch block on the six yard line denied Hendon a certain goal.
In summary, the opening period killed Hendon, the Belal goal (blasted from close range and nearly taking a defender into the net with it...) gave a glimmer of hope, the neat 2nd half football extended that hope, the Leon Smith miss extinguished the hope and the 4th goal put the tin lid on it. A defeat yes, a capitulation no. I expect the team to bounce back.
I thought the quality of Bognor's football was outstanding and on the day we were well thumped by the better team, but what we have to remember is that they are playing in a one horse town and it is so much easier for them to obtain funding from local sources to build a successful club.Just consider the miracles that our manager and his players and staff have performed in order to get us up near the top of the League and the herculean work that the club officers and backroom helpers have put in to enable us to punch well above our weight this season.Most of the current campaign we have been entertained by the sort of performance that our hosts put in yesterday.
I would echo all of that Deadman. We worked really hard to get back into the game after a calamitous start and if the headed goal hadn't been chalked off for offside we would have gone in at 2-3 and all of a sudden the game would have had a different dynamic. Very kind of Margate to loan back to Bognor their star striker especially for the game.....it felt like it was Bognor's Cup final beating a top three side such are the high standards that we have now set for ourselves. Time to look forward, it wasn't quite all doom and gloom yesterday we just started badly against a good opponent and didn't get the breaks when we needed them.
Do they still....
do wicked bread pudding like I remember they used to back in the day????? As for the result yesterday, just a bad day at the office which we are entitled to. We are fourth in the table about 4 weeks from January and have only lost THREE games in the league. Top marks must go to the manager backroom staff all the matchday helpers but mostly the players who have week in week out put in performances that have been a credit to the club and themselves and hopefully we can continue our form till the end of the season whether we claim a play-off spot win the league or finish just out side the play-offs I will be happy that we are finally a force to be feared and when we move into Silver Jubilee Park we will go from strength to strength!!!