Horndean 1-0 Moneyfields – Match Report

By Jack Norris

Horndean kicked off their 22/23 Wessex League season with a 1-0 victory over rivals Moneyfields in a fierce PO Postcode Derby

Rudi Blankson’s second half strike on debut was enough to secure the points for The Deans in front of a crowd of well over 300 at Five Heads Park.

The game took off in dramatic fashion as Moneyfields keeper Callum McGeorge was shown a straight red for a mistimed challenge on Rudi Blankson just 3 minutes in. The early dismissal meant centre half Tom Cain would have to take the gloves, as Corey Heath came on for Seiden to help Moneys reshape.

The referee was forced to reach into his back pocket once again just shy of the half hour mark, as a clumsy challenge from Deans’ skipper Sam Hookey saw him sent off for a second booking.

Horndean were yet to have an effort on target during the opening 40 minutes, but were handed a golden chance to grab the lead when Briggs’ late challenge on Blankson meant Horndean were awarded a penalty. Connor Duffin however failed to convert, as he blasted the spot kick well over the bar.

Moneys were inches from taking the lead on the brink of half-time, as Laycock squared the ball to Hutchings, who’s close range back heeled effort was narrowly off target, as the sides went in goalless at the break.

Cameron Scott was to thank for keeping honours even early into the second period, as he was quick off his line to deny Chandler through on goal on 49 minutes.

Horndean eventually found a breakthrough with little under 20 minutes remaining, as debutant Rudi Blankson made another sharp move from the left side before firing a 20 yard rocket into the bottom corner to give the Deans the upper hand.

Moneys still created chances as they searched for an equaliser. Hutchings missed out on a chance to bring proceedings back to level terms, as his header off a right sided freekick was wide.

Some valiant defending from the hosts helped them see out the remaining minutes with their lead intact. The game reached its climax with no shortage of drama, as makeshift Moneys keeper Tom Cain was sin-binned for dissent deep into stoppage time, as Jack Lee was forced to play out the remainder of his Five Heads Park return in the Moneyfields goal.

Michael Birmingham’s side held on for a valuable 3 points to start the season, with their attention quickly turning to Saturday’s FA Cup Extra Preliminary round trip to Thatcham Town, whilst Moneyfields travel to Bemerton Heath.

Attendance: 331

Horndean XI: C Scott, R Taw, C Merritt, S Hookey (C), L Dempsey, E Wakley, A Lis, L Kimber, C Duffin, T Tierney, R Blankson

Moneyfields XI: C McGeorge, J Chandler, J Briggs, H Birmingham, J Lee, T Cain, H Sargeant, D Seiden, S Hutchings (C), J Franklyn, C Laycock

You can download a free digital copy of ‘The Deans’, the official matchday programme here

Photo: Dave Bodymore

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