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Hornchurch fitness pleases boss

PUBLISHED: 13:35 28 July 2014 | UPDATED: 13:35 28 July 2014

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane shares a few words with Thurrock rival Mark Stimson during their pre-season friendly (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane shares a few words with Thurrock rival Mark Stimson during their pre-season friendly (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO c/o 27 Plaiters Way, Braintree, Essex, CM7 3LR - Editorial Use ONLY - FA Premier League and Football League images are subject to DataCo Licencing restrictions

McFarlane delighted with win at Thurrock

Hornchurch's George Purcell hits the post with a penalty against Thurrock (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)Hornchurch's George Purcell hits the post with a penalty against Thurrock (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

Jimmy McFarlane was extremely pleased with Hornchurch’s fitness levels in Saturday’s pre-season match against Ryman One North outfit Thurrock.

Second-half goals from Junior Luke and Martin Tuohy secured a 2-1 win, as Charlie Stimson struck for Fleet, as the friendly at Ship Lane was played in boiling hot conditions.

Urchins boss McFarlane was pleased with how his team coped, especially considering they had played Bishop’s Stortford only two days before on Thursday.

He said: “It was an excellent game. They are a really good side and I am sure they will have a really good season.

“Our energy levels were excellent and bearing in mind we played on Thursday as well and a lot played 90 minutes.

“I thought we were a little off the pace for the first 20 minutes against Thurrock, but that was probably down to the tired legs from Thursday and after that we did really well.”

There was mixed fortunes for two Hornchurch forwards as George Purcell missed a penalty on his return from a slight niggle, but strike partner Tuohy scored the winner.

It was Tuohy’s first goal for the first team since scoring in last summer’s pre-season match against Cambridge City, a game in which he suffered a serious injury which ensured he had a frustrating 2013/14.

McFarlane initially had another brief scare with the striker against Thurrock too, adding: “Everybody said to me it was a typical Martin Tuohy goal, a tap in from a few yards out.

“I did have a panic though, when a tackle, a fair one, caught him. He had a shot and got caught afterwards and was down in huddle, but he was fine thankfully.”

McFarlane was not too disheartened with Purcell’s miss and lauded the opening goal of the game by summer recruit Luke.

“I hope it isn’t a trend for George because he is normally excellent with penalties,” he added.

“He did say to me beforehand that he felt rusty, because he has missed a few games with a little knock, and he wasn’t up to his usual standards, but that is to be expected.

“It is good for Junior’s confidence and it was a really great goal as well. He took it really well, went past one player then put it past the other and curled it in.”

Hornchurch are due to visit Hemel Hempstead on Thursday before visiting Folkestone on Saturday.

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