Hornchurch hail hat-trick king George

PUBLISHED: 19:18 28 November 2015 | UPDATED: 19:18 28 November 2015

George Purcell of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

George Purcell of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO)

©TGS Photo +44 8450 946026

Ryman North: Hornchurch 4 Haringey Boro 1

Hornchurch enjoyed an easy afternoon in Ryman North as they brushed past Haringey courtesy of a hat-trick from George Purcell.

Urchins had failed to find the net in their goalless draw at home to Harlow Town in midweek, but the home fans were not kept waiting long as Purcell opened the scoring after eight minutes.

A smart Joey May corner found the striker unmarked on the edge of the area and he drove a low shot into the left side of the net, crowning an assertive start for the hosts.

Haringey found it difficult to get the ball out of their own half as almost every aerial battle was won by the home captain Elliot Styles.

Borough goalkeeper Ashley Harris was forced into a reaction save when Joey May’s inswinging free-kick from the left managed to evade everyone and looked to be sneaking inside the back post.

But the visitors’ first chance of the match came as Anthony McDonald had his well-struck shot blocked behind, with Rakim Richards putting his effort well over the bar from the resulting corner.

It was Hornchurch who extended their lead shortly after when Tobi Joseph won possession on the halfway line before playing in Purcell who drew a clear foul from Dan Walker inside the area.

The striker struck the subsequent penalty low and hard to the keeper’s left on 24 minutes as things began to look ominous for the away side.

The second goal may have led to some complacency from Urchins, though, as Haringey produced several decent opportunities and McDonald burst into the box after riding Abs Thompson’s mistimed tackle, but could not hit the target.

Hornchurch striker Joseph was then unable to turn in a low cross from Purcell on the byline, before a superbly directed delivery from Haringey’s McDonald found Ishmail Kamara with acres of space at the back post, but he put his header calamitously wide.

A powerful free-kick from Purcell was beaten away by Harris as half-time approached, before the visitors nearly managed to pull one back.

Styles had the ball stolen by Kamara after attempting a flick in his own area, but the striker’s touch was frustratingly heavy and the ball rolled into the grateful arms of the alert Sam Mott.

The second half began in similar fashion as Hornchurch continued to dominate, scoring their third goal of the afternoon on 55 minutes with an excellent passing move.

A spell of prolonged possession ended with Calvin Poku threading a ball through to Thompson, who had time and space and took a moment to compose himself before ramming the ball firmly into the net via the post.

The visitors turned to substitute Jerome Martelli who was into the action within seconds and booked for a theatrical dive inside the area, much to the amusement of the local supporters.

They were not laughing for long, though, as the winger got his boot on the end of a Dan Aristidou free-kick to ruin Mott’s hopes of a clean sheet.

The goal came as little more than consolation for Haringey, who were clearly beginning to tire while attention turned to Purcell’s pursuit of his third goal.

After a number of chances to find the striker in space went begging, May’s pass out from defence did eventually allow Purcell to run at the defence.

And after riding a tired tackle before going onto round the keeper, Purcell cooling finished off his man-of-the-match display with a well-earned third goal 15 minutes before the end.

The closing moments provided just enough time for Joseph to see an effort fly inches wide of the top corner before the referee’s whistle brought a comfortable afternoon for Hornchurch to an end.

Jimmy McFarlane must now prepare his side to face promotion rivals Thurrock, his former club, at Ship Lane on Tuesday after Fleet were knocked out of the FA Trophy at Bury Town.

Hornchurch: Mott, Thompson, Styles, May, Cooper, Goodacre, Jospeh, Dove (Collis 89), Poku (Knight 65), Purcell, Luke (Chouman 70). Unused subs: McKenzie, Coyne.

Haringey Boro: Harris, Richards, Fenton, Tabiri, Scott, Walker, Aristidou, Fashanu, Allen (Lakole 79), Kamara, McDonald (Martelli 60). Unused subs: Gudgeon, Benjamin.

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