The AFC Hornchurch blog
PUBLISHED: 16:00 31 January 2019
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In Recent weeks, out defence has been in the habit of letting in goals either side of half time, and at Merstham last Saturday it happened once again.
Merstham scored five minutes before and two minutes after the interval, and yet again we had an uphill struggle.
To make our task more difficult we lost Sean Marks with an injury just before the interval.
Two goals down, we staged a spirited come-back, but without being able to find a way through, and Merstham broke away to score their third and decisive goal, leaving us too close to the relegation zone for comfort.
We were still without Kenzer Lee, feeling the effects of a head injury, and we were also missing Jamie Hursit and Lee Prescott, the latter two having been released.
On the plus side, Joe Christou featured in the squad, and made his debut in fine style in the second half.
Lee Prescott joined us from Margate and he also made his debut in the goalless draw at Margate.
During his short stay at Bridge Avenue he made nine appearances and scored one goal.
Jamie Hursit had two spells at Hornchurch, making his debut in October 2014 in the league cup match at East Thurrock. He made 77 appearances, including 23 this season.
He did not stay away from Bridge Avenue for too long, as he was back on Tuesday with his new club, Hashtag United, where he played against us, with his brother Lee Hursit also in the opposition side.
Hashtag last season only played friendly matches, and, without a ground, and without any senior history, they were elected into the Eastern Counties League Division 1, a very controversial decision as other, arguably more deserving clubs, were omitted.
Hashtag, who are without a ground of their own, and who groundshare at Haringey Borough, have so far taken the league by storm and are top of the table.
On their showing on Tuesday, admittedly against a Hornchurch line up that contained two trialists in the first half, and six more trialists in the second half, Hashtag could well progress further up the pyramid structure.
We took a first half lead through Sonny Dutton, who added another on 70 minutes, with a well-struck penalty.
Hashtag pulled a goal back, but Hornchurch wrapped it all up in the final minute when one of our trialists made it three goals to one.
We sometimes wonder how long it will be before we are able to field our strongest line up, as the injuries continue to mount up.
Just when we thought we would at last have James Goode in the squad, he was injured during the warm-up at Merstham, and is likely to be out for another three weeks.
Fortunately Chelmsford City have agreed to extend the loan period for Taylor Miles for another month.
This Saturday we are at home to Corinthian Casuals, who sit in mid table.
They are not strangers to Bridge Avenue, as we have played them many times in the past, though it is sixteen years since they last came to our ground.
On that occasion we won 4-0 with our goals coming from Chris Wolff, Jon Bates and two from Craig Cripps.
In our away match in October we lost 1-0, an unexpected result as Casuals were at the wrong end of the table and we were, at the time, hoping to get into the play-offs.
Seven of the players who were included in the squad have since left, so we have no idea what to expect in the return match.
We have a difficult away match coming up on Monday at Chelmsford in the semi final of the Essex Senior Cup, but at least there are no points at stake.