McFarlane: Hornchurch were second best

PUBLISHED: 09:30 27 January 2016

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Hornchurch manager Jim McFarlane (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

Urchins manager says team were fortunate to get a draw against Tilbury

David Knight (Red 15) goes close to a goal for Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)David Knight (Red 15) goes close to a goal for Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Hornchurch boss Jimmy McFarlane admitted his side were lucky to escape with a point from their 0-0 draw at home to Ryman North promotion rivals Tilbury.

Urchins were under pressure for much of the first half and were only level at the break following a string of super saves from goalkeeper Sam Mott.

Sam Mott of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)Sam Mott of Hornchurch (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

The hosts were much better after the break, but the closest they came to scoring was when striker David Knight smacked the bar with a header midway through the second half.

Hornchurch closed to within four points of leaders Sudbury with the point, but McFarlane believes the team were fortunate to do just that after being severely tested by the Dockers.

“I thought Tilbury deserved more out of it than we did. I thought they were keener than us, they started sharper than us and were first to every second ball,” said McFarlane.

“We were off the pace for the whole of the first half, but I thought we started really well in the second half. We took a bit of control, but after about 20 minutes we let them back in. In the end, it was one of those days where you take a point if I’m brutally honest.

“Dave should have scored at the far post with a header that hit the bar, Sam’s had a great game and our two centre backs were outstanding, but I thought we were second best.”

Before the game all eyes were on forward George Purcell who was hoping to break Alan Noonan’s 38-year-old club scoring record, but it was Mott who took the plaudits with a stunning display in goal.

Every time the Urchins defence was breached, Mott had a response and McFarlane was delighted with his stopper’s display.

“I’ve said on record a few times that I think Sam’s the best keeper in the league and I think he showed it against Tilbury,” added McFarlane.

“We came in at half time at 0-0 and I think that was solely down to him. People get carried away with saves saying they are brilliant when they are bread and butter, but the tip over the bar in the second half was great.”

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