McFarlane targets success as Hornchurch hit the road

PUBLISHED: 13:00 13 November 2015

Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane is plotting more FA Cup success (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

Hornchurch manager Jimmy McFarlane is plotting more FA Cup success (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo).

©TGS Photo +44 8450 946026

Tobi Joseph scores a brace to get Urchins back to winning ways in the Ryman North

Tobi Joseph scores Hornchurch's second goal against Dereham (pic: George Phillipou/TGSPHOTO)Tobi Joseph scores Hornchurch's second goal against Dereham (pic: George Phillipou/TGSPHOTO)

Hornchurch’s Jimmy McFarlane is anticipating two difficult matches over the next week in Ryman North, but is confident his team can get another string of victories together.

Urchins bounced back from four defeats in all competitions by defeating Dereham 3-0 on Saturday. That has added to the belief at Bridge Avenue ahead of two away games coming up.

First Hornchurch travel to local rivals Barkingside tomorrow (Saturday), before their trip to Cheshunt on Tuesday.

McFarlane said: “Barkingside have turned the corner now under Gursel Gulfer and I keep telling the boys that everywhere we go, if you are in the top five, then expect the opposition to raise their game by that 20 per cent.

“We are a scalp so we are trying to adapt to that and pick up as many points as we possibly can.

“I watched Cheshunt on Tuesday night against Harlow and I was really impressed. I actually thought 2-0 flattered Harlow because Cheshunt were bright and energetic and well worth their victory. These are the type of games I look forward to.”

Success in those two fixtures will keep Hornchurch on course to be in the top three come Christmas time – something which is more than achievable with games still in hand.

Urchins are currently fifth, only seven points behind top-of-the-table Cray Wanderers, having played four less matches. And they are only two points off Bury Town in third, despite having three fixtures in hand, so things are looking good for McFarlane’s men.

“As I’ve said previously, if we can stay in the top three at Christmas time then we are in a real good position to push on after that unless something drastic happens,” added McFarlane.

“With the games we have in hand I would expect us to be in the top three come that period, unless we can’t play them. That could be the case I guess with the weather because we’ve been lucky so far.”

Tobi Joseph was the star of the show on Saturday as Urchins got back to winning ways. He scored twice against Dereham, to make it 14 for the season, with Dave Collis adding the other.

McFarlane admitted the goalless first half will not live long in the memory, but he was pleased with the character of his team.

“It was a grey day and a grey game during the first 45 minutes,” added the Hornchurch boss.

“There wasn’t a lot of noise on and off the pitch and the match just needed a spark. At half time we were in control without being threatening, if that makes sense.

“But we upped it after the break and got the goals to win quite comfortably in the end.”

Joseph scored the opener in the 54th minute and doubled his tally three minutes later.

Collis scored Urchins’ third 10 minutes from time, but it was two-goal Joseph who stole the show. McFarlane said: “For his first he wins the initial header on the halfway line from Alex Bentley’s throw.

“George Purcell flicks it on again and then David Knight plays it round the corner and Tobi is there, he gets in and finishes it off really well and it really is his desire that gets him his goals.”

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