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The wait is over as Purcell and Beckles help Hornchurch to win at VCD Athletic

PUBLISHED: 21:47 09 September 2014 | UPDATED: 21:50 09 September 2014

George Purcell will return from his six-game ban tonight. Pic: Gavin Ellis/TGSPHOTO

George Purcell will return from his six-game ban tonight. 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

Ryman Premier: VCD Athletic 0 AFC Hornchurch 2

A goal in either half from George Purcell and Omar Beckles helped Hornchurch picked up their elusive first Ryman Premier win of the season at VCD Athletic.

McFarlane kept faith with the side which lost 2-0 at home to Margate on Saturday, but new signing Leon McKenzie was on the bench.

It was a bright start from the visitors and Purcell was unlucky not to open his account with eight minutes on the clock as he found space 25 yards out and thundered a strike against the underside of the crossbar, and the hosts scrambled it away.

You had the feeling then that it might be another one of those frustrating days in front of goal, but if you continue to create chances you are eventually going to find away through.

Another Purcell shot was deflected behind for a corner, before the striker did put the visitors in front with their first goal in five games.

The former Ebbsfleet United man won the free-kick around 25 yards from goal and his low fiercely struck free-kick found its way past the wall and into the bottom corner.

It was no more than Hornchurch or Purcell deserved. The hosts were limited to shots from distance as the Urchins dominated, with Karl Dent firing over from 30 yards.

Chris Bourne was playing well down the left and he combined with Purcell and Bentley, before forcing home goalkeeper Nick Blue into a fine save.

It was an action-packed end to the half though as first Bentley conceded possession and only a block from Beckles denied former Urchin Leigh Bremner a shot on goal.

Dent fired straight at Mott from a quickly-taken free-kick before Purcell fashioned another chance which Blue did well to hold as the visitors took the lead at half time.

Tobi Joseph certainly kept persevering, chasing almost everything and he was presented with a great chance to put the visitors 2-0 up after Blue’s poor clearance early in the second half, only for his first touch to let him down and the home keeper was able to make amends for the error.

Hornchurch were sitting deeper and inviting pressure, but they were still creating the better chances when Bourne blazed over following Purcell’s cut back and Junior Luke soon followed suit.

But the Urchins got themselves a two-goal cushion 20 minutes from time when an inswinging corner from the left was met by the head of Beckles and he fired past Blue.

That eased the visitors enormously, while deflating the hosts.

Purcell could have wrapped it up in stoppage time when Urchins mounted a quick breakaway, before Duckworth fired VCD’s best chance of the match over the bar.

But much to the relief they secure the win, and they’ll now hope to build on this with an FA Cup win at the weekend over at home to neighbours East Thurrock United.

AFC Hornchurch: Mott, Starkey, Bentley, Beckles, Styles, Curley, Luke (Homans 83), Davis, Joseph (McKenzie 61), Purcell, Bourne (Dadson 90)

Unused substitutes: Griffin, Marshall-Katung.

Attendance: 124

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