Gosport bid for long-awaited home comforts

Justin Bennett returned to form with two goals against Chesham
Justin Bennett returned to form with two goals against Chesham
Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Habibur Rahman (170972-31)

Bradbury hails his steely Hawks

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Gosport Borough are gunning for a first home league win as they take on St Albans City at Privett Park tonight (7.45pm).

There have been few home comforts for Borough, who have suffered three defeats in their four home games so far in the Southern League premier division.

Their only point came in a goalless draw against Bashley on bank holiday Monday – but assistant manager Mick Catlin is not too downhearted.

‘We have to improve our home results,’ he said.

‘Alhough our results have not been good, our performances haven’t been that bad.

‘We have just been punished for individual errors but hard work on the training ground has seen us start to cut those out.

‘A lot of goals were being conceded at set-pieces and we have managed to stop that.

‘It is time to convert our excellent away form into our home games.’

Borough showed signs they are ready to move forward at the weekend with a fine 3-0 win at third-placed Chesham, who went into the match boasting an unbeaten home record.

Two goals from Justin Bennett and a Dan Woodward effort saw Gosport cruise to the win courtesy of an impressive second-half performance.

Catlin is convinced that, if Borough can continue in the same vein, then they can be successful against St Albans City.

‘The win on Saturday should give the players a huge boost to their confidence and self-belief,’ said Catlin.

‘In the first half, we were under the cosh for spells but some resolute defending kept Chesham out.

‘We also rode our luck a little when they missed a penalty.

‘In the second half, we dominated the game, with Jamie Brown controlling the middle of the park.

‘It moved us up to 11th in the table and back-to-back wins will make a huge difference.

‘Then we can start looking up rather than over our shoulders.

‘We are expecting another severe test, though, from St Albans because they are fifth and have experienced players like Barry Hayles and Micah Hyde in their squad.’

Borough striker Bennett could hold the key for the hosts as he has done on so many occasions in the past.

The prolific goalscorer announced his return to form with two goals at Chesham and Catlin believes it was just what the striker needed.

‘Justin is a confidence player and those goals hopefully should see him get on a run,’ said Catlin.

Fellow striker Steffan Gaisie is still out injured but midfielder Dean Stow is back in the squad for the first time since breaking his wrist in pre-season.

Gosport Borough: Ashmore, Jones, Molyneux, Poate, Martin, Smith, Brown, King, Woodward, Bennett, Cook, Wilde, May, Norton, Stow.