Reds continue to impress... Royals win... Deans frustrated

Pete Stiles. Picture: Keith Woodland
Pete Stiles. Picture: Keith Woodland
Horndean are aiming to make Cup progress at the second attempt

Deans must take second chance in Cup... Royals will be strong

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FAREHAM TOWN moved eight points clear of the Wessex Premier relegation zone with a 1-0 win over Whitchurch United at Cams Alders.

It continued Pete Stiles remarkable start as Reds manager.

He has extended his unbeaten run to six games.

A second half Curt Robbins penalty decided the match on Saturday.

It was such an important win with the team showing they can dig in and grind out results in difficult circumstances.

Fareham are now looking up the table as they aim to climb well clear of danger.

‘We weren’t at our best but the state of the pitch didn’t help,’ said Stiles.

‘Sometimes it is just important to dig out a win.

‘We fully deserved the three points and their goalkeeper kept them in it with three or four outstanding saves.

‘It was most pleasing that we kept a second consecutive clean sheet.

‘All the time we keep doing that we give ourselves a good chance of winning games.

‘Another win at Bashley on Tuesday night could take us up to 14th in the league.

‘That is quite something when you consider the club were bottom just after Christmas.’

The deciding goal arrived after Callum Laycock was brought down in the area.

Robbins made no mistake calmly sending the goalkeeper the wrong way with his spot-kick.

Horndean manager Michael Birmingham felt Sholing Sport’s 3-0 winning margin flattered them.

‘We played well enough to deserve something from the game,’ said Birmingham.

‘The only difference was that they were a little better than us in both boxes.

‘It wasn’t a pretty game and the pitch was a disgrace.

‘That suited their more direct style of play..

‘If Sholing are third best in the league then we are not too far off.’

Graham Rix was pleased to see AFC Portchester return to winning ways with a 2-0 win at Bournemouth.

‘We did okay on a shocking pitch,’ said Rix.

‘It was a good, solid performance and I don’t think our goalkeeper had a save to make.

‘We adapted well to the conditions.

‘It is important we don’t allow our season to just peter out.

‘The message to the players beforehand was to make sure they won it.

‘Their response was brilliant

Andy Todd grabbed both goals for the Royals.

The win that keeps them in fifth place.