Saturday 3rd November
Southern Combination Football League
Crawley Down Gatwick 3 Little Common 3
Crawley Down rescued a point when rallying from 3-1 down to draw 3-3 with Little Common at the Haven on Saturday in the SCFL Premier Division. However, there is no doubt that the Anvils manager, James Day, and his backroom team will see it as two points dropped rather than one gained after an afternoon of frustration.
The visitors started brightly but once the home side got into their stride, they almost completely dominated the first half hour and really should have been two to the good at that stage. After 35 minutes Little Common took the lead in decidedly controversial circumstances. A through ball found Sam Ellis who looked suspiciously offside. Home captain, Blair Cooney, seemed to win the ball cleanly. Ellis fell over and the referee from a distance awarded a penalty which Russell Eldridge despatched.
Driven on by the injustice Crawley Down responded within a minute. A superb flick by Oli Leslie played in Michael Spence who finished sublimely. What happened next was truly sensational. Wes Tate put the ball on the centre spot for the kick off and scored one of the most amazing goals ever seen at the Haven when he lobbed Andy Greaves in the Anvils goal from the half way line to put Little Common 2-1 up, a lead they held on to until the break.
Crawley Down pushed for an equaliser at the start of the second half and Little Common were happy to sit back and look for a break. That break duly came after 56 minutes when a loose pass straight to the evergreen Wes Tate saw him finish brilliantly across the keeper to put Little Common 3-1 ahead.
To their credit the Anvils refused to yield and they surged forward with almost complete dominance. Credit also has to go to the management team for some astute and timely substitutions. The pressure was rewarded after 83 minutes when the referee awarded what seemed like a soft penalty for a foul on Nick Sullivan. He duly converted to get Crawley Down right back into the contest. An equaliser seemed inevitable and it came after 89 minutes when Oli Leslie raced clear and finished superbly across the keeper into the far corner.
Little Common will feel hard done by that they did not get three points from a battling performance and particularly having scored a wonder goal and having been 3-1 up with just over 30 minutes remaining. However over 90 minutes it would have been a compete travesty if the home side had finished empty handed. Football truly is a funny old game.
Crawley Down Gatwick: Andy Greaves, Russell Malton, Lee Thomas (Sam Cane), Sonny Barton, Blair Cooney, Marc Pelling, Josh Brown (Dan Sullivan), Michael Belli (Josh Martin), Nick Sullivan, Michael Spence. Unused substitutes: Lewis Croal, Connor Baston
MOM: Mike Spence
Updated 11:08 - 5 Nov 2018 by Michael Martin