Little Common denied win by late Eastbourne United equaliser

A ninetieth minute equaliser denied Little Common all three points as they had to settle for a 2-2 draw against landlords Eastbourne United on Saturday.

Sunday, 2nd February 2020, 10:19 am
Updated Sunday, 2nd February 2020, 10:20 am
Russell Eldridge
Russell Eldridge

Having not played for twenty-one days, the Commoners were able to name a full strength squad with only the unavailable Jordan Harley missing.

On a blustery afternoon, Common kicked against the wind in the first half and almost took the lead in the opening minute when Sam Ellis jinked his way into the area only to see his shot from a tight angle saved by the feet of the United keeper. In a relatively open encounter play switched from end to end with the away side having the better of the opportunities, Matt Cruttwell was on hand to push a speculative shot from the half way line to safety before another long range effort drifted wide of the far post.

United took the lead in the 16th minute when a debateable free kick on the half way line was floated into the area and following a misplaced Common header, Max Hollobone was on hand to hook the ball over Matt Cruttwell and into the net. Common began to play their way back into the contest and Sam Cruttwell saw an effort blocked and Ryan Paul was unable to get any power on a goal bound header.

The equaliser arrived in the 37th minute when player-manager Russell Eldridge rifled home a free-kick on the edge of the area following a foul on Lewis Hole.

Common began the second half in dominant fashion and spent long spells in the visitors’ half.

Ellis saw a shot hit the post before the rebound was sliced wide by a United defender and Hole had an effort which drifted wide. Common deservedly took the lead in the 57th minute when Sam Cruttwell’s long throw was headed into the path of James Hull who made no mistake with a well-executed close range header.

Hull thought he had given Common a 3-1 lead when tapping home after an Ellis effort was pushed into his path but the assistant’s flag was raised and the effort disallowed. Ellis then raced through himself but was unable to lift the ball over the advancing keeper who saved with his chest. As the half wore on, United sensed the chance of an equaliser and substitute Joe Brister was on hand to make a goal line clearance following goal mouth scramble.

With the clock ticking towards the 90th minute, the equaliser arrived when a ball into the box was unable to be dealt with by Cruttwell and Paul Rogers was on hand to head into the net. United almost snatched an unlikely winner in injury time but Cruttwell denied Charlie Ball with his feet as the United midfielder bore down on goal.

Squad: M.Cruttwell, Paul (Brister), Parsons, Ward, Alexander, Eldridge, Moynes (Mirian-Batchelor), S.Cruttwell, Hole, Hull, Ellis (Curran).