Little Common face tough trip to table-toppers

Action from the reverse fixture between Little Common and Chichester City. Picture by Simon Newstead
Action from the reverse fixture between Little Common and Chichester City. Picture by Simon Newstead

Little Common Football Club is preparing to take on table-topping opposition.

The Commoners will make the long trip to Chichester City in the Southern Combination League Premier Division today (Saturday).

Common player-manager Russell Eldridge said: “It’s another game of football, it’s 90 minutes, it’s 11 against 11 and on any given day anything can happen.

See also: * Little Common beaten by five-star Eastbourne Town
* Little Common fightback not quite enough
* Little Common end four-month winless run

“The important thing is to take something out of the game. Hopefully that will be a point or three, if not the performance we put in is vitally important.

“It’s a tough fixture and we’ve had a tough run, but we have to believe and we have to try our best, otherwise there’s no point in going.

“We know that game’s not going to determine whether we stay in this league or not. A result would be fantastic, but the other games after this will decide our future as such.”

With seven games to go, Common are fourth-from-bottom of the table - two points above the two relegation places.

Chichester are 10 points clear at the top of the table having won more matches than anybody else in the division, lost the least, scored the most goals and conceded the fewest.

Common will travel west off the back of a 5-1 defeat away to high-riding Eastbourne Town last weekend.

Eldridge said: “For the first time in a while I was a bit disappointed with the way that we performed, not for the whole game, but for certain periods. I was disappointed at the end of the game in terms of some of the goals we conceded towards the end.

“The game could’ve been different, but ultimately we didn’t help ourselves with the two goals we conceded at the end of the first half, which made the task much harder.

“The first half plan was to give ourselves a chance by staying in the game, but we conceded a soft (first) goal - a needless free kick and a free header - and then to give away another goal on the stroke of half time was extremely disappointing.

“We started the second half really well, got back into the game and then you could hear they were concerned they were quite open and we were exploiting the spaces.

“Probably the turning point was the third (Eastbourne) goal. It was at a stage where we were well in the game and I think that third goal took the wind out of our sails. The fourth and fifth were the first time that we let the game get beyond us for a long, long time.”

Southern Combination League Premier Division bottom six (played-points): 15 Langney Wanderers 31-30 (-27 goal difference), 16 Loxwood 31-27 (-27), 17 LITTLE COMMON 31-23 (-29), 18 Shoreham 31-21 (-42), 19 Arundel 31-21 (-44), 20 Eastbourne United AFC 30-18 (-45).

Little Common’s remaining fixtures: March 16 Chichester City (a), March 23 Lancing (h), March 30 Loxwood (a), April 6 Pagham (h), April 20 AFC Uckfield Town (h), April 22 Langney Wanderers (a), April 27 Crawley Down Gatwick (h).