Needham Market claim three welcome points with win over bottom club
- Credit: Archant
Needham Market 3 Burgess Hill Town 1
Needham Market eased their relegation fears with a welcome 3-1 home win over Bostik Premier basement dwellers Burgess Hill at Bloomfields tonight.
Skipper Gareth Heath put the Marketmen ahead in the 35th minute, before substitutes Sam Nunn and Brendan Ocran added second-half goals to extend the Suffolk hosts’ advantage to 3-0.
Lucas Rodriguez netted a late consolation goal for Burgess Hill, but they remain rock bottom in the one relegation spot.
Needham were indebted to some fine saves from their keeper, Danny Gay, for safeguarding all three points.
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They have now risen to 15th spot, 12 points clear of tonight’s opponents.
The Hillians, despite their lowly position, actually settled the better and striker Ibrahim Forfana headed across goal and narrowly wide on 11 minutes.
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At the other end, Needham’s first chance fell to John Sands, although the front-man dragged his shot well wide from a good position.
Just before the half-hour mark, home defender Dan Morphew was booked for ploughing into Rodriguez, 25 yards from goal.
And the visitors came close to scoring from the ensuing set piece, as left-back Joe Taylor’s well-struck free-kick was superbly tipped away by keeper Gay.
Burgess Hill forced the pace at the start of the second half, peppering the target on the 55-minute mark. Pat Harding had a shot blocked and Taylor then ballooned an effort narrowly over the bar. Gay was forced into another fine save on 65 minutes, keeping out a goal-bound effort by Rodriguez as the West Sussex side sensed a way back into this game.
And the busy Gay was in the action again just six minutes later, blocking Jack Brivio’s 25-yard thunderbolt with strong hands.
However, the Marketmen weathered the storm and, against the run of play, they doubled their lead in the 77th minute via Nunn’s finish from Heath’s corner.
Five minutes later and fellow substitute Ocran netted the third with the best goal of the game, firing home from an acute angle.
Rodriguez tucked home a consolation on 85 minutes.
NEEDHAM: Gay, Dye, Sturgess, Kamanzi, K Morphew, D Morphew (sub Nunn, 50), Ingram, Heath, Griffiths (sub Harrison, 74), Sands, Simmons (sub Ocran, 66). Unused subs: Gibbs, Shorten.