Football: Rusthall’s revenge over Cray Valley is thwarted

Bissett leads Rusthall to top of table with valiant defence and super goal
Rusthall FC moves up in the league

RUSTHALL came close to avenging their 9-1 defeat to Cray Valley earlier in the season but a missed penalty and then conceding a late goal left them empty handed again.

The narrow defeat was a credit to their spirited display but it leaves them rooted to the bottom of Southern Counties East League Division One.

The visitors were determined there would be no repeat of that humiliating loss so they set up in a defensive formation and tried to frustrate Cray’s skilful and experienced team.

Although Cray had all the possession, they were mainly restricted to passing the ball across the front of the Rusthall box.

In the first half Cray did create two chances but Aaron McGuigan, the Rusthall goalkeeper who had only signed for the club that morning, was equal to both one-on-one situations and had an excellent game.

Rusthall were creating few chances but were hard-working and gave the Cray players no time on the ball in key areas.

Cray used their height and weight superiority to good advantage but the score remained goalless at half-time.

The second half saw Rusthall create more attacking play and force Andy Walker, the Cray goalkeeper, into action.

Then in the 77th minute, on a rare Rusthall attack, Charlie Clover got behind the Cray defence and was brought down for a penalty. But Walker saved the spot kick, thwarting Rusthall’s hopes of an unlikely victory.

With five minutes remaining, Cray’s Chris Edwards ran across the Rusthall back line and fired a shot at goal which McGuigan could only parry. The ball fell kindly to Gavin Tomlin, who slotted it into the net.

In midweek the Rustics went down 5-1 at Punjab United with Arun Suman scoring a hat-trick in the first half, Moses Sunday scoring for the visitors.

They now face AFC Croydon on Saturday [February 16, kick-off 3pm].

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