Blankety-blank, now Sarnies need to find mojo
Evo-Stik Div 1 Central Egham Tn 0 St Ives Tn 0 A RUNAWAY train in recent seasons in terms of goalscoring, Egham have not so much hit the buffers as crashed into them at a rate of knots.
They haven’t scored since November 18, when striker Dan Read notched his side’s second goal in a 2-1 Red Insure Cup win at Godalming Town. That strike, ignoring messy bits of injury time, but including the 30 minutes of extra time as Egham lost to Molesey in the Surrey Senior Cup, came 430 minutes of playing time ago.
It was the last time Luke Muldowney’s men found the back of an opposition net, and, with this goalless draw against Cambridgeshire visitors, meant that for the first time in living memory the Runnymede Stadium had hosted, after the 0-0 with Hanwell Town, back-to-back goalless draws.
The glass-half-full bit of this is that Egham have not let in a goal at home for two games, but the glass-halfempty side is that Egham have lost a cutting edge that saw then put five past Barton Rovers, fours past Slough Town and Northwood, and four triples.
Egham gave a start to Seb Castello, who came on and looked decent at Bedworth United and recovered from a shaky start at Molesey. In this game his was a calm and assured performance in a defence that saw Muldowney with his boots on again, marshalling Louis Chandler-Joseph and the ever dependable Danny Williamson.
St Ives, with four wins and a draw in their past six games, were clearly the side more in-form, but were still below the Sarnies in the table.
They took the early initiative with Kieran Fitzgerald forcing two good saves from home keeper Jamie Norris, and, were it not for some brilliant covering by the excellent Wilson Gondwe, Fitzgerald would have had another chance to test Norris.
Egham were not creating chances, only Reis Stanislaus heading a Joe Chandiram corner over the bar and Josh Andrew unable to capitalise on confusion in the St Ives defence having opportunities after Brendan Matthew lobbed a presentable chance wide.
On Saturday, Egham travel to North Greenford United, where they won for the first time last season and who have struggled since their elevation as CCL Premier champions in 2009-10.
“We need to find our attacking mojo again,” said Egham’s press officer Mark Ferguson. “They lost 0-4 to Rugby and sit in 21st place so we must still be favourites for the win against a team with three points from their last 27.”
One plus for Egham was the form of substitute Nassim Dukali. The former Dulwich Hamlet and Carshalton Athletic man has pace and trickery and looks like a useful addition to the squad. Ferguson added: “He played well against Molesey and showed up very well here.”