TOP GUNS U’S BLITZ MISFIRING SPITFIRES
SUTTON UNITED finished the first half of the National League season on top of the table after a win against Eastleigh that was more convincing that the scoreline suggests.
Goals in each half from Tom Bolarinwa and Tommy Wright sealed victory for the U’s, and but for veteran keeper Graham Stack in keeping out efforts from Kieran Cadogan and a Nicky Bailey free-kick, the margin would have won by a lot more.
“We were beaten by a better side,” conceded Spitfires boss Richard Hill. “Sutton are an excellent outfit and although we tried to change things in the second half and improved a bit, it was still really only a whimper and overall we weren’t very good.”
Sutton dominated the opening half and after Bolarinwa had sent a 25-yard shot just over, he opened the scoring on 13 minutes when he dispossessed defender Fraser Shaw before slotting the ball past Stack.
Recalled for the suspended Ross Flitney, the visiting keeper kept his side in the game by denying Cadogan and Bailey, while Ross Lafayette thundered a volley just over the bar.
Cadogan might have doubled the lead after the break with a fierce shot that just cleared the bar, but Sutton did eventually wrap things up eight minutes from time when a long Jamie Butler clearance was headed on by Lafayette and substitute Wright coolly lobbed Stack into the net.
Eastleigh still had time to register their one and only shot on target – Mark Yeates’ effort tipped over by Butler – but with a solid defensive performance marshalled by the excellent Simon Walton, there was no further threat.
U’s boss Paul Doswell beamed: “In the first half we were excellent and but for Graham Stack we could have won by a lot more. The players have been magnificent in the first half of the season but it is still a very tight league and there is a lot of football still to be played.”
ONE-UP! Tom Bolarinwa shoots under the diving Graham Stack to give Sutton the lead