Chipstead recorded a league double over Horsham, and ended The Hornet’s six game unbeaten run as they thrashed Dom Di Paola’s sorry, and soggy looking team at High Road.
In awful conditions in which the rain refused to relent, Horsham struggled to gain a foothold of any sort during the ninety minutes as they put in a poor performance that meant they missed the chance to leapfrog their hosts, instead slipping down a place to seventeenth, with Ramsgate overtaking The Hornets thanks to their 3-0 victory at home to Ashford United.
It took just two minutes for Chipstead to have the first meaningful attack on Horsham’s goal, with Steve Metcalf heading off the line to deny the hosts an early goal, yet Chipstead’s second attack yielded a goal as Horsham’s habit of conceding early on in matches came back to haunt them. It was almost inevitable that it would be scored by former Horsham man Alan Tait, as Chipstead cut the ball back to him on the edge of the box and he side-footed to put The Chips in front.
Horsham would go closest on twenty-one minutes, as a move around Chipstead’s final third resulted in a pass to Liam MacDevitt, but with the speedy forward unable to break through the well-drilled Chips defence, he could only fire over the bar as he smacked it first time.
Horsham would soon find themselves with a mountain to climb with not even half-an-hour on the clock. What should have been a relatively comfortable catch for Daly saw the Horsham goalkeeper scramble as he dropped the ball and attempted to recover, only to bring down Sam Bell in the penalty area. With few complaints over the decision, the resulting spot kick was booted into the roof off the net by Dylan Cascoe.
Horsham attempted to respond through George Landais, but the striker found little joy, despite cutting inside to trick his marker to create some space, and could only shoot at Michael Sibley’s near side as the Chips goalkeeper saved comfortably.
Chipstead went close to taking a three goal advantage in with them at the break, as Daly almost got caught straying from his goalmouth, but Bell’s curling shot was held as the Horsham shot-stopped got back to cover with the Chips hitman trying to take advantage of the empty net.
H/T: Chipstead 2 Horsham 0
With movement and creativity severely lacking from Horsham, Di Paola immediately withdrew Scott Harris for Dean Bown at the start of the second half, yet the visitors still refused to spark into life with the hosts content to sit back and coast the remainder of the match out, however Chipstead continued to make light work of the appalling conditions as they occasionally knocked on the door, with a deep cross from Lean Lalor-Dell causing problems for Daly, who appeared hesitant to come for the ball, as Cascoe headed over under close scrutiny from Joe Shelley.
Daly’s confidence would have certainly not been helped later on, when with just over an hour played, he was left to take the ball out of his net for a third time. With Chipstead finding it all too easy to play the ball around Horsham’s half, substitute Jeremy Boakye decided to try his luck from twenty-five yards, and he found the net with a sweet curling strike that left Daly rooted.
It could have got worse for as Horsham threatened to implode, but for poor finishing from Tait, who could not convert after Cascoe played the ball to him following a marauding run down the wing.
With Horsham at sixes and sevens, a double substitution to inject youthful enthusiasm gave The Hornets supporters hope, when Toby House scored a consolation goal two minutes after coming on, when he managed to take advantage of a momentary lapse of concentration in Chipstead’s defence, rushing in at the back post to convert George Landais’ deflected shot.
But still Horsham’s problems stemmed from the back, although it took an excellent tackle from Shelley to deny Bell restoring Chipstead’s three goal cushion as he slid in to concede a corner.
An energetic run on the wing by Ollie Twum then forced Landais into making a sliding challenge that he missed, allowing the midfielder the time and space to drag back in the box to Cascoe, but Horsham escaped as the shot was squirmed just wide.
Dean Bown was then denied the opportunity to set up an interesting finale, when his powerful shot was beaten away from Michael Sibley, and it proved the impetus the hosts required to get goal number four.
In a torrid evening for Horsham fans, the ease in which Chipstead scored the final goal of the night summed up the entire ninety minutes as a simple pass was allowed to cross the width of the pitch with Horsham’s defence all over the place, Cascoe collected in acres of space, strode forward ten yards and calmly rolled past Daly to finally put Horsham out of their misery.
Reporter: Matt Dale