'Feet firmly planted' despite Lancing continuing perfect league start with victory at Hassocks

Lancing have made a perfect start in the SCFL Premier Division this season. Picture by Daniel Fuller-Smith
Lancing have made a perfect start in the SCFL Premier Division this season. Picture by Daniel Fuller-Smith

Naim Rouane is refusing to get carried away despite Lancing’s perfect start in the SCFL Premier Division this season.

The Lancers came from behind to run out 2-1 winners at Hassocks on bank holiday Monday to leave them two points clear at the top of the table.

Rouane, who was named manager in the summer, has seen his side take maximum points from their opening five league matches, scoring 12 times and conceding four goals in the process.

Although proud of the way his troops have started the season, Rouane is remaining realistic. He said: “The start is as expected.

“We have had to work extremely hard to get the level of play and performances out of this side, we haven’t just chucked a team out to achieve a result.

“This has been intense, hard work and attention to detail. The boys have taken to it fantastically, I couldn’t be prouder of them.

“But we’re under no illusions how quickly things can change in football, so feet will stay firmly planted.”

But the Lancers had to do it the hard way as they came from behind to come out on top at Hassocks.

Both teams struggled to get to grips with the hot conditions, with very few chances created in the first half.

Just as Lancing were starting to pose more of a threat going forward, the home side went ahead on the hour. Yet substitute Alex Fair, who had been introduced after 56 minutes, would swing things in the visitors’ favour.

The forward was on hand to slot home following fine work from another substitute, Kane Louis, on 73 minutes.

Fair was at it again just three minutes later, heading home as Lancing completed the turnaround.

But there was to be a twist in the tale late on, with Hassocks awarded a penalty three minutes from time.

Omar Bukleb was penalised for a foul in the area and it looked as though the Lancers’ perfect start in the league would come to an end.

However goalkeeper Taylor Seymour had other ideas, pulling off a fine save to preserve Lancing’s 100 per cent start in the SCFL Premier Division. Manager Rouane reserved special praise for substitute Fair and Seymour for their displays in the win at Hassocks. He added: “It was a good win on a day that always chucks up mixed results.

“The bank holiday weekend, early kick-off and sweltering conditions were always going to make for a tricky game.

“Fair play to Hassocks, they worked hard and played direct football so I’m happy to come away with the three points when our performance level wasn’t at its best.

“Special mention to Taylor for his penalty save, he gives us that real presence in goal.

“Also to Alex Fair who was fantastic when he came on, he got two goals and changed the game. Kane Louis also added quality and guile when we needed that composure.”

Lancing host Chessington & Hook in an FA Vase first round qualifying clash on Saturday. They then travel to league rivals Newhaven in the Peter Bentley Cup second round on Tuesday.

LANCING: Seymour; Hendy, Fenton, Williamson, Bygraves, Bukleb, Juwara, Honore, Rhodes, Beresford, Finney. Subs: Fair (Honore, 56), Louis (Juwara, 56), Altendorff (Hendy, 93), Evans, Sharman.

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