|Competition:||Isthmian League Premier Division|
|Date:||Saturday 13 August 2016|
Hendon's celebration of playing their first Ryman League game at their new Silver Jubilee Park home was rudely disrupted by Worthing on Saturday. The Rebels showed little mercy in running out thoroughly deserved 3-0 winners on a glorious afternoon.
A crowd of 321 - significantly larger than would have been at any of the "home" grounds used by the Greens since leaving Claremont Road - watched Worthing take control in the first half and finish the job with a trio of goals in the final half-hour.
Only two players made their actual debut for the Greens - resplendent in their electric lime green shirts - Arthur Lee and Spencer McCall, but Berkley Laurencin, Dale Binns and Karl Oliyide began another spell playing for Gary McCann.
For the first 10 minutes, things looked good for Hendon as they passed the ball around well and created half-openings, which foundered when Matt Axell or Gary Elphick intervened.
The first danger sign came after 17 minutes when a diagonal pass released Omar Bugiel. He had only Laurencin to beat, but dragged his shot a foot wide of the far post.
Three minutes later, Hendon had an escaped when Reis Stainslaus hit the underside of the crossbar with a powerful strike. There was no appeal that the ball had crossed the goalline, but it should have been rendered a moot argument as Bugiel met the rebound. He, however, lifted a free header over the crossbar from five yards out.
The Hendon defence was frequently at full-stretch as the passing game began to misfire and players retreated into their shells. None of Mahrez Bettache, Sam Murphy or McCall were able to send Oliyide or Kezie Ibe into space and the better moments came from wide, where Chris Seeby and Binns asked the questions.
It was Binns who had Hendon's first effort on goal. It came in the 37th minute, when he went on a run. He cut inside Will Hendon and fired a cross-shot which Rikki Banks was able to save without too much difficulty.
Just before the break, Stanislaus ran between Casey Maclaren and Lee and received a neat pass from Kane Wills to leave himself with only Laurencin to beat. The goalkeeper was quickly off his line and, after spreading himself well, did enough to take the ball off the strikerÃÂ¢ÃÂÃÂs feet.
Going up the hill in the second half, Hendon did look a little more dangerous going forward. McCall and Murphy linked up and the latter's shot was saved at full stretch by Banks.
But the danger at the other end remained there. With 61 minutes on the clock, Hendon made a burst down the right side, cut inside Seeby and then beat Luke Tingey. His low cross to the near post was met by Stanislaus, who made no mistake from close range.
Things got worse for the Greens just three minutes later. This time the danger was from the other wing and it was Harvey Sparks who made the run. It was also his shot, with his weaker right foot, which arrowed beyond Laurencin into the bottom corner.
Hendon were then unlucky, probably for the only time in the game. Oliyide fired a shot which was deflected out to the left side of the penalty area where Binns was waiting.
His strike would certainly have beaten the out-of-position Banks, but Hendon threw himself in front of the ball and it crashed off the crossbar. The rebound favoured the Rebels who were able to clear.
If Hendon had got back into the game, they might, with a quarter of the match remaining, been able to salvage something. Niko Muir and Finnbar Robins took over from Ibe and Bettache, but almost immediately the game was put beyond Hendon's reach.
Again it was a simple attack down the flank. The ball played low into the danger area and there was Stanislaus to apply the coup de grace. It was no more than Worthing deserved.
Andre Da Costa replaced McCall in the final 10 minutes, but his only shot at goal was easy meat for Banks. In fact, it was Worthing who continued to look the more likely to score.
All in all, it was a very unhappy afternoon for the Hendon faithful.
|14||Niko Muir||for 9 , 71|
|15||Finbarr Robins||for 6 , 71|
|17||Andre Da Costa||for 4 , 83|
|12||Steve Metcalf||for 7 , 88|
|14||Brandon O'Neil||for 10 , 76|
|15||Ross Edwards||for 11 , 90|