Our away day misery continued as Bognor ran out 2-0 winners, writes James Barrett-Sterling.
Bognor Regis Town 2 - 0 Carshalton Athletic
Bostik Premier League
Saturday 5th January 2019
Last five results: LLLWL
Current league position: 12th (with 31 points)
Our 'Man of the Match': Billy Bishop
Harry Ottaway came back in to spearhead the attack and Paris Hamilton-Downes returned to skipper the side. Jordan Cheadle was back from suspension and named among the substitutes.
The opening nine minutes of this one began quietly but with the home side showing more attacking intent - and Town went on to open the scoring on 10 minutes.
A bit of head tennis in our half ended with Mason Walsh getting on the ball, jinking his way into the box and coolly slotting low past Billy Bishop.
The Robins' first glimpse of goal came five minutes later after winning a corner - the delivery was cleared and Taofiq Olomowewe's pot shot from 20 yards didn't really test keeper Dan Lincoln.
Then, a minute later, Ottaway helped on a Peter Adeniyi cross that Tommy Bradford met from an offside position. Lincoln wasn't to know however and the keeper did well to tip the header over his crossbar.
A throw-in provided a route to Carshalton's next chance but, after Kalvin Morath-Gibbs had dug out a cross, Ola Sogbanmu couldn't generate any real power on his shot inside the area.
But then a big chance for the Robins to equalise on 27 minutes - Olomowewe picked out a run by Bradford who broke beyond the Bognor defence and was onside. It was on his left side but he kept his composure to eventually fire a low shot across Lincoln. The ball was on target but the keeper dove and got the merest fingertip to deflect the ball millimetres wide of the post.
There was a claim for handball by the Carshalton players as Bognor only half-cleared the resultant corner, but nothing was given and Christie Pattisson put a 20 yard follow-up off target.
It was a frustratingly fantastic save and spurred Bognor back onto the attack - Walsh beat Bishop but not the far corner with a curled shot from 20 yards, while a short corner routine ended up with Jimmy Muitt trying his luck from outside the box. The ball bounced up savagely in front of Bishop but the keeper reacted brilliantly to palm the ball over the bar.
Town's top scorer had an even better chance on 38 minutes as Harvey Whyte did well to get to the edge of the Carshalton box, but the unmarked Muitt skewed the pass over first-time from about 15 yards.
HALF-TIME: 1 - 0
The first chance of the second-half fell to Carshalton - Ottaway and Pattisson combined to get forward and the latter crashed a half volley that was deflected out for a corner which was defended away.
Bishop was forced into another good save as left back Joe Tomlinson ventured forward before cutting onto his right and trying his luck from 20 yards.
But Bognor did score again on 55 minutes as we lost possession midway inside our own half, Jimmy Wild took the ball to the edge of the area before finding Muitt whom crashed home an angled drive for his 19th of the season.
Cheadle came on for Paris Hamilton-Downes shortly after that but Bognor won a free kick on the left-hand angle of Carshalton's box. Tommy Widdrington struck in a shot that saw the ball really move and Bishop did well to parry it onto his far post. The ball went for a corner and Walsh had two bites to get a shot away, the second of which was claimed by Bishop.
Carshalton perhaps should've reduced the arrears on 63 minutes as Jacob Mendy's pace got him down the left. His cross was blocked but Bradford got on it before finding Adeniyi. The player/boss waltzed his way round a couple of opponents before going past the last man between him and the goal, but he proceeded to then blaze a shot over from 15 yards.
Bognor responded with a low free kick into the Robins area which we failed to clear. Tomlinson span and cracked off a half volley that whistled just over the crossbar.
Carshalton made a double substitution and threw on attackers Michael Dixon and Jerson dos Santos for the last 12 minutes, but it was Jacob Mendy that worked Lincoln next with a low 20 yard effort that the keeper easily gathered.
And the home keeper maintained his clean sheet in added time by punching away a firm Cheadle free kick as Carshalton fell to defeat in their first game of the new year.
Match highlights (with commentary) and post-match reaction coming soon via robins.tv
We face either Salisbury or Braintree Town in the FA Trophy second round on Saturday 12th January (kick-off 3pm).
Carshalton Athletic: Bishop; Morath-Gibbs (dos Santos - 78), Dudley, Olomowewe, Mendy; Adeniyi, Hamilton-Downes (c) (Cheadle - 57), Sogbanmu; Pattisson, Ottaway (Dixon - 78), Bradford
Unused subs: Ohman, Swaby
Bognor Regis Town: Lincoln, McCormick, Tomlinson, Tuck, Field, Charman (Scutt - 66), Whyte, Widdrington, Wild, Muitt, Walsh (Heath - 78)
Unused sub: Osborne
Goals: Walsh (10), Muitt (55)
Booked: Widdrington, McCormick