We chalked up our first win of pre-season as a late flurry of goals saw us beat Westfield 5-1, writes James Barrett-Sterling.
Team news: With Peter Adeniyi and Keith Boanas still casting an eye over potential new players, there was a lot of new faces on the pitch, like former Robin Jordan Clarke, but the likes of Danny Dudley, Kalvin Morath-Gibbs, Jordan Cheadle, Levi Philips and Rio Davidson-Phipps started the game.
Kick-off The match began fairly evenly but our visitors carved out the first real chance on nine minutes – a 25 yard free kick hit our defensive wall but the loose ball was floated towards the back stick. Westfield winger TJ drilled a low angled effort on target but Santiago Lopez Dovale parried the ball out.
Dovale was called into action again two minutes later and he was equal to Jason’s rising left-footed drive.
Our first real attack came on the quarter hour as Dudley released Davidson-Phipps down the right. The full back got in front of Adam Bellmaine and squeezed a square ball into the feet of striker Mike Dixon, but the forward didn’t catch his shot and it rolled harmlessly off target.
But the number nine only had to wait five minutes for his next chance and this time he made no mistake – Dixon took down Cheadle’s corner kick, spun and crashed home a shot from six yards.
The tempo of the game rose after that and both defences had to be on their toes as the game flowed until we doubled our lead on 36 minutes.
We worked the ball down the left until Olu Lapite rolled it into the path of Clarke whom, as the Westfield defence backed off, unleashed a 25 yard strike across keeper Gary Ross and inside the top corner.
We almost added a third just before the break as Ayo Olukoga burst clean onto a through ball but Ross did well to rush out and block the flicked effort.
HALF-TIME: 2 – 0
Westfield hit back straight after the restart as a poor pass by Dovale was intercepted on the edge of our area and Jason nipped in to score.
And they almost conjured an equaliser on 51 minutes as TJ got in on a one-two but this time Dovale was alert to block low at the winger’s feet.
There was the usual raft of substitutions as the game wore on, with us introducing Michael Aziaya, Jacob Mendy and Dapo Abitogun on 68 minutes.
But the game turned into a goalfest during the last 15 minutes with one man in particular in the spotlight.
Firstly, on 77 minutes, Dixon burst through on goal. Ross could only parry the initial angled effort but our striker headed the looping ball back into the unguarded net, despite the attentions of a defender challenging him.
Then, two minutes later, Dixon broke the Westfield offside trap and strode forward before coolly beating Ross from just inside the area.
And, before anyone could sit back and admire the hat-trick, Dixon was at it again on 82 minutes as Philips showed great pace down the right and the striker guided his low cross home to make it 5-1.
Next up: We host Phoenix FC on Wednesday 18th July before AFC Wimbledon arrive on Saturday 21st July.
Carshalton Athletic: Dovale; Davidson-Phipps, Dudley (c) (Abitogun – 68), Morath-Gibbs, Cheadle (Mendy – 68); Philips, Olukoga (Aziaya – 68), Clarke, Nosike, Lapite; Dixon Unused subs: Oshilaja, Adeniyi Goals: Dixon (20, 77, 79, 82), Clarke (36) Assists: Cheadle, Lapite, Philips
Westfield starting XI: Ross, Boa, Bellmaine, Abi, Steer, Wallace, Jason, Reanu, Watson, Andrews (c), TJ Goal: Jason (47)