BROMSGROVE Sporting moved back up to second in the Midland League Premier Division following their 2-0 victory over Long Eaton United. Robbie Bunn gave the Rouslers a 35th-minute lead before Guy Clark bagged his first goal in a Sporting shirt since signing from Stratford Town when he headed home from Sam Wills’ cross 11 minutes after half-time.
Arguably it should have been a much bigger scoreline for Paul Smith’s men as Jason Cowley and Danico Johnson missed open goals while the latter also hit the crossbar.
Nevertheless, a fourth consecutive league clean sheet was secured by Sporting and with Worcester City losing 2-1 to basement boys Shawbury United, the win moved them to within seven points of league leaders Coleshill Town, who drew 1-1 with Lye Town.
A magnificent crowd of 1,046 turned out at the Victoria Ground on Non-League Day to see Sporting pick up their eighth league win of the season, but it should have been United who went ahead inside five minutes.
Sloppy defending allowed William Coutts to find skipper Andrew Todd on the edge of the area but the United No.7 could only fire over the bar with the goal at his mercy.
Despite the slow start, the hosts eventually grew into the game with Johnson seeing a header go straight at United keeper Scott Low from Bunn’s free-kick moments later while Reece Hewitt saw a header fly over the bar at the quarter-hour mark.
Although United looked dangerous on the counter, Sporting keeper Brendon Bunn had little to do as the back four of Aaron Roberts, Josh Quaynor, Craig Jones and Clark swept up any threats with ease. And eventually, Sporting broke the deadlock ten minutes from the break.
Bunn drifted inside from the right before drilling a low shot through the legs of Low at the near post to claim his sixth goal of the season in all competitions.
After the interval, a fine save from Low then denied Bunn from grabbing his second before the United stopper had to be at his best in the 54th minute to prevent Cowley’s deflected effort from finding the bottom corner. But from the resulting corner, the Rouslers bagged their second.
After the initial cross was cleared, Wills showed great skill to burst into the area before crossing to the back post where Clark made no mistake from a couple of yards out. That goal seemed to knock the stuffing out of United and they should have been 3-0 down by the hour mark if it were not for wasteful finishing. Johnson saw an effort hacked off the line after rounding Low before the striker crossed to Cowley who nodded over with an empty goal to aim at.
Low then had to save with his legs to deny substitute John Pykett from adding the third while United’s Grant Ryan saw a header go straight at Bunn up the other end as the Nottinghamshire side struggled to find a way back into the match.
The woodwork then came to the rescue of United nine minutes from time as Pykett’s delicious cross was met by Johnson but unfortunately for the striker, his looping header cannoned off the crossbar.
That proved to be the last of the key chances as Sporting closed out another impressive victory heading into Tuesday night’s clash against Herefordshire side Westfields.
Report courtesy of Craig Gibbons (Bromsgrove Standard)