We’ve not only new opponents to face this season but new competitions as tonight we make our bow in the Peter Bentley League Cup. Renamed from the John O’Hara Cup in honour of the man who dedicated almost forty years to the Sussex County League and FA, prior to his death in 2013, the competition has only been in existence since 1974 and is open only to teams in the top two flights of the Sussex County League, rendering Horsham ineligible for entry until this season.
Whilst the competition may be new to us there is, though, a familiarity about both our opposition and the venue as we prepare to welcome Pagham to Goring’s Mead for what will be our sixth home match in eight outings. The Lions should provide a stern test for Dom Di Paola’s side, unbeaten as they are in all competitions with six wins and a draw and, in Dan Simmonds, boast one of the division’s leading scorers. Although those to fall at Pagham’s hands include the likes of newly-promoted AFC Uckfield and Wick & Barnham, and our next FA Vase opponents Selsey, they recorded a more notable success in the FA Cup when defeating Ryman Leaguers Corinthian-Casuals 3-1 last month so are clearly a side in confident mood. Saturday’s eight goal haul at Selsey took their season’s total to an impressive twenty-six, with Simmonds claiming a dozen of them including a hat-trick in that tie with the Casuals, so it promises to be an interesting tussle between the Lions’ potent attack and Horsham’s miserly defence.
Entry to this match is FREE to season ticket holders, with general admission reduced to just £5 for adults. Kick-off is 7.30pm