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Kick off 19:45 (UK)

11 July 2023 Venue Westleigh Park Attendance

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

Havant & Waterlooville
2 - 3
Sutton United
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Match Reports

Match report for Havant & Waterlooville 2 Sutton United 3

11 July 2023

Havant & Waterlooville 2 (Faal 20, Deacon 73), Sutton United 3 (Triallist C 5, Triallist E 64, Coley 81)

Sutton began the pre-season warm-up with an entertaining win at Havant, Josh Coley's header nine minutes from time finally tipping the game U's way after Havant had twice equalised goals by Sutton triallists.

U's had three triallists in the starting line-up, one at centre back and two wingers, and it took one of the wingers less than five minutes to make an impact with an incisive run before he found the overlapping Sam Hart, and continued his run to meet Hart's pull back with a firm first time finish. 

Havant came close to an immediate response as Leon Baker's shot was diverted wide by Joe Kizzi, but the home side did equalise after twenty minutes when a shot from James Roberts was diverted to Mo Faal, whose low shot on the turn found the corner of the net. Faal had another opening ten minutes later as Havant countered following a Sutton corner, but some fine defending from Hart prevented the striker getting a shot away, while former Sutton striker Callum Kealy looped a header just over from Tom Blair's cross.

Sutton finished the half strongly as the left wing triallist again threatened with a good run before having his shot blocked, with Tope Fadahunsi's follow-up effort headed away for a corner.

U's changed the entire line-up at the break, with two more triallists, one on the wing and one up front alongside Hisham Kasimu, making his long-awaited first appearance in Sutton colours, while academy player Ollie Khinda came on at right back. Again it was the winger who caught the eye early on, cutting in and hitting a fierce shot that was beaten away by Ross Worner, Havant having retained their full starting line-up. Christian N'Guessan also tested the home keeper with a low shot.

Havant made wholesale changes on the hour, with only centre backs Joe Oastler, Joe McNerney and Brendan Willson remaining, but before they could take an effect Sutton were back in front when a powerful header from Omar Sowunmi sent the attacking triallist through to slot the ball past the substitute goalkeeper.

Jack Rose was down to make one good save from a Havant triallist, but it was only a brief respite as an errant pass from Rob Milsom went straight to Roarie Deacon, with the former Sutton favourite thumping the ball past Rose from the edge of the area. Rose was now the busier keeper and made a fine save to his right to keep out McNerney's long range effort, but Sutton struck back with nine minutes to go as the wing triallist did well before freeing the overlapping Khinda, whose cross was met at the far post by Josh Coley's firm diving header (above). It proved to be the winner, although the attacking triallist had to make one more contribution at the other end when he cleared Oastler's shot off the line in the last minute.

Sutton first half: S Arnold, J Kizzi, S Hart, C Clay, B Goodliffe, Triallist A, Triallist B, T Fadahunsi, L Angol, H Beautyman, Triallist C

Sutton second half: J Rose, O Khinda, R Milsom, C Dundas, O Sowunmi, C Eastmond, C N'Guessan, Triallist D, Triallist E, H Kasimu, J Coley

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