Sidley United crowned champions after 5-1 victory

Sidley United celebrate after winning the East Sussex Football League Premier Division title
Sidley United celebrate after winning the East Sussex Football League Premier Division title

Sidley United clinched the East Sussex Football League Premier Division title with a convincing 5-1 victory at home to Robertsbridge United.

The Blues came into their final league match of the season knowing that a point would be enough, but they were determined to grab the game by the scruff of the neck from the start.

After missing a good early chance, they took the lead on 18 minutes as Charlie Cornford’s long throw was headed home by Danny Ellis.

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Sidley looked to be comfortable when Sean Baldwin added a second goal on 31 minutes, converting Lee Carey’s pinpoint cross.

But after Zack McEniry was sin-binned for dissent - the first time a Sidley player has received the new punishment - the resulting free kick was headed home by the unmarked Ben Thorpe to bring Robertsbridge back into the game.

Sidley could have started to feel the nerves, but just two minutes into the second half, Cornford notched his first goal for the club to again put daylight between the sides.

Sidley’s fourth goal arrived on 71 minutes, McEniry scoring with a back header over the Robertsbridge goalkeeper at a corner.

With confidence high and the result assured, Cornford powered home his second and Sidley’s fifth goal on 79 minutes.

Sidley saw the game out to preserve their 100 percent home record in the league this season and the celebrations could truly begin.

After two defeats in their first three league matches, Sidley won 14 of their subsequent 15 to overhaul Bexhill Town and Battle Baptists in a fascinating title tussle.

Sidley: Langley-Fineing, Walker, Scrace (Day), McEniry, Copley, Elliott-Noye (Funnell), Wells, Ellis, Cornford (Elphick), Carey, Baldwin.

A magnificent campaign could yet conclude with another trophy as Sidley face Sedlescombe Rangers in the ESFL Premier Travel Chauffeurs Challenge Cup final at The Pilot Field, home of Hastings United FC, on Saturday May 4.