It's a cruel game... Bognor dominate Corinthian Casuals - then lose to late goal
A late goal condemned Bognor to a cruel 1-0 defeat to Corinthian Casuals '“ after they had dominated most of the game and done everything but score.
Fielding two new loan recruits from Pompey, Bognor played some excellent attacking football – but the longer the game went on without them scoring, the more you sensed it might go wrong,
And so it did when Gabriel Odunaike fired a low 87th minute shot past Dan Lincoln to stun the home side and their fans, leaving no real time for a fightback and a chance to salvage a point.
It's their second league defeat of the season and their second straight loss after Saturday's FA Trophy loss at Walton Casuals.
Now the pressure is building on the players to kick-start their season again when Wingate and Finchley visit for another league game on Saturday.
The Rocks team had a new look to it following the recruitment on loan of another two promising youngsters.
Midfielder Freddie Read, 18, and attacking wideman Leon Maloney, 17, both went straight into the starting line-up. Joining them in the XI was striker Jimmy Wild, making his first start since his return to Bognor last month.
The Rocks were able to name five subs, Jimmy Muitt and Tommy Scutt among them.
Full-back Calvin Davies was the first to try his luck, with a fierce cross-shot three minutes in that keeper Daniel Bracken held.
Maloney showed his credentials early on with a quick burst down the right that ended in a cross right on Wild's head, but his attempt was straight ar the keeper.
It was a positive start by Bognor and Mason Walsh and Joe Tomlinson linked well down the left for Tomlinson to send in a low cross that was hacked clear.
Wild did well to get his head on a Harvey Whyte cross on 13 minutes but his effort was a foot or two over the bar.
Bognor were playing all the football with plenty of quick passing and moving putting Corinthian under pressure.
Doug Tuck ran on to a clearance but his 20-yard drive was off target.
Another chance fell to Wild when Maloney crossed low from the right but he didn't get enough on it. Then Walsh's good work set up a chance for Whyte which was held by the keeper.
Another Walsh cross was headed narrowly wide by Tommy Block, getting forward for a corner.
Bognor continued to dominate – Whyte's quick low ball across the face of goal following a short corner eluding everyone.
Malnoey showed skill and speed just before the half-time by streaking away down the right and setting up Wild, whose header was wide.
Casuals had not had much say in the game but showed they carried a threat when Gabriel Odunaike sped down the inside right channel and crossed for Warren Mfula, whose shot needed a deflection off a defender to keep it out.
Minutes later Mfula was denied again by a defender's block when he shot towards the bottom corner from 15 yards.
A third Casuals chance came from an error by Field but the Rocks were back to outnumber Mfula as he sniffed a goal.
There was one last chance for Casuals as Hamilton Antonio ran at the defnece and got his shot in from 25 yards – and it whistled over the bar.
Bognor started the second half on the attack but Walsh's shot was ambitious, to put it kindly, and didn't worry Bracken.
Casuals were still having one or two forays forward but seemed reluctant to commit men forward in any numbers.
The Rocks' second-half play didn't have the fluency of their first-half show with Corinthian happy to get men behind the ball and frustrate them.
Wild burst into the area on the hour mark but couldn't get a clean shot away and Bracken collected the ball.
Maloney and Davies linked in the box and the full-back was denied clear sight of goal by a defender's well-timed tackle.
Corinthian produced their best chance of the game to date on 65 minutes when Odunaike had time to shoot with only Lincoln to beat, but he sent it well wide with the defence struggling to get back.
Muitt replaced Wild with 21 minutes left.
Maan got forward for a shot from just outside the area on 70 minutes but it was high and wide, if not by much.
Casuals replaced Maxwell Oldham with Kenant Serbony and Whyte was brought off for Tommy Scutt.
Muitt made an immediate impression with a cross that Maloney met, but he sent his effort over the bar off his knee.
Muitt's free-kick on 75 minutes fell to Field but his header was blocked for a corner – and when that came in, also from Muitt, Davies flicked it across goal at the near post but no-one was there to bundle it in.
Another Casuals change saw Mfula replaced by Shaun Brown.
A free-kick 22 yards from goal offered hope after Scutt was fouled, but Tomlinson curled it well off target.
Another free-kick from a similar distance was put over the top by Muitt.
Corinthian Casuals struck their killer blow in the 87th minute, Odunaike firing low past Lincoln in a chaotic spell of play which saw Casuals appeal for a penalty for handball. It wasn't given but as play went on, Odunaike seized on the loose ball and put it away.
Rocks: Lincoln, Davies, Tomlinson, Tuck, Field, Block, Whyte, Read, Wild, Maloney, Walsh. Subs: Muitt, Scutt, McCormick, Osborne, Carroll.
Corinthian C: Bracken, Spencer, Tucker, Strange, Hannigan, Ekim, Antonio, Maan, Odunaike, Mfula, Oldham. Subs: McAllister, Smith, Serbony, Brown, Adelakun.
Ref: James Robinson