Report: Albion fly into round three at The Pilot Field

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A young Albion side overcame Hastings United 3-2 in an entertaining Sussex Senior Cup second round tie at The Pilot Field.

By James Hilsum • 19 November 2019

By Paul Hazlewood
Kacper Lopata was on target against Hastings.
  • Albion beat Hastings United 3-2 at The Pilot Field
  • Kacper Lopata, Stefan Vukoje and Bojan Radulovic on target
  • Davide Rodari and Ben Pope score for Hastings
  • The Seagulls will now face Burgess Hill Town in round three

Goals from Kacper Lopata, Stefan Vukoje and Bojan Radulovic proved to be the difference against the spirited Isthmian League South East side, who found the net through Davide Rodari and Ben Pope.

The victory means Albion face a trip to Burgess Hill Town in round three, after edging an absorbing and competitive contest on the south coast.

The game began with chances for both sides, as Vukoje got an early sight of goal before Jack Dixon forced Adam Desbois into a fine one-handed stop with a close-range header.

By Paul Hazlewood
The moment Kacper Lopata nodded in Albion's first goal.

The Seagulls broke the deadlock with 20 minutes on the clock when Lopata headed a cross from the right onto the bar, before nodding home the rebound. 

But the joy was short lived as Hastings equalised within a minute through Rodari, who latched onto Ollie Black’s long throw into the box to head past Desbois.

In a lively first half-hour, the Seagulls scored a second in the 26th minute when Vukoje twisted and turned inside the area before firing past Louis Rogers at his near post.

There was yet more goalmouth action down the other end a couple of minutes later, when goalscorer Rodari edged past Desbois and forced James Furlong into a sliding clearance, but the linesman’s flag was raised. 

By Paul Hazlewood
Stefan Vukoje scored Albion's second goal.

Hastings then had a golden opportunity to equalise when Rodari jumped up unmarked inside the area, only to see his header go wide at the far post.

It was a warning of what was to come though, as the hosts scored with 63 minutes on the clock through Pope, whose improvised back header from Lanre Azeez’s cross clipped in off the far post.

Pope nearly got his second less than a minute later only to see his shot go narrowly past the right-hand post.

By Paul Hazlewood
Bojan Radulovic was on target against Hastings.

The game was being played at a good pace and Vukoje was denied after his low shot towards the bottom right-hand corner was brilliantly pushed away by Rogers.

But Albion did get a third, courtesy of Radulovic, who brilliantly took hold of Vukoje’s through ball and rounded Rogers to slot the ball into an empty net with 76 minutes played.

There was still time for two final scares for Albion though, after Ayo Tanimowo brilliantly cleared James Pool’s effort off the line, and Desbois produced an outstanding stop to keep out Ryan Worrall’s free kick.

ALBION: Desbois; Cocoracchio, Lopata, Freestone (Clark-Eden 59); Tanimowo, Leonard (Offiah 77), Packham, Furlong; Spong; Vukoje, Radulovic.

SUBS NOT USED: McGill (GK), Turns, Dackers.


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