'We were dominant with the ball and without it' - Crawley Town assistant manager Lee Bradbury on friendly win over Horley Town

Assistant manager Lee Bradbury admitted he was disappointed by Crawley Town's first half display against Horley Town but felt that in the second half they were brighter and 'dominated'.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 10:05 am
Updated Monday, 12th July 2021, 10:36 am

Sam Matthews, meanwhile, had an excellent second half display as he scored and assisted, and said “It’s nice to get a few goals."

Crawley went down to a third-minute goal as Horley got in behind after a quick counter attack. However, Crawley grew into the game with a first half tap-in from Ashley Nadesan and an own goal from a Zaid Al-Hussaini free kick.

The tempo increased in the second half as Crawley piled on the pressure leading to Matthews’ curling effort slipping through the gloves of the Horley keeper.

The game was finished off as a trialist scored an excellent six-minute hat-trick as Crawley ended the game 6-1 victors.

Crawley struggled to get up to tempo in the first half as well as adapt to the physical nature of the opposition and this saw them trail early.

Bradbury said: “(I was a) bit disappointed with the first half. (It was a) bit of a shock for the boys early doors.

“The first group didn’t get after them enough. We made them look a good side, we let them play out from the back, they passed the ball well.

Crawley Town assistant manager Lee Bradbury. Picture by Steve Robards
Crawley Town assistant manager Lee Bradbury. Picture by Steve Robards

“We didn’t do it right, it was a close game in the first half, which it shouldn’t be.

“We were dominant with the ball and without it and all over the pitch in the second half we looked much brighter."

Crawley looked very strong going forward with six goals, four of which came in the second half.

Matthews said: “It’s nice to get a few goals. If you come into the game with the right intensity, no disrespect to these, but we should be beating them”.

Reds midfielder Sam Matthews. Picture by Harry Trump/Getty Images

A trialist completed an excellent hat-trick in the second half with some 'really good goals', and Bradbury said: “All the goals were fantastic finishes."

In the second half Crawley looked to make the most of quick one-twos especially with Matthews and Nichols. Matthew said: “All over the pitch we’re getting those partnerships.”.

The transfer window has seen little turnover in the Reds’ squad. Bradbury sees this as the club’s strength.

The Reds assistant manager said: “We’ve got a good group here and we want to try and keep them together; being demanding of each other; that’s what breeds success."

Matthews added “We had a good year last year, had some really good spells, so to keep the core of the group from last year and build on the good relationships that we had last season, I think is going to be massive going into this year.”

Looking ahead to next season Matthews picked out the return of fans: He said: “I’m really looking forward to it, it will be nice to play in front of the Crawley fans, all the boys are really looking forward to it.”

With eight pre-season friendlies left Matthews said: “(There's) plenty of time now to build up for the season; I want to play as many games as possible, I hope we have a successful year and kick on from where we were last season."