Skipper Opinel marches on as three goals in 10 first-half minutes give Fleet a 3-1 win over Altrincham.
ALTRINCHAM 1-3 EBBSFLEET UNITED
A 10-minute spell midway through the first half was enough to land Fleet the three points at Moss Lane this afternoon as Liam Daish’s men recorded only their second win on the road this season, but more importantly stretched their record to just one defeat in nine games.
George Purcell settled immediately back into the midfield following his successful loan spell at Heybridge Swifts and, after the home side’s Carlos Logan had hit the bar on 27 minutes, the young Fleet star opened the scoring two minutes later when he rifled home from inside the box. And the Fleet weren’t content to sit on their lead as some four minutes later Raphael Nade scored his second in as many games as he lost his marker, rose over the Altrincham defence and superbly tucked away Stacy Long’s corner.
Things got even better for the Fleet within a further three minutes as good work from Neil Barrett found him with room to send in a cross which the home side’s defender Chris Lane – the most experienced player in the Blue Square Premier with over 300 games – could only intercept and divert into his own net for 3-0.
The Fleet had the better possession and kept their heads in the second half, although skipper Sacha Opinel gave away a penalty on 64 minutes when he went in on Colin Little and the former Crewe striker made no mistake with the resulting spot kick. Michael Bostwick saw red on 72 minutes for a somehat naive second bookable offence, having received a caution in the first-half, but it barely knocked the Fleet out of their stride as this impressive away victory lifted them to eighth in the table.
TEAM: Cronin, McPhee, Opinel, Hawkins, Goodhind, Bostwick, Barrett, Long, Purcell (Ricketts 77), Nade (Smith 90), Moore. Subs not used: Mott, Coleman, Maskell.