With all the hope of the new year comes all the old weather - the faithful at the Oval had to be heavily wrapped up on Saturday for the visit of Midhurst and Easebourne, with the pitch passing an early inspection. The away fixture had resulted in United’s biggest defeat of the season, and they were determined to avoid a repetition. On an understandably heavy pitch, United made slightly the brighter start ,with Charlie Ball going close in the first 5 minutes as he broke through the box but was unable to get enough power on the shot. Broadbent had to be awake in the united goal as Midhurst threatened twice, but overall United were on top. Just 20 minutes in Charlie Ball turned and damaged a knee to join Callum Barlow, Mason Creese and George Olulode on the injury list. Bailo Camara replaced him from the bench, before being sin-binned for dissent! While United were down to 10, debutant Sabino crossed to Ed Ratcliffe, whose fierce volley was parried by the Midhurst keeper, only for Hayden Beaconsfield to smash it home on the volley. United had to wait just 5 minutes for their second, as Josh Gould was needlessly shoved into the keeper by a defender, the referee having no hesitation at all in pointing to the spot. There are few more consistent penalty takers than Max Thompson, who was celebrating his 100th appearance for the club following the on pitch presentation from former United player Jimmy Bean, and wasted no time in drilling it home to make it 2-0 at the interval. Right on half time, Sabino was booked for time wasting, to the immense frustration of the home crowd. United so very nearly made it 3 in the opening minutes of the second half as Radcliffe’s cross evaded everybody and went agonisingly past the upright. The second 45 was mainly played out in midfield, United having decided that 2 was enough, and Midhurst unable to get a telling shot away until the 70th minute, but even then it missed the goal by some margin and Broadbent was more than happy to add to his his clean sheet total. Later on Jack Barlow came off the bench to replace Gould and give a bit more height up front, and shortly before the whistle Hayden Beaconsfield went close as his long range effort grazed the crossbar. Three points then, and honour satisfied for United, as they close in on the playoff places. Next up is Tuesday evening, the 23rd, when the visitors to the Oval are United manager Anthony Storey’s old team, AFC Uckfield Town. Kickoff 7.45 as usual.