MELFORD SIMPSON struck five times as Shoreham Football Club cruised into the preliminary round of the FA Cup with a thumping win at home to St Francis Rangers on Saturday.
Simpson now has seven goals in just three games this season, after he netted a first-half hat-trick and then twice more early in the second half before he went off on the hour mark against Rangers.
The striker also had an effort ruled out for offside and Mussels boss Kane Louis feels Simpson can reach the 30-goal mark this season.
Louis said: “We need Melford to keep this form going. He’s a pain for defenders as he will not only score goals but he’ll set them up as well.
“As long as his confidence is up, he’ll score goals in this league and most other leagues as well. I haven’t set him a goal target as I just want him to go out there and get goals. But if he stays fit, he should be getting around 30 goals and he knows that.”
Simpson had an early effort ruled out for offside and Mussels also missed other openings, before they went ahead on 16 minutes when Simpson headed home a Toby House corner.
Three minutes later, Simpson headed home Terrell Miller’s cross, before he completed his hat-trick on 40 minutes, with another header from a House corner.
Simpson made it 4-0 when he raced on to a long kick forward from Nic Taylor to volley home on 49 minutes, before Kai Bichard rounded the Rangers keeper to score a minute later.
Miller had an effort ruled out for offside, before Simpson headed home a Craig Stevens’ cross on 56 minutes.
Calvin Petrie made it 7-0 when he headed home another corner from House on 63 minutes, before Clifford Newby-Harris completed the scoring six minutes from time when the ball broke to him in the box and he fired home low into the bottom corner.
Mussels picked up £1,500 prize money for the win and will host Combined Counties League Horley Town, who beat Wick & Barnham 7-0, in the next round on August 29.
SHOREHAM: Taylor; Larin, Edwards, Petrie, Stevens; Miller, Fleming, Izuchukwu, House; Bichard, Simpson. Subs: Goldson (Simpson 60), Newby-Harris (House 65), Bell (Izuchukwu 70), Allan, Measor.
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