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Luke Steele scores the winning goal as Deeping Rangers defeat Sleaford Town in the United Counties League Premier Division North



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Manager Daniel French praised an outstanding defensive display from his Deeping Rangers side as they made it back-to-back wins in the United Counties League Premier Division North on Monday.

Luke Steele's early strike secured the victory against Sleaford Town at the Haydon Whitham Stadium as Rangers followed up their one-goal win against Pinchbeck in their last outing with victory by a similar margin.

They then had to repel a response from an in-form Sleaford side but their back four of Dan Flack, Jack Bloodworth, David Burton-Jones and the returning Luke Hunnings plus goalkeeper Dan Swan stood strong to keep the visitors at bay.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070378)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070378)

French said: "We were outstanding defensively.

"It was one of our best defensive displays that I have seen for a while as a back five.

"We were really good and, especially when we go in front, we are excellent at soaking up pressure and dealing with what other teams throw at us.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070407)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070407)

"We matched them, not just on the first ball, but on the second as well where we reacted which was very pleasing.

"It was a really satisfying result because we hadn't played since December 18 so you are always a little bit wary of Christmas and New Year and being heavy-legged, but we stood up to it really well and physically and fitness-wise we were really good.

"Defensively, whether it be attacking the ball or organisation or being composed when we had possession, it was a really good display."

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070410)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070410)

It had taken Rangers just nine minutes to break the deadlock as Flack's corner picked out Hunnings whose header was saved by Garry Doran with Steele reacting first to fire home the rebound from close range.

Sleaford then went on enjoy the larger share of the possession in the first period but they struggled to create clear-cut openings.

Joe Smith saw an effort blocked and then had a shot cleared off the line in the second period before they pushed more men forward late on in search of an equaliser.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070413)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070413)

That allowed Rangers to counter and Ta'i Williams came close to doubling the lead late on only to be denied by a fine save from Doran as the Clarets saw out the game to leapfrog their visitors in the league table.

They now travel to Skegness Town on Saturday looking to avenge a 3-1 home defeat when the sides met in November.

French added: "We have got some tough games in January, but we massively under-performed against Skegness last time.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070416)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070416)

"We will be a different outfit when we go there this time though because we've got the confidence of two clean sheets and two wins."

Clarets: Swan, Flack, Bloodworth, Burton-Jones, Hunnings, Walton, Williams, Steele (Ellis), Bird (Pancho), Wilson, Showler (De Sousa).

Attendance: 262.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070419)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070419)

Bourne's scheduled home game with Harrowby United on Monday was postponed due to the recent Covid-19 outbreak in the Wakes' camp.

They are due to return to action this weekend when making the trip to face Radford in Division One of the United Counties League.

Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070422)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070422)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070425)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070425)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070428)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070428)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070433)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070433)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070436)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070436)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070439)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070439)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070381)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070381)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070386)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070386)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070389)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070389)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070392)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070392)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070395)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070395)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070398)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070398)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070401)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070401)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070404)
Deeping Rangers were 1-0 winners against Sleaford Town. Photo: Alan Walters (54070404)


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