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Quick-fire double puts Clarets in control before sub Simpson strikes soon after coming on

Deeping Rangers recorded a fifth successive United Counties League victory to maintain their place among the Premier Division's leading lights after a comfortable 3-0 home success over Kirby Muxloe on Saturday.

A quick-fire double in the first half from Jonny Lockie and Scott Mooney put the Clarets in control of the contest before Michael Simpson sealed their success after the break.

Since suffering a 4-1 home defeat to Pinchbeck towards the end of December, Michael Goode's charges have scored 13 goals in their five-match league winning streak while conceding just three after keeping four successive Premier Division clean sheets.

They have also secured progress in the FA Vase and Lincolnshire Senior Trophy this month but, despite closing the gap on second-placed Rugby to three points with two games in hand after Saturday's victory, the Clarets chief isn't looking too far ahead.

Deeping Rangers FC - second half v Kirby Muxloe Goal (6622356)
Deeping Rangers FC - second half v Kirby Muxloe Goal (6622356)

Goode said: "We had to get the three points on Saturday and we certainly didn't under-estimate Kirby Muxloe.

"They were 0-0 with league leaders Daventry until half-time last week before they got overpowered in the second half.

"That was basically what we needed to do. We had to stay patient, stay in the game and I wanted to get into a position where I could get all three substitutes on for a 20, 25 or 30 minutes which we did.

"We're not really carrying any knocks, but this month has been really hectic for us so it's just giving some players the opportunity to have a little bit less time on the pitch.

"We played some good stuff and I thought their goalkeeper made two or three really good saves so I'm really happy with how things are going at the moment.

"It's another three points and that's what we've got to keep doing and then we'll see what is happening around us.

"All we are trying to do at the moment is take care of ourselves. Saturday's game was the most important and now the most important one is at Harborough on Tuesday night.

"The FA Vase game is still a very long way in the future. We've got two very important league games before that.

"Harborough, on a 3G pitch, are a tricky side to play against and then we've got to go to Wellingborough who are another tricky side.

"We'll prepare really well for the next couple of weeks because January has been a really busy month for us.

"We've beaten Eastwood, Leicester Nirvana, Eynesbury and Holbeach which were all really tough games.

"We've come through that. We've played properly to win again on Saturday so we're now back into those sort of games where we have to really physically grind the games out."

Deeping Rangers FC - second half v Kirby Muxloe Goal (6622364)
Deeping Rangers FC - second half v Kirby Muxloe Goal (6622364)

It was actually visiting Kirby, who started the game second-from-bottom of the Premier Division table, who created the best opening of the early exchanges.

After a tidy turn and shot from Deeping's Dan Jarvis had gone narrowly over, a long clearance from Kirby goalkeeper Ashley Marsden set Andre Williams free but, with just Lewis Elsom to beat, he was denied by a smart stop from the Clarets custodian.

Luke Hunnings headed a good chance wide for Rangers from close range before Jarvis sent another inviting ball into the Kirby box only for it to elude any home players.

The deadlock was eventually broken midway through the first half after Marsden had made the first of a number of spectacular saves when he turned Henry Dunn's powerful strike over the crossbar.

From the resultant corner, Lockie pounced on the loose ball to fire home from close range and give Deeping a lead which was doubled three minutes later.

Schiavi rattled the underside of the crossbar with vicious free-kick with the alert Mooney on hand to tap home the rebound.

Deeping were now in full flow and James Merriman made a vital last-ditch block to deny Lockie who was set to fire home before Marsden produced more excellent reactions to keep out a well-struck effort from Dunn as the Clarets finished the half in control.

They continued to create the majority of the openings in the second half as Mooney headed just wide after a fine home move involving Dan Flack.

Marsden then produced a stunning stop to deny another fierce Schiavi free-kick after Jarvis had been felled on the edge of the area by Adam Clarke.

Simpson then came on to replace Mooney and within a couple of minutes of being on the pitch he had headed home Deeping's third goal.

Marsden had made another magnificent save to deny a thunderous Schiavi strike but, from the resultant corner, Simpson soared highest to head in.

Deeping still went in search of more goals, only to be thwarted by the inspired Marsden who produced a top-drawer stop to keep out a Lockie strike after a tremendous run and shot while substitute Matt Carter saw an effort that was destined for the bottom corner clawed away by the Kirby custodian to keep the final tally at three.

Rangers: Elsom, Flack, Andersen, Burton-Jones, Hunnings, Jarvis (Carter), Dunn (Brown), Coulson, Mooney (Simpson), Schiavi, Lockie. Not used: Marsden, Bircham.

Kirby: Marsden, Clarke (Lowe), Merriman, Waters, Finnemore, Davis, Williams, T Love, Tinsley (Ajigbolamu), A Love, Morrall (Gaydon).

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