Lampton opened their league campaign with a challenging game against an established premier division force in Pitshanger Dynamo. LPFC successfully beat their opponents on both occasions last season but the games were always tightly contested and the side fully appreciated that this would be a tough opening game. Lampton named a side that was without their captain Jongthep (International Clearance), Maye (Suspension) as well as Deville and New signing Hurley and Charles through holidays. Manager and defender Hillman was also ruled out after failing a late fitness test on a knee injury. New goalkeeper Amaegbe debuted, with Payne and Morris the pair tasked with guarding him. Raheman and Truelove completed the defence behind a midfield trio of Simpson, Donnelly and Jerham. The attacking lineup was completed with Mir, Winter and LePage selected. O’Connell and Barnett completed the squad.
The game was the first LPFC have played at their fantastic new home ground and the new surroundings appeared to unsettle the home side in the opening exchanges as they failed to maintain possession. Despite a lack of ball retention, and challenges with the unorthodox approach adopted by their opponents Lampton stood up well to the early pressure and succeeded in denying the visitors any clear scoring opportunities. Despite dominating possession, Pitshanger appeared unable to test Amaegbe in the Lampton goal, whilst chances were also few and far between for the hosts. LePage was denied by the Pitshanger goalkeeper as he headed an effort from close range towards goal but the half drew to a close with the scores level at 0-0.
Lampton were challenged at the interval to enjoy more possession and demonstrate an increased level of composure on the ball. The introduction of Barnett showed a promising glimpse as an early whipped ball across the Pitshanger goal tested the visitors nerves but was not met by any LPFC attackers for what would have been a simple tap in.
The breathrough came in disappointing fashion as LPFC failed to deal with a Pitshanger set piece and the ball fell to a forward who managed to slip home from close range. There was an immediate reaction from Lampton as Barnett slipped through LePage but the forward was unable to slot home what would prove to be the biggest opportunity that LPFC would have in the game. The game gradually opened up with both sides working the ball into dangerous areas before another error allowed Pitshanger to score their second and ultimately decide the result. A fantastically struck O’Connell freekick went in off the bar to give Lampton a late consolation in what proved to be a disappointing opening result of the new campaign. Lampton will be keen to put this game behind them and turn their attentions immediately towards their next game at home to South Kilburn next saturday.