Two red cards and two penalties, one missed, one scored, were the main talking points of a game that saw Worthing get back to winning ways while Tonbridge will see it a as a game that slipped away from them.
The first period saw the Angels largely in the ascendancy and they were good value for their 1-0 lead at the break. Alex Read for the home side thought he’d scored in the 4th minute but the effort was ruled out for offside. On 14 minutes Joe Turner should have put Tonbridge ahead but Worthing goalkeeper Kleton Pentreou did well to smother the shot.
Worthing’s James Crane brought down Jared Small in the penalty area in the 25th minute but Pentreou saved well from Read’s spot kick. Eventually the Angels did take the lead following a flowing move involving Tom Beere and Michael West with Joe Turner applying the finishing touch in the 43rd minute.
The game was turned on its head in the 50th minute when James Folkes was adjudged to have handled in the area and was given a straight red. It was a controversial decision to say the least. Did he handle the ball in the first place and if he did was a clear goal scoring opportunity denied? That said Crane took responsibility, stepped up to take the penalty and beat Jonathan Henly with a low shot to his left to put the Rebels on level terms.
With a man advantage the visitors had much more of the play although created relatively few chances. Eventually however an opportunity came to substitute Callum Healy in the 78th minute and he put Worthing ahead with a glancing header which proved to be the winner.
Late on, hero Healy turned villain when he was sent off for a second bookable offence and with equal players the Angels rallied but couldn’t break through the Worthing defence.
Whilst it’s true that you can’t always legislate for officials’ decisions, the fact is that with their dominance in the first half playing against a Worthing side short of some senior players, Angels could and should have made the game a lot safer by the break; their lack of goal scoring ability just now is costing them dear.
Afterwards, Angels Boss, Steve McKimm said: “Of course I’m very frustrated with today’s result, but I cannot fault my players for their display. We have been victim of decisions that have gone against us and there is only one person responsible for that.”