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Herne Bay boss Ben Smith on his goalkeeper's 'surreal' goal, a couple of new faces and their derby against Whitstable Town

Manager Ben Smith has spoken about Herne Bay goalkeeper Jordan Perrin’s “surreal” goal from inside his own half in their victory at Three Bridges.

A long clearance from Perrin remarkably beat his opposite number as three first-half efforts saw them claim a much-needed 3-2 success in Isthmian South East last weekend.

Herne Bay manager Ben Smith. Picture: Chris Davey
Herne Bay manager Ben Smith. Picture: Chris Davey

Captain Laurence Harvey and Kieron Campbell struck, too, as Smith’s side responded after back-to-back losses.

“I don’t think I have seen something like that live,” said Smith.

“I remember Tim Howard, when he was at Everton, scored a long-range one. But there was no wind - I think the (Three Bridges) keeper just got his positioning wrong.

“It looks quite surreal in real time and you think ‘Did that just happen?’ but we will take it anyway.

“The most important thing when you have a setback is to not read too much into it and move forward as quickly as possible. We managed to do that at the weekend.

“I know most people would expect us to beat Three Bridges but they have drawn with Ramsgate and Ashford this season, so they have taken points off good teams.”

Smith was delighted with the win after preparations were far from ideal, with players testing positive for Covid.

Forward Harry Lynch returned to take a place on the bench but former Hemel Hempstead defender Jacques Kpohomouh couldn’t get registered in time.

With Aaron Millbank and Adem Ramadan both testing positive, Herne Bay decided to remain outside and not use Three Bridges’ facilities.

Smith explained: “Most of our players changed in the cars, but I had a couple changing in the stands.

"We kept everyone outside after testing before the game.

“Then the linesman came over and said ‘Both teams have to walk out together’ which wasn’t happening. He said ‘We are going to have to report you then’.

“I just don’t get it sometimes, especially when I think we shouldn’t be playing anyway.

"I think they should stop it for a little while.”

An under-23s player had been due to be with Bay’s first-team for the match but tested positive as well, while the club’s physio had to isolate.

Smith admitted: “There was loads of concern because those lads trained last Tuesday and, since then, they have tested positive.”

Bay’s next scheduled match is a big one - their derby at home to Whitstable on Monday.

Smith said: “We have got a great record in the derby since I have been at the club.

"Whitstable have picked up recently but, as I have said before, form goes out the window in these games.

“I think the Kent clubs have it harder in terms of getting out of the league.

"For me, Whitstable are not really our rivals at the minute.

“There’s local bragging rights at stake, but our rivals are the five teams that are above us.”

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