WORTHING United Football Club tasted victory for the first time in 10 matches on Tuesday in their crucial bottom-of-the-table clash with AFC Uckfield.
County League Division 1 basement-side United closed the gap on their second-from-bottom opponents to just a point in their battle for survival.
The two sides will now battle it out to avoid finishing bottom of the pile. United have played a game more than their fellow strugglers, but the clubs still have to play each other again a week on Saturday. Before that, United host Ringmer this weekend and have the visit of Horsham YMCA to Lyons Farm on Tuesday.
After a scoreless first half, United took the lead four minutes after the break through an Aaron Farrier goal, while a cracking tackle from Tom Kirwan denied the visitors a certain equaliser.
A Jamal Shamba brace then made the points safe for United, despite Chris Gould netting a late penalty for AFC Uckfield.
United assistant manager Martyn Rea said: “It was a question of who got the first goal and, thankfully, we got it. From there, we played with a lot more quality. Everyone settled down and there was only ever one winner.
“It takes us to within a point and AFC Uckfield still have Lancing to play on Thursday night, which is their game in hand.
“It would have been nice to have been saved on our own merit, but that’s not the case now, but with the amount of work everyone at the club has put it, let’s not finish bottom.
“Ground gradings may save us but we have plans in place for next season and it will be hard to attract players if we are in Division 1 and struggling again.
“I think we need to drop down and boost ourselves and get the feel-good factor back again.”