Corinthian-Casuals claimed their second league win in a week when Gabriel Odunaike’s 78th minute strike was enough to earn all three points against a previously unbeaten AFC Hornchurch.

The result leaves James Bracken’s side looking up the table rather than down.

“If we win our game in hand, we’re three points off the playoff places,” said Bracken following the win.

“If you’d have asked me if I’d take that at the start of the season, most people would snap your hand off.”

“That’s four wins out of the last five against Bostik Premier opposition in all competitions. We’ve defeated an unbeaten side here today and thoroughly deserved it.”

Casuals started cautiously against a side who’d yet to lose a match in the league, but soon grew into the game. The best chance fell early on to Warren Mfula after the ball fell to him around 12 yards out. Callum Chafer saved well to keep the scores level.

The second half saw Casuals with the wind behind their backs. They looked to capitalise on this early. Jordan Clarke let fly a 25 yard curling effort which whistled past the stanchion and clipped the stand roof.

Pressure started to tell on Hornchurch and finally, on 78 minutes, Jack Tucker played a neat pass to Mu Maan who fooled his marker. A covering defender couldn’t clear and Maan squared the ball for Odunaike to tap in from six yards.

Casuals never looked threatened in the remaining time and Comins was only forced to make one clearance. Bracken’s side had their second win and second clean sheet in four days.

“It was great today,” continued Bracken. “Non-League Day. Big crowd. There was a real buzz about the place. When the final whistle went, and you get that spine-tingling feeling… you can’t buy that. That’s what we play for. We play for those moments. We’ve had plenty of those in the past. We had a great day today and it’s up to us to continue to earn more of them.

“The boys done the right things today. We’re improving all the time and hopefully the last few games will give them the belief that they can perform to the required standard. Even when things aren’t going so well, we can look back at matches like today and draw from it.

“We’re not going to get carried away. It’s a tight league, right down to the bottom. But we’ve shown through recent performances that when we get it right, and when the boys stick to what they’re supposed to do, we’re more than capable of picking up points.

“Looking back, when we played Brightlingsea Regent for over an hour with ten men, we still should have won that match. That was two points dropped.

“The Kingstonian game should’ve been at least a point. That would’ve put us three points better off in total. Take that into consideration and we’re two points outside the playoffs with a game in hand. It shows we could easily be in a better position, but we have to be happy.”

Casuals host Croydon in the London Senior Cup on Tuesday before travelling to Bishop Stortford in the league on Saturday.