Conor Mansfield walks around Whiteley’s goalie to score his second goal. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

The forward is one of many players who joined Meon this summer from former Mid-Solent League rivals FC Strawberry.

After scoring twice the week before in an HPL Cup victory over Kingsclere, Mansfield fared better as Meon handed his compatriots in South East Division 1 a 5-1 victory at Cockleshell Gardens.

Left-back Fred Hoare, another former Strawberry regular, struck twice, including a second-half shot from around 30 yards that screamed into the top corner. “It was amazing,” said boss Bic Singh.

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Conor Mansfield celebrates his second goal. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

Meon took a 4-0 halftime lead with Mansfield completing a hat-trick after Hoare broke the deadlock.

For Whiteley, it was the heaviest loss in their three-year history.

“It was only the third league game we lost,” said boss Steve Thomas.

“I’m not too worried – we had eight players absent, including our goalkeepers and our captain.

Conor Mansfield (yellow) skillfully hits the keeper for his first goal against Whiteley Wanderers. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

“I’ve never experienced anything like it – for the first time, I thought maybe I should put my boots back on when I was 55!

“The opponents had a good game. They were quick, they closed us quickly. But I can’t wait to give them a real game at Meadowside.

Missing Wanderers were goaltender Anton Blake, signed in pre-season from Wessex Leaguers Hythe & Dibden, and formerly Eastleigh skipper Aaron Lobb.

Regular center-backs Joe Besci and Frankie Rudland and University of Portsmouth skipper Alex Fitzgerald were also absent.

Freddie Hoare celebrates his first game against Whiteley Wanderers. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

Joe McClean pocketed Whiteley’s consolation as they trailed 5-0.

Meon is welcoming former Mid-Solent League Harvest rivals this weekend. Adam Beckett is sidelined with injury and Frankie Scott, another former Strawberry player, has doubts about his fitness.

“It’s going to be a bit of a battle,” Singh said of the renewed rivalry with Harvest. “It will be difficult back and forth.

Krzysick Krysztofowicz continued his goal-laden start until 2021/22 as Harvest suffered their season opener from the Hampshire Premier League Division 1 South East.

Meon Milton (yellow) versus Whiteley Wanderers. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

The Polish striker scored NINE times in QK Southampton’s 13-0 win over Netley – on the same day Harvest beat Michelmersh and Timsbury 11-0.

Krysztofowicz then scored twice in a 5-3 HPL Cup win over elite Liphook before adding another brace in a 4-3 win over Harvest at Front Lawn.

“He’s too good for this level, he should play in the Wessex League,” said Steve Harris, Harvest boss.

Krysztofowicz wasn’t even in QK’s first team last season; instead, he plundered 19 goals in 16 outings of the West Division of the Hampshire combination for their reserves.

“We weren’t in the rhythm,” Harris summed up. “If they have a main player, you can’t let him play, and we did.

“The only good thing – and you have to take the good points – is that we can’t play so badly anymore. It was the worst I’ve seen us play in a while.

Freddie Hoare, right, against Whiteley Wanderers. Photo: Chris Moorhouse

Callum Harman, Harry Leigh and one other responded for Harvest, who received a late penalty from the referee – only for the QK linesman to raise his flag.

“It’s frustrating,” regrets Harris. “But that’s what you get at that level of the game. That’s what it is – you have to go through those levels to get to where you want to be.”

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