Improvement will be needed as Enfield Town travelled to Bognor Regis Town tonight seeking to end a five-game run without a win in the league after a 1-0 defeat at Carshalton Athletic on Saturday.

The Towners rarely threatened as the home side secured a victory that was more comfortable than the scoreline suggests thanks to a Michael Dixon goal shortly before the break.

Although Enfield won 2-1 at Maldon & Tiptree in the Velocity Trophy last week to end a six-game run without a victory in all competitions, they have not picked up three points since towards the end of October and have slid down to 11th in the Bostik Premier Division table ahead of the trip to ninth-placed Bognor.

Both sides spent much of Saturday’s first half weighing each other up, leading to the defences having a relatively comfortable time of it and a midfield battle as neither team was able to get the upper hand.

The visitors suffered a blow in the 25th minute when midfielder Ryan Blackman was forced off with injury, meaning Sam Youngs moved inside to partner Matt Johnson in the centre of the park and Aaron Greene went wide.

However, they created a couple of chances as Billy Bricknell fired over from the edge of the area after good work on the right from Mickey Parcell, while a Bricknell cross narrowly eluded Sam Chaney at the neat post.

But what proved to the game’s only goal arrived three minutes before the interval – and it stemmed from a Towners free-kick.

After Bricknell had been fouled on the edge of the D, Chaney struck the wall from the resultant set piece, Athletic broke quickly and Dixon was able to fire past Joe Wright from just outside the 18-yard box.

To make matters worse for the visitors, Johnson then limped off and was replaced by Sam Hatton, who was back after suspension.

The pattern of the game remained largely unchanged, but Carshalton did have a spell of pressure which saw Jordan Cheadle shoot narrowly over from distance before Kelvin Morath Gibbs volleyed straight at Wright.

The home side continued to ask what limited attacking questions there were, with Wright having to deal with a couple of shots before Remi Sutton’s attempted header back to his keeper was intercepted by Dixon, but his effort went wide.

Despite their slender advantage, Carshalton were seemingly content with their lot and apart from a 20-yard shot from substitute Liam Hope at the death that keeper Patrick Ohman saved, the hosts were rarely troubled in the closing stages.

After tonight's match, Enfield are back at the Queen Elizabeth II Stadium on Saturday when they are due to face Harlow Town.

Meanwhile, the Towners have agreed to play their Velocity Trophy quarter-final at home to Burgess Hill Town on Tuesday, January 15.