FC CLACTON manager Tom Austin felt his side produced an attention-grabbing performance after blasting eight goals against shell-shocked Gorleston.

Jordan Lartey led the way with a hat-trick, Jordan Blackwell chipped in with two and there were also goals for Chris Ribchester, Mekhi McKenzie and Kevin Coyle in a one-sided Thurlow Nunn League contest at the Austin Arena.

It was the perfect response to the previous week's bitterly disappointing 3-0 defeat at Brantham Athletic.

"I've always felt someone would take a hiding from us," said a delighted Austin.

"I knew we had that quality and have been saying it since the start of the season. I just didn't realise it would take this long.

"It was a great feeling, though, and, to be honest, it could have been 12-0.

"Gorleston couldn't have complained if we'd hit double figures.

"We were clinical, played in the right areas and our front players grabbed the game by the scruff of the neck.

"They were hungry for goals and didn't take their foot off the gas in the second half.

"That was one of the things I said to them at the break.

"I urged them to keep going and rack up a scoreline that would make people say 'wow'.

"We took out some of the frustration of recent weeks, especially the 3-0 defeat at Brantham.

"That one was so disappointing - really tough to take - but hopefully this scoreline shows that we're back."

Clacton were five-up at half-time and it was a result that left them tenth in the premier division table.

They have no game this weekend before heading to Godmanchester Rovers on February 7 and hosting Woodbridge Town on February 10.

"We knew we had to react and put in a performance and we know we haven't been good enough in recent weeks," added Austin.

"We've played some tough teams, to be fair, and another reason is that we haven't had any continuity, in terms of team selection.

"However, this was a day when everyone produced at least a seven out of team performance. In a lot of cases, higher.

"It put smiles back on faces and, aside from the goals, it was very encouraging to keep another clean sheet - our fourth since Christmas.

"That's not bad going, especially when you consider we've had three different goalkeepers in that time."

Meanwhile, Austin says he and the first-team players will be rooting for the club's reserves in their Essex Junior Cup semi-final at Collier Row on Saturday.

n Clacton have opened their own community shop, in Rosemary Road.

It sells donated goods, hot and cold drinks and customers have the chance to exchange their football boots.

All donations are gratefully received.