CITY were unlucky not to win this game – putting their opponents under pressure for much of the match and forging a number of chances. Guildford opened the scoring – Carnegie notching his first goal in 7 starts with a screamer from the edge of the area. City’s lead lasted just two minutes however as Horley caught their defence napping, allowing Adam Pullen to score with a strike of some quality. The second half saw both sides go close but with City asking more of the questions. They just could not finish off any of the chances.
A few of our committee were out for this match. Mr Pegman was on a weekend away with his other half and Paul M could not make it because apparently it was his birthday! Meanwhile Matt Brown was again missing (asleep) so I took responsibility for the gate alongside Doug. We had a decent enough attendance by this season’s standards, including a few more students which was good to see. The omens weren’t good for a win for either side however with Horley already having drawn 7 games this season and Guildford without a league win in 4 – so I hoped they would want to come back!
Neither side looked likely to score from the opening exchanges and the first chance of any note fell to City in the 13th minute – a corner being whipped in by Elgar but no player being there to knock it home at the far post. Five minutes later Elgar again curled in a shot which Jack Turner could not quite get his head to. Horley were starting to liven up however and could have taken the lead in the 21st minute when Hall was forced to come out to dispossess a forward and missed. The Clarets player could only weakly shoot, allowing Tommy Tydeman to nip in and collect the ball. He then passed to Hall and we all expected our goalkeeper to go on a blistering run down the wing. Luckily he just hoofed the ball down the pitch to safety. City were immediately on the attack and a fabulous through ball from Adesina found Jack Turner but with no end product. Guildford went closer moments later though, winning a corner which was drilled in to the far post. Jamie King knocked the ball back across goal and Gabriel Adesina, sliding in, sent the ball just wide.
The visitors responded and Hall pulled off a good save at close range on the half hour mark. The ball looped in the air and was cleared by Tom Penson – calls for handball being waved away by the referee. Back came City – Simon Cooper firing a powerful but misdirected freekick into the mitts of the Clarets stopper James Wastell in the 34th minute. A minute later it got better – Guildford again carved the Horley defence apart and Adesina fired a shot on goal which was blocked and rebounded to Carnegie. Harrison, made some space and then curled a sublime shot over the keeper, off the bar and into the net. Our elation lasted all of 2 minutes unfortunately. Horley went on the attack down the Guildford right and the ball was laid off for Adam Pullen who tore into the box and unleashed a strike to match ours, the ball flying unstoppably into the far bottom corner of the net. Both sides seemed to wake up after this – Jamie King firing weakly into the keeper’s mitts from an Elgar cross in the 40th minute while Horley’s counter-attack straight after led to Hall hurting himself in a bid to clear the ball. The home side had the last decent chance – a corner being drilled in, cleared and Carnegie shooting wide.
After a reasonably uneventful halftime – well aside from Matt and I managing to persuade a new City supporter to come and join the Sweeney in the stands – the players trooped out for the second half. Horley began well and two minutes in won a freekick – the ball ping-ponging around the Guildford penalty area before being headed wide. The home side recovered, however, and started to create some good chances. In the 53rd minute Adesina tore into the box and beat his man on the byline before unleashing a ferocious shot from close range which Wastell just managed to push wide. Moments later Danny Guscott, the Clarets defender, received a ball in the face and there was a long break in play while he was treated and then substituted. The gap seemed to suit the visitors and they went extremely close in the 62nd minute – George Smith beating the offside trap and firing just wide when clean through on goal.
The home side upped their game and began to create good chances of their own. Harrison Carnegie, after a period on the bench in previous games seemed rejuvenated and was at the centre of a lot of the moves. He should have done better in the 67th minute, however, after receiving another great Elgar cross but he got the ball caught under his feet. A corner followed for the visitors which was easily dealt with and then City went on the attack again – a freekick flying into the mitts of Wastell and Cory Knight heading over after Graham Tydeman had run onto an exquisite long ball and crossed from the byline. The final 10 minutes saw chances for both sides but it was Guildford who should arguably have grabbed the winner. Jamie King sent a header wide from a freekick and on the stroke of 90 minutes Danny Elgar was sent clear, his lay-off for King only resulted in the ball being kicked wide. The visitors had the final chance, winning a freekick near the corner flag which did not trouble City.
GUILDFORD CITY: A. Hall; T. Tydeman; T. Penson; S. Cooper; J. Thoroughgood; J. King; J. Turner (C. Knight, 68); B. Rayner; G. Adesina (G. Tydeman, 77); H. Carnegie; D. Elgar
Subs not used: L. Bradnick; A. Bridgeman
Booked: T. Tydeman; J. Thoroughgood
HORLEY TOWN: J. Wastell; L. Forsdick; D. Medhurst; A. Jupp; D. Guscott (H. Williams, 59); J. Eldred; A. Pullen; C. Smith; G. Smith; T. Melvin; L. Brown-Ford
Subs: M. Death; D. Roffey
Booked: A. Pullen
Referee: M. Carmichael