Guildford City bounced back from three cup exits in four days with a good display against Banstead Athletic. Jack Guilford’s header midway through the first half and Joel Greaves’ goal were enough to see off the relegation threatened visitors, who themselves had a number of chances in the opening minutes.
With much of the pre-match talk consisting of City’s run of three successive losses, the message was not to panic as it looked much worse than it was. But the hosts looked shaky early in this match, losing shape all too regularly and allowing Banstead to attack. Perhaps a lack of confidence showed as the visitors were unable to capitalise, coming closest with a shot that zipped across Antony Hall’s goal and only just evaded the far post to go wide.
After around twenty minutes, City finally managed to regain some composure and began to pressurise the Banstead goal. It was far from a classic match, played in front a meagre crowd – a case of ‘after the Lord Mayor’s show’ perhaps. That, or the bitingly cold Guildford air! Jack Guilford’s headed goal, a reward for another good performance, was the difference between the two sides at the break.
City found their feet quickly in the second half and controlled a Banstead side who barely registered a shot in the second half. Jaydon Gibbs looked his usual lively self once again, and was linking up well with Tommy Tydeman to produce a number of chances down the left hand side. Rayner and Camara both came close but the introduction of Dan Moody on the right wing helped to create more chances. And it was Moody who laid on the assist for Greaves after finding space, cutting into the Banstead penalty area and playing a short pass inside to Greaves. City’s top scorer took a quick shot that was blocked, but he picked himself up to try again and found the back of the net in the league for the first time in 2011.
With Banstead looking beaten, City were able to take their foot off the pedal a little. Substitute Luke Bradnick provided some fresh legs and was able to run at the Athletic defence late on, but City were unable to find a third goal.