Tony Chaplin rescued a point for Guildford City with an 89th minute equaliser away at Wembley. City fell behind early on but goals from Austin Gacheru and Jack Guilford put City ahead. Wembley equalised and struck again shortly before half time as the impressive Daryl Atkins completed his hat-trick. An industrious second half performance saw City get back on track but a point was only salvaged when Chaplin curled his shot home in the 89th minute.
With just 35 seconds on the clock, Wembley goalkeeper Amaegbe clattered into an oncoming Austin Gacheru on the very edge of the penalty area, picking up the game’s only booking in the process. Nothing came of the free kick however, and within minutes Wembley were ahead. Captain Ian Bates threaded through Daryl Atkins who beat Jamie Thoroughgood and shot past Antony Hall. The lead was short lived – Tony Chaplin intercepting a pass and playing in Jack Guilford. Wembley struggled to clear their lines, and Chris Korten painfully blocked Anthony Bridgeman’s shot, only for Gacheru to slot the ball in to Amaegbe’s far post from 18 yards. Minutes later it got better for the visitors when Jack Guilford found himself completely unmarked as he headed City in front. The home side shaded the first half chances, and they smashed a shot against the bar from long distance. An equaliser came in the 23rd minute, Atkins once again finishing from a tight angle. The Wembley striker completed his hat-trick shortly before the break, beating the offside trap, rounding Hall and rolling the ball home despite a lunge from Corey Holder. Ben Rayner nearly levelled soon afterwards, his shot from close range cannoning back off the post. Antony Hall produced a moment of magic to deny Wembley a fourth goal, saving first from Atkins, then twice from Dean Linton at point blank range.
The second half saw a much improved City performance, and some slick passing manoeuvres. Early on in the half, Ben Rayner played in Dan Moody whose left footed shot did not trouble Amaegbe. Dan Moody turned provider after a surging run, offering a low cross that begged to be buried by Ben Rayner, but the City midfielder’s shot went wide. Wembley offered little in the second half, content to keep the ball but always at risk of a City equaliser. Ben Camara’s long range effort was tipped away and the visitors must have been wondering where an equaliser would come from. In the 89th minute, Tony Chaplin turned Wembley substitute Peter Elvin and unleashed a curling shot from 25 yards that nestled in the bottom corner to salvage a point for City.
Antony Hall, Elvis Defreitas, Ben Rayner [capt], Tony Chaplin, Jamie Thoroughgood, Corey Holder, Dan Moody, Ben Camara (Will Heavey 89), Jack Guilford (Martin Debrah 79), Austin Gacheru, Anthony Bridgeman (Lance Banton-Brown 59).
Unused substitutes: James Treherne, Michael Hall