Chertsey Edge 9-Goal Thriller with Late Strike
by Tom Wellman
An 89th minute Eddie Smith goal knocked Guildford City out of the Surrey Senior Cup as Chertsey Town celebrated victory in an epic encounter at the Spectrum, winning 5-4 in the end. City only have themselves to blame for conceding five at home and missing two penalties during the furious affair.
Smith completed his hat-trick late on with a lovely finish past Antony Hall, much to the distress of the home team who had more than matched their higher division opponents.
To be fair neither defence produced anything of the sort of standard that would have Ray Wilkins raving, but it certainly proved to be an entertaining contest and one that could have tilted either way.
Guildford kicked off the scoring in the 7th minute; Jack Guilford capitalising on a mistake by the Chertsey backline to drill home.
Soon after though it was all square as Phill Page slotted in following impressive build up play from the visitors, and they soon took the lead for the first time when Tom O’Regan rifled in a left footed effort from the edge of the area after racing onto a long ball from defence. In between those goals however, Guildford won themselves a penalty after a trip on Moody but Austin Gacheru could only send the spot kick low and wide.
City did go into half time level though thanks to Ben Rayner’s strike as a free kick into the Chertsey box caused havoc, only to fall to the thankful Rayner. Guildford then took the lead for the second and final time in the match as Simon Cooper’s spectacular free-kick found the top corner from 20 yards on 50 minutes.
Within seconds however Chertsey had equalised; Smith grabbing the first of his three, heading in a precise cross. Minutes later they went 4-3 up thanks to Smith again, finishing a low cross from namesake Miles clinically just before the hour mark.
Guildford rang the changes to try to remain in the game as Page missed a 1-on-1 opportunity prior to Debrah and Banton-Brown’s inclusions. Successfully, they paid off as a long ball into the box found the head of Dan Moody who just about reached the ball before the Chertsey ‘keeper and nodded into the empty net.
At 4-4 the game was there to be won and Guildford were given a great opportunity to seal the win as the referee awarded another penalty to the hosts. Cooper took this one but ‘keeper Lee Pearce redeemed himself by pulling off a terrific save down to his right.
Cruelly, Smith then snatched the win from under City’s noses as the tie dwindled towards extra time with a well taken finish which proved to be the winner. 5-4 it ended in a topsy-turvy encounter which Guildford City will feel they should have won had they taken their chances.
Antony Hall, Elvis Defreitas, Ben Rayner, Simon Cooper [capt], Tony Chaplin, Corey Holder, Dan Moody, Will Heavey (Ben Camara 89), Jack Guilford (Lance Banton-Brown 70), Austin Gacheru, Luke Bradnick (Martin Debrah 62).
Unused substitutes: Joel Hughes, Michael Hall
Cautioned: Jack Guilford
Referee: V. Penfold