Sutton Common Rovers (0) 1, Guildford City (0) 0
by Jack and Barry Underwood
Guildford City returned to Sutton just 15 days after a league visit for yet another cup away day. On this occasion the encounter was an EL Records Premier Cup match, and once again City came away on the wrong end of a single goal winning margin. Guildford impressed in the first period and especially opened the match brightly and in the opening moments a fine Aaron Smith-Joseph cross was met by Rory Cornelius who couldn’t get a clean shot off on goal. Matt York’s header from Jake Gill’s free-kick was comfortably saved and Guildford were impressing. Rory Cornelius and Aaron Smith-Joseph were looking especially dangerous on the flanks and on the quarter hour Smith-Joseph again crossed a challenging ball across the box just eluding the flying Nathaniel Williams. In turn SCR looked dangerous on the break and Jack Collins was forced to clear his lines after a fast break on the left. Late in the half shots were exchanged by SCR’s Francois Gabbidon which went wide, and City’s Andy Ottley whose long range effort was saved comfortably.
SCR looked a stronger side in the second period but it was Andy Ottley who came close first by firing in two long range efforts; the first of which went wide, and the latter was saved by Luke Barrett. As the half progressed SCR got a hold on midfield and increasingly the home side threatened the visitor’s goal. On the hour Guildford City were awarded a spot kick when Nathaniel Williams went down in a challenge with home keeper Barrett. However after consultation with his assistant, referee Steve Scott correctly overturned his decision; Barrett having actually made a fine save. Minutes later the deadlock was broken when Francois Gabbidon broke and cut in from the left to fire past Liam Beach. The same player had a chance to score a second following a defensive error but Liam Beach was equal to it and saved well. With 15 minutes remaining SCR keeper Luke Barrett was substituted following a heavy challenge from Danny Akinwande which earned him a yellow card. With full-back Aaron Bogle donning the goalkeeper gloves City might have felt that there was an opportunity. On 81 minutes Andy Ottley looked to test the replacement custodian but his long range effort zipped just past the post. Both sides had chances in the final moments but it was in the end a cup victory for SCR. Post-match SCR goalkeeper Luke Barrett went to hospital suffering from concussion, and everyone at Guildford City was subsequently pleased to hear of his release with nothing more than a severe headache.
Team: Liam Beach, Jordan Taylor, Connor Gales, Jake Gill, Matt York, Jack Collins (Alex McWilliam), Rory Cornelius (Athan Smith-Joseph), Dan Akinwande, Nathaniel Williams, Andy Ottley, Aaron Smith-Joseph (Edgar Morais). Unused subs: Toby Johnson, Stuart Searle.
Referee: Steve Scott