CB Hounslow United (0) 1, Guildford City (1) 2
by Barry Underwood
Guildford City got back to winning ways in determined fashion at “The Lair” on Saturday. The home side enjoyed a good amount of possession but City defended stubbornly throughout, and notably in the last ten minutes to see the game out. Guildford were missing Louie Downey (suspended), Nathaniel Williams and Ben Franklin from the side that played midweek, with Tom Booth returning from his honeymoon for just his second appearance of the season. The home side did have a good opportunity to score after just four minutes when a header cleared the crossbar from a good position. City started slowly and they came close to conceding again when Adam Roberts shot wide from a good position. Guildford gradually worked their way into the match and Tom Booth shot over the bar after good work from Robbie Mundow. After 21 minutes City edged ahead. A cross from Tom Booth was laid back across goal by Sam Marks and Kieran Campbell was on hand to hit a low shot on the turn into the corner of the net. Within a minute Hounslow might have equalised when Shakeel Morris latched onto a long pass to lob the ball over Luke Badiali but also over the crossbar. Guildford though was certainly more composed now and Jordan Gallagher had a shot saved by Kyle Cherry following a corner. Minutes before the interval the impressive Gallagher cut in from the left but his effort from an acute angle hit the side netting.
A minute into the second period City netted their second goal to give themselves some breathing space. Robbie Mundow drove into the box and had his heels clipped bringing him down. It was a straight forward penalty decision for the well-positioned referee. Up stepped Kieran Campbell who drove home his eleventh goal of the season from the spot. Minutes later a fine move on the right between Mundow and Sam Marks gave Campbell a shooting opportunity on the turn but Kyle Cherry was equal to the task. Hounslow were stunned by City’s fine start to the half, but gradually they worked themselves back in the game, having territorial advantage and winning a number of corners. With 12 minutes remaining Hounslow scored the goal their general play deserved. A cross from the right found a player free at the back post who drilled home. Predictably the home side raised their game with the backing of the home supporters. City defended valiantly but was forced into changes when Nemo Adams and Tom Booth had to leave the field within a short period of each other. The experienced Dave Burton and debutant Endrit Dobraj were straight into the action as the defence faced a relentless series of attacks. The travelling Sweeney were full of song behind the goal, encouraging the lads to that extra effort. With ten minutes remaining Guildford conceded an indirect free-kick just eight yards out from goal. With every City player on the goal line, the first line of defence did excellently to charge down the initial shot and the follow up was also blocked and cleared, although there was a hint of handball that thankfully wasn’t seen by the referee. As the clock clicked round to 90 minutes there was another almighty scramble in the City box following a corner, but again the ball was cleared. In a rare attack in stoppage time Dan Stewart hit a dipping half volley just over the crossbar. After four minutes of added time the game was brought to an end with City claiming the points after an impressive defensive display.
Team: Luke Badiali, Chris Tancock, Tom Booth (Endrit Dobraj 65), Luke Beale, Nemo Adams (David Burton 73), Dan Stewart, Robbie Mundow, Miguel Anderson, Kieran Campbell, Jordan Gallagher, Sam Marks.
Referee: Alastair Higgs