North Greenford United (0) 3, Guildford City (0) 1
by Barry Underwood
This wasn’t the first occasion this season where Guildford found a way to lose a game that they should really have got some reward. City, minus five players on the injury list, opened the game well and from the start Nathaniel Williams looked threatening down the left hand side. On two minutes Kieran Campbell shot from an acute angle only to see the ball zip wide of the far post. Minutes later Williams found Jordan Gallagher unmarked 10 yards from goal. It was a golden chance but Gallagher’s effort was saved by the diving Alex Partridge. City were still dominating and Robbie Mundow was allowed space to advance before unleashing a 25 yarder just wide of the post. Gradually the home side came more into the game and from their first real chance Daniel Vincent headed wide of the goal at the far post. David Burton did well defensively to prevent a shot on target at the far post, whilst later Vincent again had a chance when he blazed over the bar. Minutes before the half-time whistle good work by Nathaniel Williams gave him the chance to cross to the edge of the box where Kieran Campbell scooped a difficult chance over the bar. In stoppage time David Burton again came to Guildford’s rescue blocking a goal bound effort.
Much of the second period was disjointed, with long periods of scrappy football. City were noticeably growing frustrated but they came mighty close to taking the lead when Kieran Campbell unleashed a thunderbolt of an effort from 25 yards that Partridge saved acrobatically. This seemed to spur the visitors and Dan Stewart was inches away from beating Partridge to a through ball. A minute later it looked as if City had scored when David Opuku’s pass gave Darryl Siaw the chance to lob the keeper and it seemed for all the world the ball was heading for the net. Frustratingly for City the ball hit the crossbar and the rebound was cleared. Football can be a cruel game and within a further minute Greenford had taken the lead. Luke Badiali failed to hold a shot from outside the box and substitute Brian Testolin was on hand to slide the loose ball home. Could City get back on level terms? Well they gave it a good shot. Not for the first time Darryl Siaw got to the by-line and his cross was screwed wide by Kieran Campbell. With ten minutes remaining Siaw and Opoku set Chris Tancock up for a shot which rattled the post from 12 yards. As if to show how it should be done Greenford’s Testolin broke free minutes later and comfortably picked his spot, followed a further minute later when he tucked home a penalty to complete a 10 minute hat-trick. Playing now for pride City kept going forward. Nathaniel Williams couldn’t connect with a difficult half-volley, and Kieran Campbell went down in the box feeling that he had been clipped. Four minutes into stoppage time Dan Stewart did well to find Kieran Campbell unmarked 12 yards out from goal, and finally City found the net when his low effort beat Partridge.
Team: Luke Badiali, Chris Tancock, Endrit Dobraj, David Burton, Nemo Adams, Dan Stewart, Darryl Siaw, Robbie Mundow (Kiye Martin 73), Kieran Campbell, Jordan Gallagher (David Opoku 62), Nathaniel Williams.
Referee: Jack Oxenham
Attendance – 45