Guildford City (0) 1, Knaphill (1) 3
by Barry Underwood
Once again City fell to defeat at their home ground making it very nearly two months since they last experienced a home league victory. Cup success is one thing but soon City need to get back on the league trail. This was another match where the home side had enough chances to get something from the game, but as so often the chances were missed. In fact the major difference between the sides was Knaphill’s pair of twin strikers Charlie Postance and Jimmy Norman who were clinical on the day and between them scored their side’s three goals. The pitch was heavy after recent rain but it didn’t prevent both sides from playing adventurous football. Right from the start full-back Callum Wilson looked to get forward, and on four minutes his early cross into the box took a deflection just wide of the post. On the quarter hour Mario Embalo shot from outside the box but his low effort was saved low down by Alex Harris. Postance and Norman were enjoying plenty of space up front and it was no surprise when Knaphill took the lead on 16 minutes. City failed to clear the ball which fell to Charlie Postance at the back post where he made no mistake. City’s star of the first half was Darryl Siaw who numerous times drove himself to the by-line, but on each occasion his crosses came to nothing; Shawn Lyle and Mario Embalo amongst others either miscuing or seeing their efforts blocked. Five minutes before the interval City had a golden chance to level the scores. Mario Embalo found himself through on goal, with a sprinting Darryl Siaw on his right hand side. Embalo chose to shoot and his effort was saved for a corner by Harris when surely the simpler option was to set up Siaw for a tap-in. Within seconds a frustrated Bobby Dormer saw the red mist fall and he was dismissed for retaliation. In stoppage time Embalo did shoot wide from an acute angle, whilst Luke Badiali saved well after the ball had been given away cheaply.
Approaching the hour Connor Close’s cross come shot hit the top of the crossbar, but this was merely a warning and minutes later Josh Coke’s square ball was met by Charlie Postance who poked the ball home from 12 yards. Despite being two goals down and down to ten men Guildford didn’t let their heads drop. Callum Wilson’s 20 yard effort thundered against the post and was cleared, and on 69 minutes from one of several strong runs Mario Embalo looked to have had his legs taken from under him in the box, although crucially the referee disagreed. A minute later there was another penalty appeal when Darryl Siaw was fouled and this time a spot kick was awarded and Mario Embalo stepped up to drive a low shot home. Within a further two minutes hopes of a comeback were extinguished when Jimmy Norman fairly smashed home from the edge of the box. With a few minutes remaining both sides had chances. Jimmy Norman shot wide from a free-kick, and debutant Matt Males somehow shot wide from Alpha Cauwenbergh’s pinpoint cross. For City another match has slipped away, whilst for the visitors it was their clinical finishing that won the day.
Team: Luke Badiali, Callum Wilson, Tom Booth, Greg Haydon (Dan Akinwande 34), Nemo Adams, Matt Males, Bobby Dormer, Darryl Siaw, Mario Embalo, Shawn Lyle (Alpha Cauwenbergh 80), Kiye Martin (Cameron Keremo 46). Unused subs: Robbie Mundow, Jamel Johnson.
Referee: Michael Hayden
Attendance – 84