Marlow 4 – 1 Guildford City

Worry not about this result. This was not, by any stretch of the imagination, a poor performance and the travelling Sweeney fans present will have been hugely encouraged by their sides display for the vast majority of the match. Indeed for much of the second half City only trailed by a single goal, and were looking the more likely to go on and win the match. It was only very late in the game that amidst a flurry of substitutions, Marlow scored two further goals; one of which was hugely controversial.

Early on Tom Mudge struck the crossbar with a powerful drive from 25 yards and both sides had half chances as the game ebbed and flowed. Especially in the first period City played some enterprising and entertaining football with midfield trio Walshe, Botwe and Burrell impressing with their passing and movement. A little unluckily City went beyond from the penalty spot in the 21st minute when a handball was spotted in the box. Not deterred Guildford equalised on 31 minutes when Andrew Dalhouse fired home following a corner.

Crucially City conceded almost immediately in freakish fashion. A long ball forward was missed by Aaron Bufton under pressure, and the ball was slid comfortably into the empty net. At 2-1 down City continued to play football, and several chances were carved out with fine passing moves, with often just the last touch preventing a clear shot on goal.

It was only in the last ten minutes with City tiring, that Marlow dominated proceedings. The home side’s third goal was tapped in by a striker standing clearly in an offside position, and with literally the last kick of the game Marlow scored with a fine shot low into the corner.

If ever there was a match to exemplify the mantra “It’s not the results in pre-season, it’s the performance” then this was it.

Interviews with Dean Thomas and Tom Mudge will follow soon.

Team: Aaron Bufton, Joshua Clayman (Bryan Harrison), Tuan West, Nathan Nelson (Darren Evans), Tom Mudge, Aaron Dalhouse (Bruce McPhail), Kieran Burrell, Ben Walshe, Andrew Dalhouse, Cambo Smith (Tyrone Roberts), Kobi Botwe (Matthew King).