Spelthorne Sports (1) 5, Guildford City (0) 0
by Barry Underwood
Guildford City’s five match winning streak came to an abrupt end at Staines Road on Saturday when in the end a five star Spelthorne performance put City to the sword. In truth this probably didn’t deserve to be a five goal defeat but a late City collapse put a handsome gloss on the score line for the victors. This just wasn’t going to be City’s day. For much of the first half the visitors looked lack lustre. Spelthorne looked livelier; often being first to the ball in the centre of the park and early momentum saw two early chances which fell to Simo Mbolnwi, the first of them forcing Nic Taylor into a smart save. Guildford for their part couldn’t fashion a clear opening and their efforts on goal in the first half were restricted to pot-shots from range. Spelthorne opened the scoring after 13 minutes after City failed to clear their lines and the ball was drilled back low into the corner. For City Darren Caesar saw a header saved at full stretch, and a 25 yarder from Matt Anton, one of several, which zipped low past the foot of the post. It took two fine saves from Nic Taylor at the end of the half to keep City in the match; the first was from a deflection off Martin Dynan and the second from a close range shot from Lee Staples.
Several recent matches have seen City lift their game in the second period and there was no reason to suppose that this wouldn’t happen again. The removal of Martin Dynan at the break due to injury clearly didn’t help though, and 16 year old substitute George Patterson was thrown into the fray. To be fair City did up their game and for the games third quarter they did look the better side. A corner from Sanchez Benali after 53 minutes found Matt Anton’s head six yards from goal but the excellent chance was lost as Anton’s header glanced wi
de. On the hour Darren Caesar curled a free-kick inches wide of the post and it seemed that sooner or later City might just get back on level terms. The game changed in Spelthorne’s favour just minutes later when Sports goalkeeper Dane Buss was dismissed leaving the home side with ten men. That might seem like an odd comment but that was exactly what happened. Buss was shown a red card for bringing down Matt Anton on the edge of the box. Buss’s place in goal was taken by Jake Hicks who immediately pulled off a fine save from Sanchez Bengali’s free-kick. But that in truth was all he had to do for the remainder of the game as Spelthorne showed tremendous spirit to score four goals in the remaining 17 minutes. A header at the far post made it two, whilst with eight minutes remaining Spelthorne had time on the edge of the box to pick their spot for a third. George Patterson did well to prevent a goal-scoring opportunity at the far post but in stoppage time a
near rampant home side exploited City’s confusion to score twice more. City’s winning run was always going to end somewhere but whilst nobody expected such a score-line, credit has to be given to the home side for an excellent performance.
Team: Nic Taylor, Steve Lang (Shay Morally 65), James Davies, Darryl Siaw, Martin Dynan (George Patterson 46), Darren Caesar, Tom Booth (Callum Sexton 86), Chad Goulter, Matt Anton, Tyrame Hemmings, Sanchez Benali.
Referee: Gareth Mays