Guildford City started the 2011/12 season in style with a thrilling 6-2 victory at Mole Valley SCR. As with last season’s match here, City went two ahead before being pegged back to 2-2. But unlike our last game, City regained that two goal advantage before half time. More parallels came in the second half as the visitors peppered the home goal with shots, but this time they netted twice more to secure a strong three points.
The match, played at an energetic pace throughout, saw its first goal after just four minutes when Ben Rayner slotted home. Better was to come for City when Austin Gacheru scored after quarter of an hour. Goalkeeper Antony Hall may have been lucky to remain on the field after bringing down an oncoming forward. Hall escaped with a yellow card but Liam Holden buried the resulting penalty on 22 minutes. Just after the half hour mark, Mole Valley SCR levelled through Antony Bremner. A balanced period of play followed but City regained their early composure and struck twice shortly before half time through familiar sources. Firstly, Ben Rayner scored with a fortuitous bounce off of his knee after neat work from Moody and Gibbs. Minutes later Ben Camara, who could have scored a hat-trick in the first half alone, saw his shot saved by Bowden before Gacheru powered home to give City a 4-2 half time lead.
Mole Valley SCR were by no means out of the match but found themselves up against a more composed City defence in the second half. Antony Hall pulled off a number of excellent athletic saves, while Bowden at the opposite end was also kept busy. With both sides attacking at every opportunity, there were always going to be more goals and it was the home side’s goalmouth that saw the most action in the second half. The breakthrough came in the 70th minute when Dan Moody smashed a shot at Bowden who spilled the ball into his own net. That goal seemed to suck some of the resistance out of the hosts and City could have extended their lead further in the last few minutes – although Hall did have to make a notable short range save at the other end. As it was, substitute Joel Hughes rounded the goalkeeper on 89 minutes and stroked the ball into the net to give Guildford City a 6-2 opening day victory – although in truth both sides could have scored double!
Antony Hall, Elvis Defreitas, Ben Rayner [Capt.] (Dan Clayton 85), Tony Chaplin, Jamie Thoroughgood, Corey Holder, Dan Moody, Youcef Oudjidane, Austin Gacheru (Luke Bradnick 78), Ben Camara (Joel Hughes 63), Jaydon Gibbs.
Unused substitutes: Michael Hall, Cory Knight
Cautions: Antony Hall, Youcef Oudjidane