CITY put up a good fight in this cup tie and were unfortunate not to get on the scoresheet against a disappointing Molesey side. Ultimately, however, they were unable to recover from going a goal down shortly before the end of the first half. Unable to emulate the heroics of last season where they knocked out a Ryman Premier League side and pushed a Ryman First Division side to extra time and penalties, they must now concentrate on the league and perhaps some glory in the Premier Challenge Cup.
Once again I have to admit I was not at this match, as I was forced to work late but, braving the sub zero temperatures were Dan and Dave – students from Surrey Uni and founder members of the university’s Football Appreciation Society. They kindly agreed to write a match report so I hand over to them……
This was a match which typified City’s bad luck this season. Despite numerous chances to win this tie, or at least take it to extra time and penalties, the ball stubbornly refused to find the back of the net. There was at least one silver lining to the evening for Dave, however – his home town team Cambridge City edged past Canvey Island 4-2 on penalties in the F.A. Trophy. Unfortunately his adopted team could not emulate this achievement.
City started the brighter, and were soon passing the ball around and getting it into dangerous positions – particularly in the final third. The Molesey keeper certainly looked uncomfortable and there was more than one occasion where City could have stolen the lead. Perhaps the key moment in the first half came in the 12th minute when Guildford won a corner. The ball was swung in and the keeper failed to hold it, dropping it into the path of new Guildford striker, Matt Rothwell whose effort ricocheted off the woodwork to the dismay of the travelling fans. Against the run of play, the deadlock was broken in the 41st minute when ex Under 13 England international Lewis Ackerman finished clinically. Doing all he could between the sticks, Dave Tidy could not prevent the ball hitting the back of the net.
As with Saturday’s game, Guildford did not let their heads drop and battled away for an equaliser which would take the tie to extra time. They lacked the sharpness of the first half however, and, to the frustration of the small band of City fans who had braved the conditions, just could not make their final ball count. The home side, for their part were not fairing much better and the match degenerated into a bit of stalemate – neither side being able to summon up sufficient quality to really trouble the opposingr goalkeeper. It was almost a mercy for both the freezing supporters and frustrated players when the ref blew up for fulltime.
Yet again there were positives to be taken from this game, notably the effort and determination shown by the players to get something from the tie. The change of management does at least seem to have brought back some of the desire that has been so lacking in most of the games this season. While the Premier Cup remains, this season must surely now be about using this spirit to help secure CCL Premier League survival.
Subs not used:
Subs not used: