Horley Town (0) 1, Guildford City (1) 2
by Barry Underwood
Guildford got back to winning ways with a battling victory at the New Defence. There had been little between the sides in the first half, but the visitors dominated possession after the break and fully deserved their late winner. It was actually the home side that started the sharper, and after just four minutes the returning Stuart Norman was called into action to tip over a dipping shot from the edge of the box. City’s first attempt on goal came moments later from a free kick when Jamie Pearce’s header was comfortably saved. Horley did have the ball in the net on 10 minutes but the assistant’s flag was raised for offside. City had started to look dangerous on the right flank, and it was Cameron Gyeabour’s low cross into the box that gave Jamil Saleh the chance to side foot home from six yards. Without looking dominant Guildford did look dangerous every time they went forward. Jamie Pearce headed wide from a free kick, whilst for Horley a similar header also went wide. On 35 minutes there was an extraordinary incident that should have seen a Guildford penalty. In attempting to launch a big kick from his hands, Horley’s veteran keeper George Hyde ran into the back of a retreating Guildford player. The referee saw the incident, booked the goalkeeper, and awarded City a free kick on the edge of the box, although the incident had occurred some five yards inside the box! As it happened Saleh’s free kick was brilliantly saved by Hyde tipping the ball over via the crossbar. As the game reached 45 minutes Jamil Saleh’s shot from 20 yards went wide, whilst a cross shot from Horley caused concern in the City defence.
Guildford were more creative after the break and within minutes of the restart Enow Ojong shot just wide. Minutes later a Jamie Pearce long throw caused consternation in the Horley defence, and from a flick on Ojong’s shot on the turn was brilliantly saved by Hyde low down to his right. On the hour Horley came close. Stuart Norman saved well for a corner which led to a shot over the bar from a good position. Fine passing put Enow Ojong through on goal some 35 yards out but surprisingly he opted for an early shot that was comfortably saved. Guildford had a series of corners mid-half and from one Scott Costello’s near post effort was blocked on the line. Stuart Norman made a blocking save with 15 minutes remaining, and within a minute Horley were level. A high free kick fell to veteran defender Jack Poplett who converted from close range. Guildford’s winner came from the penalty spot with three minutes remaining. An aerial challenge from a long throw saw a defenders hands go up and block the ball. Up stepped Zeid Hannachi who netted despite Hyde’s strong hand. So a valuable three points for City going into a 14 day break.
Team: Stuart Norman, Stephan Langley, Leon Dadey, Jamil Saleh (Neil Roissetter 85), Scott Costello, Jamie Pearce, Dejarhn Grant (Zeid Hannachi 77), Ashley Hitchinson, Cameron Gyeabour (Jack Webb 77), Enow Ojong (Michael Leech 90), Harvey Valter (Lloyd Connelly 90).
Referee: Gulam Damji