Fringe Box



One Point Is Enough – Guildford City Avoids the Drop!

Published on: 29 Apr, 2024
Updated on: 29 Apr, 2024

Mitchell wheels away after scoring City’s critical point-winning goal.

Guildford City (0) 1, Epsom & Ewell (1) 1

By Barry Underwood, GCFC secretary

With a point required to see off the threat of relegation, there was a definite element of relief in the cheering around the Spectrum ground when City striker Ben Mitchell notched his second-half equaliser.

With Guildford by that stage dominating on the pitch, and a favourable latest score from Colliers Wood being reported by those keeping check, City saw out the remaining 20 minutes to ensure safety.

Epsom themselves had been in the relegation mire until seven days previous but they were now secure.

Despite being safe, Epsom started brightly and an early shot on goal sailed over the bar. On 15 minutes Adam Longman – in his first match for four months – acted sharply to tip an effort over the bar.

A minute later Epsom went ahead when Sirak Negassi thumped an effort from 15 yards past the diving Longman.

Goalkeeper Adam Longman back from injury

But full credit to Guildford who responded positively. The impressive Owen Sims went down in the box and whilst the assistant ref flagged for a penalty, the referee waved play on. Despite a post-incident consultation between the officials the referee’s decision stood.

This spurred City on and Sims saw a volley go just wide. Adam Longman saved a close-range Epsom header, but City really started to turn the screw.

On 36 minutes the home side created three chances. Rayyan Adam’s header was tipped onto the bar and over for a corner.

Sims’ effort from the corner hit the post and from a scramble Tolu Ajayi-Obe’s effort was saved for a further corner. This time Ajayi-Obe’s header hit the crossbar and City fans were wondering if the ball would ever go into the net.

City put pressure on the Epsom and Ewell goal but frustratingly no goal results.

Just prior to the break Ben Mitchell’s 20-yarder saw O’Donovan get down low to push the ball around the post.

Manager Tristan Rees introduced substitutes Shane Johnson and Darnell Ramsey for the second
period as City lined up with more attacking intent.

As the hour approached Johnson headed the ball back across goal when he might have been more direct. Minutes later Jamie Hilton passed to the overlapping Owen Sims who powerful cross shot narrowly missed the far post and, a little later, the skipper James Glover headed just wide from a set-piece.

City’s much-needed goal arrived on 71 minutes. Ben Mitchell took possession just outside the box. Sensing his chance, Mitchell drove forward and despite defensive pressure he shot past O’Donovan into the net.

With 10 minutes remaining a high ball nearly bounced over O’Donovan with Anthony Ogbanufe lurking, but the goalkeeper managed to recover to clear the danger.

As the final whistle approached Owen Sims’s free-kick was palmed away for a corner. But in this match there were no late dramas and the point gained confirmed City’s place next season at Step 5 in England’s football hierarchy.

Tristan Rees

Team: Adam Longman, Owen Sims, Rayyan Adam, Tolu Ajayi-Obe James Glover, Niall Stillwell, Leon Dadey (Lewis Taylor 56), Shiloh Ndiulor (Darnell Ramsey 45), Ben Mitchell (Anthony Ogbanufe 76), Jamie Hilton, Leo Anthony (Shane Johnson 45). Unused subs: Jack Phillips.

Referee: Ian Lane

Attendance – 151

Listen to Ian Plested’s Post Match interview with team manager Tristan Rees here:

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Responses to One Point Is Enough – Guildford City Avoids the Drop!

  1. Olly Azad Reply

    April 29, 2024 at 2:35 pm

    A really fantastic and spirited performance by Guildford City right through to the very end. For Ben Mitchell to score that crucial goal on 71 minutes was simply magical and then to see The City players aiming for more goals was encouraging indeed.

    GCFC can now put the prospect of relegation truly behind them and look forward to positioning themselves at Step 5 in England’s football hierarchy.

  2. Brian Holt Reply

    April 30, 2024 at 1:03 pm

    Well done to all the city players, only Epsom and Ewell goalkeeper stopped city from scoring in the first half, then after Epsom and Ewell scored city hit back with a good goal. So the final score was 1-1 and city are safe.

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