Saturday 24th October 2009
By Shaun Keddle
Two crazy goals in the opening five minutes and three nil down after twenty minutes were the significant factors that saw the Guild exit the Kent Intermediate Challenge Shield at the first hurdle.
With Norton Sports not having a fixture in the Kent League, it made this tie even more difficult with the inclusion of Rogers, Welling, Price and Holden who are all current Norton Sports squad players and Donigue and Glover who are just released this season.
For the Guild; Cooke was unavailable and Travers was unfit. Hawkes was in for Mumford in goal and in came Stevens, Kendall and Elliott from the previous week with Warren, skipper Judge, Parmenter and Wray taking to the bench.
After two minutes the Guild went behind from a dubious penalty. Hawkes clearly got something on the ball before taking out Price, but neither referee nor linesman saw the connection and Price smashed home from the resulting spot kick. Two minutes later and a calamitous own goal that nestled into the corner of the net, saw the Guild go further behind.
Despite the early setbacks, the Guild decided to start playing football and three quick chances in succession could have seen the Guild go at least level. The clearest of the chances fell to Hughes whose header was well saved by Donigue in the Woodstock Park goal.
Against the run of play, the Park went further ahead after the Guild failed to clear a corner and a Park midfielder finished the loose ball. Three chances, three goals.
At this stage, most sides would have collapsed but the Guild continued to play football and pressed to reduce the arrears. However, at half time the Guild were disappointed and did not deserve to be three behind.
At the half we spoke about continuing our football but we needed to make the ball stick upfront as we were all looking for same ball and get tighter to our men defensively.
Wray replaced Stevens.
The substitution soon paid off after a well struck free kick by Williams J from 25 yards smacked against the post leaving Donigue rooted to the spot. Wray was first to react to score his first ever goal for the first team.
The momentum was now with the Guild and we kept on pressing and pressing restricting the Park to the odd breakaway. The arrears were further reduced when Williams J's sweetly struck rehearsed free kick struck the back of the net. Game on!
The Guild pushed and pushed and the fixture was turning into a battle and the Guild dug in deep. A couple of half chances fell our way before Price at the other end was unlucky to see his effort cannon off the bar to seal the game and Hawkes pulled off a fine save on 80 minutes.
With just a couple of minutes on the clock, Woodstock Park sealed their place in the next round against Fleet Leisure when the ball was prodded home from close range after confusion in the Guild box.
Overall it was a very good game. Obviously, the Park got off to an excellent start but once the game got going we played some decent football. We did not take our early chances either but we showed tremendous fighting spirit to battle back from 3-0 down to get it to 3-2.
Playing a team of obvious quality and a team that has access to a number of Norton players, the game was always going to be an uphill struggle. However, with an experimental line up, we still looked the better side for large periods of the game.
This is our first competitive loss of the season, it’s only a cup game so no need to hit the panic button, but let’s see how we respond come Saturday.
Man of the Match was Elliott with a whole-hearted and committed display and was always in the thick of the action.
This week we are back to league action against Old Bexlians and we must look to gain all three points from this fixture to keep in contention with those above us.
Farnborough: 1. Hawkes; 2. Elliot; 3. Kendall; 4. Davis; 5. Hughes; 6. Abbott ; 7. Williams J ; 8. Perkins; 9. Williams L ; 10. Cleaver; 11. Stevens
Subs: 16. Wray for 11. Stevens; 14. Parmenter for 10. Cleaver
Subs Not Used: 12. Travers; 13. Judge and 15. Warren
Woodstock Park: 1. Donigue; 2. Slatter; 3. Boychatt; 4. Rogers; 5. Welling; 6. Karim; 7. Holden; 8. Ellis; 9. Overtton; 10. Price; 11. Vechiolla
Subs: 12. Glover; 13. Travelsi; 14. Turner; 15. Hogburn; 16. Wright.
Referee: Mr. A Prime
Officials: Mr. S Kendall
Man of the match: Ben Elliott