Godalming Town 1 – 2 Chertsey Town
This was only the second time that Gav Smith will have seen the squad in action and the first time Joint Manager Jon Palmer has seen any of them. But, what a frustrating result, yet again, for the Gees.
In this bottom of the table clash it seemed that the Gees might finally earn three points in the League. Their first half performance looked like they would blow away their opponents. But then Chertsey came out stronger in the second half and the Gees somehow conspired to lose the game when they ran out of players and puff, which was otherwise theirs for the taking.
It was great to see Wes Harrison at the back for the Gees again and in fact on the day wearing the captain’s armband. Also, great to see Rory Sellick back at Wey Court and in the starting line-up. Robert Webbe was also back, but unusually playing at centre back alongside Wes, presumably as there were no other candidates. Isy Nzelo was at right back, Kurt Greenaway at left back, and Dimitri Kyriatkis in goal.
The home side started well playing towards the road end and Rory got the first Gees shot in within a few minutes. Well struck, but too close to the visiting keeper to really trouble him.
The Gees pressed well throughout the first half and dominated play, both when they were attacking and forcing numerous corners, but also when they were not in possession. The midfield, with Piers Oldland and Rory chasing down the opposition along with Eugene Bongo and the impressive Gurken Gokman, giving their opponents little time on the ball. Mert Varli started out wide with John Bennet wearing the number 9 shirt.
The Gees were displaying some good football and on about 17 minutes Gurken Gokman worked his way forward on the right, cut inside and hit a curling left footed shot just inside the far post. It was a shot that Darren Wheeler would have been proud of. The Gees 1 -0 up.
More chances came. Even the reliable Piers Oldland lifted a shot over the bar from just a couple of yards out, when it looked easier to score. This after Mert Varli had got down the wing well and crossed low across the penalty area.
Mert Varli went close himself with a diagonal shot minutes later, as did the mercurial Isy Nzelo turning up in attack but just not able to get his shot on target. The visitors did start to get a bit more into the game towards the end of the first half and indeed with the last kick of the first half they hit a low shot from their right, which Dimitri could not hold and a visiting forward was on hand to tap the ball home to equalise.
HT Godalming 1-1 Chertsey Town
The second half saw the visitors step up and with their pace up front they played high balls out of defence. This almost proved successful when they had a one on one with Dimitri early in the second half when the Gees were pressing. The shot went well over the bar. Isy Nzelo made a number of crucial interceptions and timely tackles and was moved into centre back position when Wes Harrison went off after he had looked so solid.
Piers went off after receiving attention for a back problem, as did Mert Varli . Tre Trowers came on in front of the back four, Estoban Salgado came on out wide and with Ben Cotton still nursing an injury the only option left was the Gees replacement keeper Tom Webb who came on upfront. With these substitutions made, Gurken Gokman went down off the field of play nursing his hip. He finally limped off after treatment. So the Gees down to ten men.
Having had a great game, as usual, Dimitri then tried to play his way out of his area, when put under pressure by a back pass, and gave away a penalty to give the visitors all three points. As I do my Stewarding duties at the away team end I got to hear the comments as Chertsey left the pitch. They were mighty relieved to get the result found it a tough contest so well done to the lads.
The performance in the first half must give us encouragement that things are on the up and the new management team have been universally welcomed at the club.
Michael (Stato) Stats
Teams G’s Chertsey
attempts 14 8
on target 4 6
corners 5 5
fouls 11 12
yellows 3 2
poss% 1st 60 40
poss% 2nd 40 60
Bovril- excellent as always. Comfort in the face of adversity.