Report by Graham Harris
Godalming 2 (1) V (1) 2 Montpelier Villa
Frustrating is the word that came to my mind to describe the game as I walked away from the ground, having watched probably the best team performance from the lads for a while, yet seeing them take only a single point.
The G’s had plenty of possession and scoring opportunities and went ahead twice, only to see their guests come back to level the score each time.
The name Montpelier Villa conjures up all sorts of romantic images of the South of France. No idea what the significance of the name is, but they must have been well pleased with getting a win against top of the table Midhurst and Easebourne 3-1 last week, so this was looking like tough fixture for the Gs.
So, I am sure that Phil and his management team and the squad will also be feeling frustrated about the result. I would also imagine that the visitors will recognise that they were a little fortunate to be coming away with a share of the points.
While the G’s were still without Myles Davidson and Sam Boultwood through injury and Kurt Greenaway, not available I believe, there were two new signings who were in the starting line-up. Ollie McAleese and Ellis Wint.
Adrian Giles was in goal, with Matt Cox, Luke Beale (Captain), Ollie MacAleese and James Colinese, making up the back four, in the middle James Mariner and Ellis Wint with James Frudd and Lucca Scanella as the wide players. Cameron Edwin and Connor Young were playing upfront. There was a very strong bench with Connor Blanchard, Elijah Carter, Jahobi Maher and last weeks new signing John Coussens.
The G’s started the game really well, harrying the visiting defence, as they did last week and getting the ball on a couple of occasions. Connor Young broke down the left and cut in before getting in a shot, which the visiting keeper blocked at his near post.
Then, on about 11 minutes, James Frudd challenged a defender on the G’s right, won the ball, got forward and pulled the ball beautifully into the area for Connor Young to score the opening goal. All looked good as the G’s made more opportunities and getting one on one with the visiting keeper without converting on several occasions.
But then the visitors equalised with a long shot that curled just inside Adrian’s far post rather against the run of play.
The G’s continued their efforts and had a lot of the ball, moving it quickly, with Cameron and Connor Young getting in some good positions and even Ellis going through, but his shot went just wide of the mark.
Just before half time the G’s won a throw in on their left, deep in their opposition’s half. They worked the ball across into the area where James Frudd got in a cracking shot, which was only bettered by an equally great save by the MV keeper, diving down low to push the ball round for a corner with his right hand.
The G’s got the ball in the net again just before the break with a great move when James Frudd broke away from inside his own half and linked beautifully with Connor Young with a couple of passes in the build-up. James played the ball in low and Cameron always alert manged to back heel the ball into the net, but the lino flagged for an offside.
So, 1-1 at half time, but all going quite well, but James Mariner had gone down with a problem with his right thigh it seemed. He was replaced by Jahobi.
The second half was a more even affair with Adrian required to bring off a couple of good saves, but on the whole the G’s still doing well and making chances of their own.
Then 20 minutes into the second half James Colinese who was having a super game yet again went down and needed treatment on what looked like an ankle injury. He was replaced by Connor Blanchard who went to right back while Matt Cox moved to the left side.
The G’s were knocking on the door again and had several near chances, which were blocked or cleared by some desperate last ditch defending.
Lucca then went down injured in front of the stands after another good performance from him. Fortunately, he was able to resume after treatment.
Another good run from Fruddy saw him get the ball into the area and it was only part cleared, as far as Jahobi who was able to fend off defenders while getting in a low shot with his left foot that found its way below the MV keeper and into the net. G’s back to 2 – 1 in the lead.
Phil then brought Elijah on to replace Ellis. Elijah got in one in particular shot that was a corker, but was deflected over the bar by a defender.
The visitors got an equaliser to break the G’s supporter’s hearts in the closing minutes when the home side seemed to have plenty of bodies back and the initial attack dealt with. But somehow there was a fair bit of space in the G’s penalty area. So frustrating not to have taken all three points.
Several of the visiting team were left on the floor when the ref finally blew for full time. It looked like they were shattered.
If we can keep this group of players together, we should start racking up the points.