Report by Alan Burgess
Godalming 1 (0) Selsey 1 (1) – Southern Combination
Back to Wey Court for the return fixture with Selsey following that fine win at their place just 5 weeks ago. A reminder of our excellent away record of 5 wins from 6 the only reversal coming at Worthing. It’s the home results that been a little disappointing and so it proved again today. Plenty of pressure and good build up play but none of it bringing goals from open play.
With the Remembrance silence having been well observed Godalming lined up with Alfie Mickley in goal, what appeared to be a back three of Luke Beale, James Colinese and Ollie McAleese with Matt Cox and Luca Scanella playing wider on the right and left respectively. Ross Cheek, James Mariner and Rob Parrot in the middle with Sam Boultwood and Rikkie Letch in front. The bench was manned by Kurt Greenaway, new signing Luke Taylor, Danny Mills, Jason Cotton and Luke Avery.
From the first attack Boulty had an early good shout for a corner turned down and the combination play of Mazza, Boulty and Matt Cox forced that first corner on 7 minutes. After a timely clearance from the Skipper and Alfie dealing easily with the resulting attack it was all Gees. Boulty was just beaten by the keeper to a one on one followed by Luca freeing Rikkie Letch who was fouled over on the left. Ross Cheek’s free kick was narrowly turned wide. Coxy crossed into the box from the right to appeals for a handball, not given. After a lengthy stoppage for an injury to Selsey’s No. 4 Boulty was unlucky to see a 30-yard shot go inches wide of the left-hand post.
30 minutes gone and against the play Selsey won and converted what was in my opinion a soft penalty. I think we have all lost count of the number of times we have been in this position recently. It was not until a few minutes after the goal that Selsey won their first corner. Banana skin 2 nearly followed when Godalming conceded another penalty as half time loomed, James Colinese booked and adjudged to have fouled his man after a rare Selsey breakaway. This time Alfie came to the rescue diving to his right to turn the ball around the post. Half time 0-1.
The floodlights came on and Dave’s Disco lights were playing around the main stand looking to liven the gloom. Something of a media event this week with a professional looking camera on the gantry and another down in the corner. They were probably Selsey’s or else after following Spurs and Juventus Amazon are planning ‘All or Nothing- A Season with Godalming Town’ and haven’t told us to mind our language yet.
No changes for the Gees as they emerged for the second half and continued the momentum with a chance for Boulty, Rikkie Letch placing the rebound from the keeper just over. A Ross Cheek cross lead to the Gees’ first corner of the half taken by Luca and followed by another shout for handball, again turned down. On 53 minutes Boulty was replaced by Jason Cotton who played his part in several attacking moves as we continued to raid down the wings. He was unlucky to be tackled just before being able to get away a shot on the hour mark and the opposing keeper managed to punch away the ball before he could connect with another Luca cross. Ross Parrot would have liked to have done better with a header from a Ross Cheek corner that passed just over the bar.
63 minutes and Kurt replaced Mazza adding to the threat upfront and then it came right as Cheeky on a forward run was brought down in the box. We have all seen worse challenges not given but Jason took the ball and smashed it into the roof of the net, 1-1. Gees poured forward, in one move having three players called offside. Progressively the three remaining substitutes were introduced as Liam Avery, Danny Mills and debutant Luke Taylor replaced Luca, Rikkie and Matt Cox.
Personally, but what do I know, I’m not a fan of the 5 subs thing and it seemed to break the momentum, not helped by the Selsey 15 and 16 coming on and sharpening up their forward line. We still created chances up at their end, but Alfie was being called into the game more, confidently plucking crosses out of the air, and getting down sharply to deny the onrushing No.15. He pulled out another goal line save before blocking a dangerous late free kick where the rebound fortunately flew into Row Z, aka the Trees.
Final whistle 1-1, I don’t do Man of the Match, have you seen the price of a bottle of Champagne these days? But let’s break the rules and award a can of the players favourite “Strongbow Dark Fruit” to Alfie Mickley.
Before we go a big thank you to all of you stalwarts of the Club for putting on the Race Night, loved that Apple desert.
Next and for the third time of asking it’s ‘Up for the Cup’ again on Tuesday, Molesey at home, 7.45pm. The forecast is not good and on Saturday the doomsayers and weather watchers were beginning to talk of a ground switch, remember the Pagham game last season. Keep your eyes out for the latest news.