15 Jan 2024
Match report by Dave Hawtin
It almost feels obvious that 'moments' in a football match can dramatically change the result of a game, but it was somewhat proven on Saturday.
This Guilford side were not the same side Alton had already beaten twice this season as nearly the entire personel had changed and they will feel that they really should have taken, or indeed deserved, some form of points over the 90 minutes.
The visitors started the game well and were on top for the first 20 minutes, should have taken the lead when a striker was free on goal but he took the shot too early and looped the ball into the arms of the grateful Mees in the home goal.
Slowly Alton gained a foothold and Brice had a great opportunity from a corner but could only direct his header wide when really well placed. Goalless at the break.
The second half was a cagey affair with the home side marginally on top territorially but without threatening. The visitors had pace down both flanks and remained a huge threat. From one incursion they had another great chance to take the lead. A nice link up down the right resulted in a pacey cross to the far post where a striker was luring unmarked, but somehow he managed to put the ball back across the goal to Mees who was laying prone nearly on the goal line following his attempt to block the initial cross. Relief again for the home fans.
On 68 minutes Guildford eventually took the lead. A quick break found a midfielder in acres of space and he fed a lovely ball through the defence to a galloping striker who this time despatched the ball past the advancing Mees.
with 20 minutes to go Alton Manager Kev Adair made numerous changes introducing fresh legs and a bit of height to the attack to challenge the two centre halves who up to that point had dealt well with the home attack.
It paid dividends almost immediately. Guildford were unable to clear a corner and Cam Miller was on the spot to smash the ball into the back of the net.
Cue chaos in the visitors as they hit the self-destruct button. Panic set in every time Alton threatened their goal resulting a bizarre own goal that gave the home side the lead. A clearance was ballooned high into the air and was dropping right in the danger zone of their penalty area, the retreating full back trying to keep an eye on the ball as it dropped somehow managed to clip the ball past his own goalkeeper keeper who was advancing toward him. If they had communicated to each other it was completely unnecessary as there was a minimal threat attacking wise from the home side. That said there was little sympathy afforded to the two culprits from the home sides fans.
The visitors were now completely deflated and Alton turned the screw. A foul 30 yards out resulted in a super save as the keeper redeedmed himself pushing the ball away for a corner as Perry Coles shot arrowed toward the top right hand corner. It turned out to be an audition for the real thing for Coles as just a couple of minutes later a more or less identical opportunity arose only this time it was a little closer at 25 yards out and this time he flashed the ball into the far left hand corner of the net past the flat footed keeper.
Alton travel to Fleet Town this Saturday 20th January. Kick off 3pm.