Here is PDW’s excellent report from today’s win ooop north:
A workmanlike, unremarkable performance glided us past Guiseley, who lacked the necessary guile to break down a resolute defensive performance. In truth the longer the match went on, the less likely the Yorkshire side were to score, save from perhaps a set piece. To be fair to our oppo’s, they gave it a good shot (or would have done could they shoot straight).
Typical cup tie away at lower division opponents, who were up for it. Not pretty, but got through to the next round. The highlight of the game, the ball bursting after Keane’s challenge on Boshell. Not seen that for a long time, in a proper game anyway.
After a poor first half performance, when a pass to a man wearing an orange shirt would have been a novelty. It was the introduction of the pregnant one gave the team performance a lift. Making the goal for Barnes-Homer to slot excellently, must have been the magic of the bright orange booties he was wearing. Crow was involved in a number of good moves, playing off Barnes-Homer and with that performance has gone above Jason Walker, once again starved of service, but presently games past the ginger one by.
From that moment on, the result was rarely in doubt. We defended well, if slightly deeply and relied on counter attacks, which resulted in a number of opportunities. Guiseley had plenty of the ball, but their strange reluctance to use the width on a soft surface, meant they went direct, with Kroca and Pilkington in fine form again. With Graham something of a makeshift right back and Murray not exactly Stuart Pearce reincarnated at left back, they may have had some joy down the flanks. Although the hosts were generally too slow and wasteful (as we were) with their passing.
Good that we dug out a result without playing well, which is something we need to do in the League, with THEM from the M23 land winning late AGAIN (They are turning into Plymouth circa 2001/02). Even my basic mathematics can work out to reach the one hundred point mark, means we need to win fourteen out of sixteen remaining matches in just over two months.
Guiseley is a tiny little ground, apparently the crowd was half the capacity, you would have needed a shoe horn to squeeze double that amount in. Nice, friendly club, with Luton fans probably making up about half the attendance although with no segregation, it’s difficult to judge. The ground has a noticeable slope which we defended in the first half, with a low sun in their eyes. That’s Yorkshire’s summer for 2011 gone then. The pitch looked in reasonable nick, when I arrived, although the omens weren’t great as it started to cut up during the warm-up.
Surprised at the strength of the squad selected for the game, with now every midweek having a fixture, with a few injuries and Money’s comments about using the squad, was expecting the toddlers out in force again.
However the starting eleven was – K.Pilkington, back four of Graham, Kroca, G.Pilkington, Murray. Midfield of Morgan-Smith, Keane, Lawless, Howells. With Walker and Mr Marmite himself, MBH up top.
As for Guiseley for the level they are at level. They looked better than Corby and Gloucester from the league which we have played this season. Peyton, the slaphead in midfield, looked to control things in the middle of the park. Needham looked tidy enough on the left. Walshaw, who is meant to be their gun player, was good on the ball, but after a couple of crude challenges on him, faded rather.
First half we were poor. Even allowing for things like the slope, the pitch, the home team coming out quickly, we were desperate on the ball. Giving away the ball when not under pressure. Good job K.Pilkington and his defenders were awake. Against a better side we could have been a goal or two behind at half time after a very lacklustre performance. We looked to play on the break against a side who set up a very high line against us, risky tactic against people with pace like MBH, AMS and Claude, but as we were so bad with the ball in the opening half, shots didn’t rain in on Drench’s goal.
Keane covered a lot of ground, only Howells was up to standard on the ball. An early scare, Walshaw on the left, showing neat footwork, played the low pass into Peyton, good spot by him to see K.Pilkington off his line, but his curling effort just lack accuracy and dipped too late. Our firths attempt came from Lawless helped the ball forward, Pilkington knock down to Barnes-Homer, who produced a weak attempt at goal.
Lawless being withdrawal early after a knock, Claude coming in. Bit of a shuffle around, Claude going to his usual haunt of right wing, AMS swopping to the left, with Howells slotting inside.
As increasing the nature of modern football, long throws were the order of the day. Murray reunited with his two pastel towels, presumably nicked from Habitat – one brown and one white. Toulson their right back used them as well before Guiseley. Personally think they should ban the sodding things. It’s wastes time, if the ball is wet, use your shirt to dry it you mincer. It’s a football top, not Saville Row’s finest. Apart from the fact using a long throw in, is the football equivalent of chatting up your mate’s bird. It’s not done and lacks class.
A couple of fine interceptions by each of our centre halves, Kroca denying Walshaw a run through on goal, after a good run by Rothery, playing a give and go with Boshell. Then G.Pilkington won an important challenge with O’Neill. A fine pass down the right channel gave barnes-Homer an opportunity to cross, his pull back was eventually cleared by Ainge after walker dithered to move.
The oddest thing will the slope, is that rather the ball run away from the player, it would stop by the by-line, a tactic which took a while for our defence to cotton onto. On one such occasion Walshaw galloped after the ball, played it back into Rothery, smashing his low cross beyond the stretching figure of O’Neill, failing to get a touch.
A venture forward by Kroca and a lovely flick out to the left for Morgan-Smith to whizz past Toulson, his strike was parried out by diving Drench and Claude was on hand to turn the ball goalwards but the keeper managed to regain his footing and block the ball on the line.
Pilkington had commanded his box positively, but wasn’t exactly over worked, was called in action after Keane mistook O’Neill for a settee, an ambitious effort from Walshaw was straight at the keeper. Pilkington shortly after had to deny Walshaw after his snap shot from the right wing after being played in by O’Neill. The last couple of Trophy games, he looks like the steady Eddie who filled in last season when Tyler was injured, than the gormless tit who handed Tamworth the game up there in August.
The second half had to improve and it did. Crow on for Walker. Far more open with both teams fixture congestion a draw was far from ideal. A much needed block tackle from Graham, who is developing into a solid and reliable defender, after Walshaw had fed O’Neill with a low forward pass. Header from Eliis from another Toulson’s long throw was grabbed by K.Pilkington.
Whilst a set play looked the most likely chance for Guiseley, it was the break away with us, Crow and MBH exchanging passes, before Toulson conceded the corner, after Crow had tried to roll in MBH.
The same two combined for the winner. They shot themselves in the foot, Boshell playing Ellis in trouble with a backward pass on half way, Crow nipped in, then found Barnes-Homer cutting in from the right and confidently finishing beyond Drench into the far corner.
MBH is always a far better player when we play on the counter break, seems far happier to be able to run behind defences than play in front of the goal( to my know nothing eye) . Crow looked to have a better attitude today, was involved in most of our better play (not there was much of it you understand). The key to him is similar to that of Owusu, you must get the ball into him, they aren’t going to run, but both have good football brains.
Crow again involved poking the ball to Murray, to hit the ball wide, it worth a pop. Graham’s throw in, was hooked forwards by Keane, Barnes-Homer chasing the ball, Drench came out, cleared with a karate kick and once again Crow, just missed the target with a lob.
far more lively than the opening half, not difficult. More enterprising give and go between AMS and MBH, Howells the recipient, blasting a shot which deflected off Ellis and behind.
Our final sub saw the arrival of Mr Godfrey Poku for Morgan-Smith, who at least saw a couple of fleeting glimpses that his form maybe returning. So shutting up shop was the order of the day. After Poku’s first involvement resulted in him giving away a free kick for a barge on O’Neill. Peyton, their set piece specialist, saw K.Pilkington drift towards the centre of the goal, and tried to curl one in from the free kick where Pilkington had edged away from, just wide. Good idea.
The game was opening up, with the game played on a heavy pitch, Kroca’s headed from Keane’s free kick hardly troubled Drench. Howells being found by a fine crossfield pass from MBH, hit the ball cleanly buit Drench got down and held it well.
Guiseley kept toiling, but a classic case of the more a team has the ball the less they know what to do with it. After a patient build up from the right, Toulson fed Boshell turning the going wide to Rothery, Toulson on the over lap centred, Murray made a mess of his attempted kick away and luckily George P was first on the scene to tidy up.
Peyton warmed Kevin P’s hands with a firm strike from a free kick following Kroca catching Rothery, it was straight but the keeper just tipped it over. Howells looped a header into Drench, following Pilkington’s dug out long ball.
An attack down the right, ended up with Graham diving in riskily on Walshaw, he didn’t get a load heap of the ball, and seen them given, but Kroca blocked the newly arrived Sharry’s shot – not easy to say if you have a lisp.
Sharry looked to have a bit of pace, so was odd they didn’t put him on earlier, all their subs were used with less than a quarter of an hour remaining. He had the beating of Murray, whipped in a cross towards the centre, Pilkington managed to get enough on the ball to divert it away from Walshaw.
Kevin Pilkington 7, Luke Graham 7, Zdenek Kroca 8.5, George Pilkington 7.5 , Freddie Murray 6 , Amari Morgan – Smith 6 ( Godfrey Poku 5.5), Keith Keane 7 , Alex Lawless ( Claude Gnakpa 6),Jake Howells 8, Matthew Barnes-Homer 7.5, Jason Walker 5 ( Danny Crow 8) .
Subs not used – Mark Tyler, J.J. O’Donnell.
Guiseley – Drench, Toulson( Sharry), Ellis, Ainge, Merris, Rothery( Stamp), Boshell, Needham, O’Neill( Forrest), Walsham. Booked – Toulson