Evans View – Guiseley AFC Stutter But Remain Unbeaten in 2019

Today’s match won’t live long in the memory of the 683 fans who attended the game at Nethermoor as the division’s two draw specialists scored one apiece when Kayode Odejayi’s 18th minute opener was cancelled out by Jordan Murphy’s strike just before the half-time whistle.

The Lions started the brighter of the two sides as their two strikers, Rowan Liburd and Odejayi, were linking up nicely and about 10 minutes into the game Liburd was able to play a through ball to his attacking partner but GAFC’s No 10 hit it just wide of the post.

Guiseley stayed on the front foot and eventually got their reward when Will Thornton got on the end of a Niall Heaton long throw to head it into the path of Odejayi who was able to divert the ball into the net from close range.

Kaine Felix was now getting into his stride as he was constantly running down the right flank with the ball and Leamington FC could not deal with his pace; the Lions’ No 7 won man of the match at the end of the game for his efforts. Felix’s attacking quality resulted in the Lions winning several set-pieces in the first half, but they could not take their chances. And Paul Holleran’s team punished the hosts when an unmarked Murphy netted the equaliser following a deadly counter-attack by the visitors.

Russ O’Neill and Marcus Bignot’s team could count themselves fortunate that no Leamington player was able to get on the end of a ball delivered by Kieran Dunbar which went across the face of goal 8 minutes into the second half.

Leamington FC were starting to find some rhythm as today’s goal scorer for the Brakes must have thought he bagged a second when his shot was looked  to be goal-bound but fortunately for Guiseley AFC Cliff Moyo was able to clear it off the line with about half an hour left on the clock.

As the game entered its final stages, both teams were starting to tire and rely on set-pieces to break the deadlock as Heaton’s long throws into the penalty box became a regular occurrence for Guiseley. By the last 20 minutes the Lions had to defend deeper and Scott Smith was forced to step into the left-back position occasionally to prevent Leamington from taking advantage.

Leamington FC had the final opportunity to get all 3 points when they won a free-kick just outside the box with not long to go, but the Lions’ new loan signing Marcus Dewhurst managed to use his fingertips to push Reece Flanagan’s effort onto the bar and over.

The result means Guiseley have dropped one place to 17th with 28 points from a possible 66, and Leamington FC occupies 12th spot – 7 points off the play-off positions.