Lions Were Two Minutes From Safety But Two Late Goals Condemn Them To Relegation

Guiseley’s twelve year tenure in the Vanarama National League system came to an end with a 2-1 defeat at Alfreton Town this afternoon which means that Northern Premier League football will be on the menu at Nethermoor next season. Read how a dramatic afternoon ended in the cruelest of ways for the Lions in our match report sponsored by BuildADrive.com.

The Lions went into this game knowing that only a win would suffice if they were to have any chance of avoiding the relegation trapdoor.

The early signs were encouraging as they matched play-off chasing Town for every ball with the best early chance falling to Shaun Tuton, but his header was just over the bar.

John Johnston then whipped in a wicked free kick that George Willis did well to save.

In a scrappy game Matt Rhead was proving a handful for the Guiseley defence in putting a header across the face of Owen Mason’s goal that crept just beyond the far post. He then brought a terrific stop from the young keeper just before the break with a header that seemed to have goal written all over it.

The burly striker headed wide of the mark on the restart and his side had the ball in the back of the net on 51 minutes only for it to be ruled out for offside.

Two minutes later and Rhead was involved once again but this time at the other end where his trip on Andy Hollins resulted in a penalty being awarded to the visitors which Tuton coolly tucked away.

With Telford and Farsley losing Guiseley were now third from bottom of the table and safe as long as the outcomes remained the same but of course football is a ‘funny old game’ as the saying goes and so it proved as Alfreton responded to the setback in aggressive fashion to try and force an equaliser.

Even then Guiseley were not going to give up their advantage easily as Tuton and Kaine Felix both went close.

But inevitably Town got back into the game with Yusifu Ceesay battling away down the right flank and it was his ball cut back across the six-yard box that Lion Conor Branson slotted past Mason to square matters on 88 minutes.

Knowing that only a win would do Hollins was pushed up front to add some presence to the attack as Guiseley went for a second goal.

Inevitably they left gaps at the back and on 90 minutes Ceesay scored a second for Town to consign the Lions to defeat and also end any hopes of staving off relegation.

It would be easy to say that today’s defeat was what consigned the Lions to the drop but Steve Kittrick’s seven game spell in charge has seen the team transformed from a bunch of individuals who looked lost to a unit that had purpose and direction but as with the majority of the season it was all too little, too late.

Images from a dramatic afternoon at North Street  – sort by Oldest to Newest

Attendance: 829

Team: 1. Owen Mason, 2. Regan Hutchinson, 3. George Cantrill, 4. Prince Ekpolo, 5. Lebrun Mbeka, 6. Andy Hollins, 7. John Johnston (90′ Haw), 8. Jamie Spencer (71′ Cartwright), 9. Shaun Tuton (71′ Stones) , 10. Kaine Felix and 11. Thierry Latty-Fairweather.

Subs:: 13. Scott Moloney (GK), 14. Josh Stones, 15. Adam Haw, 16. Ethan Cartwright and 18. Ollie Brown.

Next Up:

3:00 pm
Pre-Season Friendly

Guiseley vs Huddersfield Town