Monday 26th August 2019. Cherry Red Combined Counties League, Division One.
Godalming Town 2 Walton & Hersham 2.
A Swans’ side showing no fewer than ten changes to their previous starting-line up were somewhat fortunate to hang on for a point at a baking hot Wey Meadow. Many of those changes were enforced, with several players unavailable for a morning kick-off on an August Bank Holiday Monday, and Anderson Pinto-Nogueira was the sole survivor of the side that had started the dismal defeat against Kensington & Ealing Borough two days previously. One of the changes was Logan Cullen, who became Swans’ third goalkeeper in as many league games, and he was one of six players who were either making their first starts of the season, or their debuts. One of the debutants was 17 year old Tyreke Hollingsworth, who was a last minute inclusion, and he was later joined on the pitch by another teenager, 16 year old Gonçalo Freitas, who came on from the subs.’ bench. After going behind to an early goal to a home side who were looking for their first point of the season, Swans gradually settled, and two well-taken goals from the happily fit again Simeon Dennis sent them in at the break in the lead. But after being pulled level straight after the resumption they struggled to create openings, and it was Godalming who looked like coming out on top as they had several chances to grab a winning goal. Cullen was soon brought into action, doing well to tip the ball over his bar when Godalming were allowed to get in a shot from just outside the box. But from the corner on the right the ball was headed down at the far-post, and Joe Lewis scored in-off the crossbar. Dennis just failed to pick out Pinto-Nogueira in the left of the box when he sent in a free-kick, but the home side had a free-kick of their own close to the right corner-flag, and the ball was sent dipping just over the far, top corner. Swans had another free-kick out on the left touchline, and the ball had to be headed behind for a corner when Dennis swung it in. Swans were fortunate not to go further behind when they failed to clear in the right of the box, and Cullen had to make a fine block at the near-post to concede a corner. The equaliser came after 26 minutes when Parish Muirhead crossed a fine ball from the right to find Dennis in the left of the box, and he lashed home a terrific left-foot shot. Godalming had a free-kick in a dangerous spot just outside the box, but after looping up off the wall the ball was pit over the bar from an offside position. Swans went ahead with ten minutes remaining of the half. Dennis and James Robertson combined well on the edge of the penalty area, and when Dennis got into the left of the 6 yard box he drove in a shot that home keeper Jordan Knight half-blocked, but the ball rolled past him and just inside the far-post. Swans had the chance to go 3-1 up and Dennis to complete his hat-trick when he was found in space in the left of the box, but Knight got the slightest of touches to his shot to deflect the ball wide of the near-post. Swans were guilty of not switching on for the second-half, allowing Godalming to equalise after just three minutes. Cullen had to come out and block the ball at the feet of a home player, but it ran to Kenny Kabisante just inside the box, and he drove it into an empty net. Things almost got worse when Francis Sey was allowed to run into the right of the 6 yard box to set up a chance for Kabisante, but he lobbed the ball over the bar. Pinto-Nogueira had an opening for Swans when he made a strong run into the right of the box, but he sent his shot over. Godalming had made a really strong start to the second-half, and the lively Kabisante drove a shot over after cutting across the edge of the box from the left. Richie Mbele then got in a strike from 25 yards that Cullen parried high up to beat the ball down. With just under twenty minutes remaining Swans built up a good move on the left, allowing Roy Gayle to get in a shot from the corner of the box that Knight got well behind. A long ball down the middle by Dennis almost got Freitas in on goal, but keeper Knight was quickly out of his area to head clear. Danger threatened for Swans when Godalming had a free-kick just outside the left corner of the box, but Mohamed Amghar’s effort was poor, and the ball passed harmlessly wide of the near-post. The home side continued to press for a winner, and when Lewis delivered a free-kick from deep on the right, a strong, unchallenged header came in at the far-post, and Cullen did superbly to deflect the ball over his goal. The last five minutes of normal-time, and the lengthy added-on time resulting from water breaks, saw Swans hanging on for a point. Slack play allowed Kabisante to get away down the right to get the ball over to Sey, who shot over. Kabisante then cut in from the right, but shot straight at Cullen, and with five minutes of added-on time played the Swans’ keeper did well to punch the ball away at his near-post when Godalming drove it in low from the right. Swans’ Team: Logan Cullen, Michael Winnister (Gonçalo Freitas 64’), Munashe Mwatsiya (Ryan Smith 83’), Rio Ferguson (Roy Gayle 32’), Hamzah Williams, Parish Muirhead, Anderson Pinto-Nogueira, James Robertson, Simeon Dennis, Tyreke Hollingsworth. Sub. not used: James Young. Scorer: Dennis (26’ & 35’). Godalming Team: Knight, Francis (Da Silva 90+2’), Stow (L. Gadd 78’), Wheeler (Heard 73’), Lewis, Amghar, Bauchop, Mbele, Stevens, Sey, Kasibante. Sub. not used: Hardisty. Scorers: Lewis (4’), Kasibante (48’). Caution: Wheeler. .