Sat Aug 25, 2012 @ The New Defence
Horley Town 1 - 1 Leatherhead
Horley will probably feel a little disappointed that they didnt convert significant second half pressure into a lucrative win. But an equally lucrative trip to Leatherhead for the replay on Wednesday will be a just reward for a sterling second half display.
Horley started with a testing 442, with Dave Brown pushing on alongside Adam Pullen up front. And the opening exchanges were fairly balanced. Leatherhead had 3 corners in quick succession but strong Horley defence saw them off. Horley took their turn to put some pressure on, forcing a corner. When the ball finally broke to John Eldred on the right, his deep cross actually hit the bar and bounced clear.
But the loss of Pullen after 17 mins gave Ali Rennie a headache he didn't need. He chose to replace Pullen with 18 year old Michael Constable. The Horley crowd were further worried when Tom Winsor ended up on the deck from a clash of heads, but fortunately he was fine after treatment.
Horley finished off the first half the strongest, with an on-target John Eldred shot in injury time forcing a save from the Leatherhead keeper. Horley went off the field smiling at 0-0.
From the start of the second half, it was obvious that Leatherhead had the hairdryer treatment at halftime and they put a lot of pressure on. But Horley stood strong, with skipper Guscott leading the line, and the back four all put their bodies on the line blocking numerous Leatherhead shots.
But having weathered the storm, Horley started to push forward and created a few chances, as Ben Herdman broke up the Leatherhead attacks in midfield, Eldred and Rollinson were picking up the loose ball and spreading it wide to push on. But despite a possible handball in the Leatherhead box, Horley were unable to convert pressure into scores.
Leroy Hyett came on for Constable and he set about giving the Leatherhead defence a hard time. A free kick for Horley just inside the Leatherhead half was taken by Weller across the box, where Eldred controlled and managed to get a cross in. Any number of heads on ball sent it out to the edge of the box where Rollison volleyed wide.
Two more Horley corners followed, but despite the pressure no goals came. Hyatt broke clear down the right, but could only shoot wide.
And against the run of play, Leatherhead managed to force the ball across the line. Many of the crowd were sure it hadn't crossed the line but the lino was sure and the goal was given.
But almost immediately Horley went up the other end and Hyatt played Brown through very neatly and he was quick enough and calm enough to round the keeper and slot it into the empty net.
The remaining 5 minutes plus injury time were quite even, with both sides pushing on for the winner, but it finished 1-1, with everyone preparing for the replay on Wednesday back at Fetcham Grove.
Team: Chatfield, A Jupp, Weller, Winser, Guscott, Herdman, Harris, Pollinson, Pullen, Eldred, Brown
Substitutes: Hyatt, Poplett, Turner, Constable, McGuigan (GK)