REPORT: SHILDON 1-0 GUISBOROUGH TOWN
Shildon maintained their 100% start to the league season with a single goal win over the only other remaining team in the league with a perfect record.
Paul Connor wiped out Guisborough’s unbeaten start with the goal’s only game on the hour mark after Matty Robson chased an almost lost cause to swing over a first time cross which was swept home from 18 yards by the experienced striker.
Shildon, who hit the woodwork three times in the game, deserved their win, but were made to work hard by a Guisborough side who are likely to remain title contenders throughout the season.
Daniel Moore was the first to be denied by the frame of the goal when his early left foot effort from 20 yards beat the keeper but crashed off the junction of post and bar.
Fifteen minutes later, Paul Connor raced on to a through ball but Guisborough keeper, Nick Liversedge’s fingertips directed Connor’s lob onto the underside of the bar and back into the goalie’s hands.
The game was played at pace and raced from end to end with the visitors making a number of chances themselves. Leon Carling directed a header over the bar before Curtis Round’s left foot strike from ten yards sailed over the top.
Steven Snaith then produced an excellent stop from Lewis Graham who denied the midfielder with a lunging save to palm a shot from distance past the post.
The second half followed a similar pattern with both sides intent on playing attacking football at pace, and it was the visitors who almost broke the deadlock when a Danny Earl shot beat the outstretched arm of Graham, only to find Gary Brown protecting the line with a last ditch clearance.
The game’s most controversial moment arrived just before the hour when a through ball evaded Carling and found Paul Connor with just the keeper to beat. The centre back stretched out a leg to bring the forward crashing to the ground and was fortunate to see the referee produced just a yellow card.
Moments later, on 61 minutes, Shildon made the breakthrough when Matty Robson chased down a long diagonal ball from Lewis Wing to swing a high cross to the back of the penalty area where Connor this time found the target with a sweeping left foot shot past the keeper’s despairing dive.
Shildon had to endure spells of Guisborough pressure for the final half hour, but Lewis Graham was intent on keeping his clean sheet record intact. Not only do Shildon have a 100% win record, but the side has yet to concede a goal in the league this season.
With time running out and after another diving stop by Graham, Shildon broke forward and this time it was Matty Robson’s turn to hold his head in his hands as a 25 yard strike beat Liversedge but not the woodwork, the shot thumping against the base of the keeper’s left hand post.
Shildon held out to maintain their perfect start after a highly entertaining, hard fought win against an excellent Guisborough side and finished the evening top of the league with a maximum 12 points from their opening four fixtures. The outcome may well be reviewed in the latter stages of the campaign as one of the Railwaymen’s most important wins of the season.
FINAL SCORE: Shildon 1-0 Guisborough.
SHILDON: Graham, Groves, Robson, Moore, Brown, Jones, Wing (Greulich-Smith), Davis, Connor (Fryatt), Doninger (Hudson), Hodgson. Subs not used: Rae, Ellison.
GUISBOROUGH: Liversedge, Roddam, McWilliams, Carling, May, McPhillips, Snaith, Round, Earl, Bythway, Helm. SUBS: Bulmer, Steel, Bettson, Blake, Dixon