Ayres says Flackwell Heath had no time to react to 'killer blow' in FA Vase

Matthew Ayres second half free kick flies over the bar


In a classic game of two halves, Flackwell Heath were knocked out of the FA Vase by Guildford City on Saturday, conceding in the 90th minute following an error of judgement from goalkeeper Isaac Hay.

Guildford were defensively solid throughout, hardly allowing the likes of Fabian Driffill and Ashley Howell a kick, and they'll feel they edged the contest and deserve their place in today's (Monday) third round draw.

Flackwell boss Chris Ayres had a differing opinion and, had it been a boxing match, the hosts would have been ahead on points at the half-time interval.

But City grew in confidence as the game wore on, increasingly squeezed the life from Flackwell's attacking play, and were pushing for a winning goal in the last 15 minutes.

It eventually arrived in the 90th minute when Hay was drawn out of his area to clear a ball over the top, got tangled up with a couple of defenders looking to do the same and Jordan Adeyemi stole in to sweep home the winner.

“I thought first half we were the better side,” said Ayres.

“We didn't get the goal our play deserved and second half they came back into it to be fair.

“It's a shame it was a goal from our error. The goalkeeper, Isaac (Hay), made a decision and it didn't work out.

“It was just a shame we didn't have any time to react to it, it was the 90th minute and it was a killer blow.”

It's a shame for Hay that his error led to Guildford snatching a late winner, just when it seemed the game would go to penalties. He's been the hosts' outstanding player in the second half, pulling off a string of great saves to keep them on level terms.

“He made two fantastic saves in the second half,” said Ayres.

“As a striker, if you miss a chance sometimes it doesn't cost you the game, but when a goalkeeper makes a mistake like that it costs you.

“But he's a young player, he'll learn from it and come back a better player.

“We got in some good positions, but we lacked a bit of creativity in the final third really.

“We had a couple of half chances when we didn’t get our shots away, but that’s cup football and we didn’t have enough time to respond.

“Their skipper (Antonio Simeone) is very strong. A good player who’s played at a higher level you can see that.

“It was tough. Fabian (Driffill) wasn’t quite right today, he had a dead leg in training and he’s our key man, when he’s doing things right, he stretches the defence.

The goal came so late Flackwell had little time to respond, but Ayres is now looking for a response from his players as they look ahead to next Saturday's league game against New Salamis.

Having won six of their opening seven matches prior to Saturday, the Heathens have been slowly climbing the Spartan South Midlands Premier Division table to eighth.

Fourth placed New Salamis are one of the league's form sides, however, having won 10 of their 14 matches so far.

“We'll see what the response is from the boys,” he added.

“We’ve got a good group and it’s our first defeat since Risborough Rangers, both 1-0 defeats.

“In both games we maybe didn’t deserve to lose them, but that’s football.

“We dust ourselves down and we’ve got a tough game next against New Salamis.

“We’ve got a couple coming back next week and our left centre half James Keeley was cup tied today so we missed him but hopefully we can bounce back straight away.”

Leave your comment

Share your opinions on

Characters left: 1500

Editor's Picks

Most read

Top Articles