Return to News Page


Vanarama National League North match
played on Saturday, 11 January 2020 at 3pm


Altrincham's run of successive victories ended at the sixth hurdle when a well-organised Guiseley held them to a draw. Alty's early flow was disrupted as they lost two players to injury inside the first twenty-five minutes, neither of them seeming to be contact injuries.

Having already had attention to his back, Tom Hannigan was replaced by James Jones (25 mins). Earlier Simon Richman had been replaced by Sean Williams for an apparent hamstring injury (14 mins). However, just after Richman's substitution, Altrincham took the lead. A clever turn by Hancock led to a blocked cross from the number ten before his second attempt, from the right, found Tom Peers, who fired a low shot into the net (15 mins).

Altrincham looked fairly comfortable with their lead until Felix fired home a fine equalizer from the edge of the box as Williams was unable to close him down (33 mins). Five minutes before the interval Williams was felled on the byline, right of goal, but Hancock hit the resulting penalty too centrally and Dewhurst's trailing foot kept the spot-kick out.

Alty had several chances in the second half to convert their possession into the winner but Johnston could not turn in a low cross from his position at the back post, virtually under the cross bar, and another Alty effort was cleared off the line. Then, with the final act of the game, Moult headed a Johnston freekick straight at Dewhurst.

The Lions had their moments too with ex-Alty loanee Chris Sang striking the crossbar in the second half and Alty having to clear an effort off the line in the first period.

The point lifted Altrincham into the play-offs, in sixth position.


REFEREE: Mr John Matthews

Sean Williams had missed the previous three games through injury but was named on the subs' bench in place of the suspended Max Harrop, whose appeal against his red card had been unsuccessful. Otherwise, Alty were unchanged.

Guiseley included two former Alty loanees in the shape of midfielder Andrai Jones and striker Chris Sang.


ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks): 1. Tony THOMPSON, 2. Shaun DENSMORE, 3. Andy WHITE, 4. Toby MULLARKEY, 5. Tom HANNIGAN, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 7. John JOHNSTON, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 9. Jordan HULME, 10. Josh HANCOCK, 11. Tom PEERS. Subs: 12. Luke WALL, 14. Ethan WALKER, 15. Connor HAMPSON, 16. James JONES, 17. Sean WILLIAMS.

GUISELEY (Yellow shirts, navy shorts and socks) 1. Marcus Dewhurst, 2. Reiss McNally, 3. Bradley Nicholson, 4. Andrai Jones, 5. Hamza Bencherif (c), 6. Kennedy Digie, 7. Kaine Felix, 8. George Cantrill, 9. Chris Sang, 10. Aran Soleman, 11. Gabriel Johnson. Subs: 12. Harrison Sheppeard, 14. Dylan Barkers, 15. Lee Shaw, 16. Prince Ekpolo, 17. Nathan Newall.


Guiseley held Alty to a 1-1 draw at Nethermoor in October. Both sides were in form; Guiseley were unbeaten in their last five away fixtures whilst Altrincham had won all five of their most recent games.

The late Mike Garnett's records reveal the history of games between the clubs:


Guiseley won the toss and elected to change ends, so Alty kicked off towards the Golf Road end on a dull and breezy afternoon. Digie brought down Hancock to give Alty an early freekick which was taken disappointingly by Johnston and easily cleared by the first defender.

The first goal threat was at the other end as Felix got the better of White but his low shot went just wide of Thompson's right upright (5 mins). Alty responded with a neat move before Hancock was again upended and, this time, the offender Soleman was booked (9 mins).

But before the freekick could be taken Hannigan sat down for treatment to his back which took some time, before he rose to his feet and resumed the game after the mandatory trip to the touchline (11 mins). After an error by White, Felix now got past Hannigan who conceded a freekick, which was cleared (12 mins).

Now, like Hannigan, Simon Richman went down off the ball for treatment and, after this, he was replaced by Sean Williams (14 mins). It was apparently a hamstring problem for the substituted midfielder.

Despite these two disruptions, it was Altrincham who took the lead a minute later. The goal's architect was Hancock who, after a smart turn, got in a low cross from the right byline, after his first attempt had been blocked. Peers lashed the ball into the keeper's bottom right-hand corner to make it 1-0 (15 mins).

An Alty corner soon followed before a fairly uneventful spell which was terminated by Bencherif's crude aerial foul on Johnston which earned the visitors' captain a booking (23 mins).

Play continued in low-key fashion through the half-hour mark with Alty then putting together a fine move, which culminated in Hancock shooting narrowly wide (32 mins).

But, against the run of play, Guiseley equalised when their former BPA man, Felix, drifted to the left just outside the box. Williams was unable to close him down before Felix hit a fine curling shot into the corner of the net, to the diving Thompson's right (33 mins).

Soon afterwards Sang fired well wide (37 mins) as the visitors enjoyed a better spell. Sang then tried an audacious forty-yard effort, on the half-volley, which the diving Thompson saved (39 mins).

After a good passing move by Alty had been terminated, Williams got to the byline, right of goal where he was bundled over and a penalty was awarded.

Guiseley created a crowd scene in protest and the kick was delayed. When it was finally taken, Hancock hit it too centrally and, Dewhurst who had dived to his right, kept it out with his trailing foot (41 mins).

Guiseley had another fortunate escape before the interval when Dewhurst picked up the ball that had been played back to him by a team-mate. The referee did not view it as a back-pass, to Alty's consternation (44 mins).

In the three added minutes White conceded a freekick against Cantrill, from which Bencherif headed wide (45+1 mins). In the third added minute a Guiseley attack up the left led to a goalmouth melee in which Densmore had to clear off the Alty goal-line.

Half-time arrived with Guiseley denied time to take a corner, so the score remained 1-1.


After Guiseley had kicked off, they won an early corner which was poorly taken. Play was scrappy with the visitors shading things in the early stages of the half. James Jones then became the first Alty man to be booked, for a fairly unexceptional foul (53 mins).

A Guiseley corner came to nothing but, in a subsequent counter-attack, Guiseley struck the top of the bar from a Sang shot (56 mins).

Alty made their final change as Wall replaced Peers (59 mins). On the right wing, Wall was soon making an impression.

Next, an Alty short corner routine failed (63 mins) before Densmore won another flag-kick (67 mins). This time the corner prompted a goalmouth melee and a Guiseley clearance off the line. However, in the aftermath, Moult was booked for some offence or other (68 mins).

From the above melee, Soleman needed treatment before limping off to be replaced by Sheppeard (70 mins). Soon after this Alty had a great chance to score when Moult's low cross from the right was diverted over the bar from almost point-blank range at the back post, by the incoming Johnston (72 mins).

Alty were having the better of things before a Hulme shot was fumbled by Dewhurst but he recovered the ball (78 mins). Johnston was then penalized and booked for an offence which was not very clear (82 mins) and, barely a minute later, Wall was also booked, the substitute having "to take one for the team" after a mispass from a team-mate.

Referee Matthews made it three yellow cards in as many minutes as he cautioned Andrai Jones for taking out Williams with a poor challenge (85 mins).

Rain now began to fall as the game drifted toward the ninety-minute mark. In the decreed four added minutes Johnston was unable to beat Dewhurst from a tight angle, right of goal (90+1 mins) before the visitors won a corner.

Alty responded with three injury-time corners in succession and they then won a freekick on the left, some 35 yards out. Johnston's excellent freekick found Moult unmarked but the Alty captain's firm header was unfortunately directed straight at Dewhurst and Alty had to settle for a point (90+5 mins).

So, a run of five successive victories came to an end against a well-organized Guiseley team. Nevertheless, the point earned lifted Alty a further three places to sixth, with games in hand on three of the five clubs above them, in advance of a difficult week which sees two long trips, to Spennymoor and to Gateshead.