Three and easy for visitors
2:41pm, Fri 27th Dec 2013
Woking 1 Salisbury City 3
The Skrill Premier
26th December 2013
There was little festive cheer at Kingfield on Boxing Day as the Cards slumped to a 1-3 defeat at the hands of Salisbury City. Gary Hill made one change from the away win at Nuneaton the previous Saturday with Brett Johnson coming in to replace Mike Cestor, who dropped to the bench.
In a tight match with few clear goal-scoring opportunities, it was the away side who first showed an attacking threat. A long ball over the top of the Cards' back four found Ricky Wellard, who stayed onside but could only slice over. Moments later Clovis Kamjdo, running down the left cut inside onto his right foot and forced Sam Beasant into a good save.
It was Beasant who then turned from goal-stopper to goal-provider as his goal-kick found Scott Rendell, whose flick on expertly found the path of player of the month Jack Marriott, who brought the ball down under control using his head and slid it under the on-rushing 'keeper to put the Cards a goal up on 14 minutes.
The lead lasted just 3 minutes after good work by the lively Kamdjo eventually saw him centre for Chris McPhee who slid inside the six-yard box to equalise.
Midway through the first half, Salisbury found themselves in front after some poor defending by the Cards. A hopeful high ball into the box was not dealt with by Beasant who was unable to get clear contact on his punch. The ball fell to opening goalscorer McPhee who showed good composure to calmly lay the ball to Wellard who took a couple of touches before firing into the top corner despite desperate dives from the Woking defenders.
Woking searched for the equaliser but failed to carve out any clear-cut openings - which would become the story of the day for Gary Hill’s men. On 32 minutes, Kevin Betsy found Josh Payne whose powerful drive could only find the back of the Kingfield Road End. 3 minutes before half-time, good link-up play once again between the front two saw Rendell square a low ball to Marriott whose drilled effort was saved by the 'keeper to his right to end a disappointing opening 45 minutes for the Cards.
Half-time: Woking 1 Salisbury City 2
The Cards were sent out early for the second half but it was Salisbury who started the stronger and almost extended their lead. A deep free-kick was met by Glenn Wilson whose cushioned header found Theo Lewis who headed onto the bar from inside the 6 yard box and kept Woking in the contest.
Salisbury continued to press for the goal to give themselves some daylight on a chilly afternoon at Kingfield. They may well have got it on the hour mark had not Beasant’s left- hand post denied Angus MacDonald from a corner. Minutes later, goalscorer Wellard found himself in space once more but could only flash his shot wide.
The Cards responded with a cross from the right as Payne picked out Rendell but he could only direct his header harmlessly into the 'keeper's arms.
With just under 15 minutes remaining, the away side had another opportunity to kill the game with a darting run by Wellard which was kept out by Beasant and cleared to safety from inside the six-yard box.
Woking rallied late on and had their best period of the match in the last 10 minutes. Betsy met John Goddard’s corner but could only head wide and moments later Giuseppe Sole saw his free kick clear the bar. The Cards continued to struggle to create a clear-cut opportunity to find the equaliser and this was summed up as substitute Mike Cestor’s cross-cum-shot provided the closet chance for the home side to snatch a draw as the ball went agonisingly wide of the far post.
The visitors scored their third and took all three points in the 94th minute when substitute Harvey latched onto an inviting pass from Kamdjo to beat Beasant at his near post with a fierce strike.
The result leaves the Cards sitting in 16th place, the hectic schedule over the festive period giving them the opportunity to respond to the setback in 48 hours time away at Dartford on Saturday.
Woking: Sam Beasant, Mark Ricketts, Joe McNerney, Brett Johnson (Mike Cestor 65), John Nutter (Giuseppe Sole 65), Kevin Betsy, Kieran Murtagh, Josh Payne, Charles Banya (John Goddard 69) , Jack Marriott, Scott Rendell
Unused subs: Andy Little, Adam Newton
Goal: Jack Marriott 14
Cautions: Kieran Murtagh 35, Scott Rendell 90
Salisbury City: Will Puddy, Callum Hart (Tyler Harvey 45), Ryan Brett, James Clarke, Glenn WIlson, Chris McPhee, Ricky Wellard, Theo Lewis, Clovis Kamdjo, Stuart Sinclair, Angus MacDonald (Warren Feeney 78)
Unused subs: James Bittner, Jamie White, Ben Wright
Goals: Chris McPhee 17, Ricky Wellard 26, Tyler Harvey 90
Caution: Angus MacDonald 67
Sponsor's MOTM: Joe McNerney,