Godalming Town 2 Leatherhead 0

The new Tanners management team went into their first game in charge facing an in-form Godalming side hovering just outside the play-off places.

Bob Langford brought in Billy Marshall as part of the strike force in place of the suspended Tom Hutchings, while new signing Chris Lewington made his first start for the Mole Valley side in goal after signing from Fisher Athletic.

In the defence, Ryan Gray returned on the right side.

Overall, this was a disappointing game with neither side moving the ball particularly well and a swirling wind not helping either side’s distribution.

Despite giving away an early corner, the Tanners came into the game with some purpose and Marshall did well to squirm his way through only to see his effort blocked.

Despite getting into some promising positions, the final ball, too often, found its way into the safe hands of the Godalming goalkeeper, Rodney Chiweshe.

Godalming striker Kenny Ojukwu has been in effective scoring form of late but he was well marshalled by a tight defensive first-half performance by the Tanners back four (he was eventually replaced late in the game as part of a triple substitution).

In truth, this was a scrappy first half in which the Tanners shaded it against a home side who found debutant goalkeeper Lewington in commanding form.

Up front, in addition to the running of Marshall, Jason Henry, playing wide on the left, caused the home defence real problems with his close control and pace.

It was a strange feature of the match that this, probably the smallest player on the park, won more than his fair share of aerial ball against a much taller defence.

Leatherhead did have their chances but when the ball was played into the danger area, either the home keeper was on hand to gather safely or the heading ability of Will Jenkins was not enough to find the target.

For the travelling fans looking for an immediate result from the newly appointed management team, it was a frustrating but somehow understandable afternoon.

If Leatherhead shaded the first half, they were distinctly off the boil in the second.

Godalming certainly had the better of the possession but, with Ojukwu firing blanks, they did not look like scoring. Leatherhead started to go back to their old ways of wayward passing and, with Tony Cuff gaining a yellow card for lunging into a midfield challenge, the Tanners looked like a team on the back foot.

With the game heading for a draw, Godalming made the triple substitution that was to change the game – albeit with some help from a profligate defence.

Of the three, Glen Stanley was to have the most effect on the game albeit with some assistance from the visiting side.

With just 20 minutes left on the clock, Lewington’s debut went from satisfactory to unfortunate.

A punted clearance bounced on the edge of the penalty area and, with no Tanners defender nearby and a home forward bearing down on him, the young stopper went for a difficult low catch.

The ball squirmed under his body and Stanley was on hand to roll the ball into an empty net.

This spurred the Tanners into greater activity but they were unable to penetrate the home defence.

True, they could have had a penalty when Marshall was shoved in the back at the near post but the kick wasn’t given and the chance went begging.

Godalming’s second was the product of some loose play from the Tanners.

Gray had time to clear but no outlet with Marshall not giving him the angle to play it wide.

When the chance did come, the attempted pass was charged down and a low cross found Lewington horribly exposed and Stanley with another straightforward chance.

It was a disappointing afternoon but one that will have given Langford some real food for thought.

Tanners: Lewington, Palmer, Hendry, Cartledge, Gray, Holmes, Henry, Cole-Bolt (Robinson), Jenkins, Marshall, Cuff (Jones).