Guernsey Press

Rage turns to delight as GFC win again at Footes Lane

Tony Vance’s mood was changing quicker than the Footes Lane traffic lights on Saturday afternoon – but he ended up a happy man.

Matt Loaring heads home Guernsey FC's opening goal against Thatcham Town and becomes the club's second highest goal-scorer in the process on 93 in all. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 32897142)

Just when it looked as if all Guernsey FC’s hard work of the first 78 minutes against Thatcham Town was perhaps going to count for nothing, they finished with a flourish to earn a 3-1 win and three very valuable points.

The home side had led 1-0 through Matt Loaring, who is now clear as the club’s second highest scorer, and also had the numerical advantage before Dave Merris was given his marching orders for a second bookable offence and within two minutes the visitors were level.

However, Ross Allen and Charlton Gauvain both scored in the final five minutes to brighten their manager’s mood.

‘We nearly threw that one away, didn’t we?’ said Vance.

‘I was raging with seven minutes to go and delighted four minutes later.

‘At 1-0 against 10 men, everyone gets excited when it’s like that, but it’s often the worst thing for some reason and I never understand it. But we were just really nervous, we didn’t put them to bed and obviously Mezz got sent off, then you think “this has gone”, so I was proper sulking at that point.’

That was when his big players really stood up to be counted.

‘Charlton’s the best player in the league and Ross is, in my opinion, the best striker so we’re lucky we’ve got them and Matt Loaring has just been absolutely phenomenal this year,’ Vance said.

‘I don’t want to sort of go and kill his season, but just give him the player of the year trophy now, to be honest. He’s been outstanding.’

The manager also had words of praise for Ben Solway, who made his first home start for GFC alongside captain Jamie Dodd at centre back.

‘Solly’s been training, he got his chance and did really, really well.’

Now there is a quick turnaround for GFC as they host Raynes Park Vale on Wednesday night, but Vance was not going to think about that on Saturday evening.

‘I’ll probably try and enjoy three points here. We’re not out of the woods. I think we’re on 20 points now, and I think we need another 20 – then I’ll relax.’

  • Full match report in Monday’s paper