Vanarama National League: Maidstone United 1 Guiseley 1

A STOPPAGE-time penalty earned Guiseley a point from their trip to Maidstone United but it still leaves the Lions in the Vanarama National League relegation zone.

After a trip to Berkshire last weekend, another long journey - this time to Kent - was not ideal for Paul Cox’s men.

However, the Lions put back-to-back losses behind them, following a defeat at Maidenhead United the previous Saturday and a home reverse against leaders Macclesfield Town in midweek.

Substitute Frank Mulhern’s spot-kick, after a foul by the home side’s Reece Prestedge two minutes into time added on, banked the visitors a point that their manager believed was the least that they deserved.

They had trailed since the 12th minute when the Stones’ former Bantam Zavon Hines intercepted a pass and rounded Lions keeper Jonny Maxted to score.

Home keeper Lee Worgan had made an earlier save to prevent Guiseley striker Michael Fondop from breaking the deadlock.

Lions centre back Rob Atkinson was close to restoring parity in the first half with a shot that was tipped round a post and a later header that went over the target.

Stones keeper Worgan saved another header from the big defender in the second half before Atkinson was forced off through injury around the hour mark.

Hines missed a glorious opportunity to double the home side’s lead late in the second half, and they were left to rue that as Mulhern, who was on for Kayode Odejayi, netted his first goal for the Lions.

Cox said: “I think looking at the whole game, Maxted has not a shot to save, apart from the one that went in.

“The positives are that we kept going and probably could have been 2-0 up inside ten minutes. There are still the questions about that final third in our box and in their box – the amount of knock downs in there – I expected a bit more.

“But we shoot ourselves in the foot. I thought we were in total command of the game in the early parts but our decision-making in the midfield third: we’ve got bogged down and all of a sudden the ball’s in our net without anyone really creating against us.

“So, looking back over the seven games (since Cox succeeded Adam Lockwood) there’s a common theme going and that’s our concentration levels in key moments of the game.

“If we’d done that in this game, we come away with a win. I know that people will say we scored from a penalty but we deserved that penalty because the one on (Simon) Lenighan in the first half (that wasn’t given) was blatant.

“I try to get across to the boys to gamble in that final third - it’s a goal-scorers’ heaven in there, and we need to add that little bit in there. We are looking quite a solid side at the minute and it’s a bit frustrating that we haven’t got the three points.

“But the lads worked extremely hard, and I think a point is the least we deserved.”