Dagenham & Redbridge 3 Guiseley 2

GUISELEY gave up a two-goal lead in their loss at Dagenham & Redbridge to leave them in the National League relegation zone.

It was a difficult defeat for the Lions to take, as they had been on a high since their FA Cup first-round replay win at League Two high-fliers Accrington.

Manager Paul Cox may have been dreaming of putting some distance between his side and the clubs in the bottom four after goals from Lee Molyneux and Mike Fondop in the opening 25 minutes.

Molyneux's opener took a huge deflection to beat Daggers keeper Mark Cousins and the Lions' second was a tap-in from Fondop after a Kevan Hurst header was blocked.

Yet the home side hit back on the half-hour mark through Morgan Ferrier and skipper Scott Doe equalised in first-half stoppage time.

Keeper Jonny Maxted made some good saves in the second period but was eventually beaten when Luke Howell latched on to a rebound and dispatched ten minutes from time.

Guiseley had earned the right to visit Accrington after holding the Football League club to a 0-0 draw at Nethermoor.

They completed the job on penalties and are now looking forward to a second-round tie at Cox's former employers Mansfield.

But Cox wants his players to focus on the league and keeping the Lions in the top tier of non-League football this term is his main aim.

"We started the game very well and I thought in the first 20 to 25 minutes we were excellent," he said.

"We played on the front foot, we looked a real threat and the psychology of the game is such that Dagenham came back and asked questions of us.

"On this occasion – I don't know for whatever reason – we just didn't have the response."

Guiseley had followed the initial goalless draw at home to Accrington with an unfortunate home defeat to Bromley, losing 1-0 to a stoppage-time goal after playing with ten men from the third minute and Maxted saving two penalties.

They also had a man sent off in the cup replay last Tuesday that went to extra time – but while Cox appreciates just what his squad have gone through in recent weeks, he does not want excuses.

"You can look at the whole scenario – we played two tough games before this one, for the majority with ten men – but I expect more from us as a group," he said.

"I thought that our body language was quite submissive in that second half and we never really got out of the blocks. We never really asked questions of Dagenham and ultimately we conceded a third goal which killed us.

"It was disappointing after the euphoria of Tuesday night and I said to the players in the dressing room after this game that if anyone has their mind on the FA Cup, they need to get rid of it straight away.

"This (National League) is our bread and butter, this is our priority, this is my priority and I'm not going to have players who just want to play in the cup because of the razzmatazz and the bright lights."