GUISELEY are two points closer to the National North drop zone after a 2-0 defeat at Brackley Town.

The Lions remain in 19th place and are still immediately above the relegation places. But, as they tumbled to defeat, Ashton United’s 3-0 home victory over Spennymoor Town lifted them to within four points with four games remaining.

Guiseley had lost 3-2 at Spennymoor on Tuesday evening, ending a brief rally as they had taken four points from their previous two games.

The Saints eased past the Lions with goals either side of the interval at St James Park, and gained revenge on their visitors after a 2-1 defeat Nethermooor in October.

Guiseley started well and could have broken the deadlock early on but Will Hatfield headed wide after being picked out by a good cross from Kingsley James.

Michael Fowler was denied by Brackley keeper Danny Lewis but Josh Langley had to make a last-ditch challenge to prevent a certain goal by Lee Ndlovu.

The Saints took the lead in the penultimate minute of the first half when Shane Byrne steered a shot just out of the reach of diving Lions’ keeper Marcus Dewhurst.

The half-time whistle soon followed but only four minutes of playing time separated the goals.

An early second half corner was delivered by Glenn Walker and Saints centre back Connor Hall buried a header into the top corner.

Alex Purver’s 88th-minute header was Guiseley’s first attempt on target in the second half and they were denied a stoppage time consolation strike when an Andy Halls free-kick punctured the wall but was well saved by Lewis.

Lions' joint-manager Marcus Bignot said: “We spoke about it on Tuesday – goals being scored at the wrong time, and there’s been a repeat here.

“We competed really well in the first half and I thought the performance warranted going in at half-time with a 0-0 scoreline. So to concede that goal right on the stroke of half-time never changed the team talk.

"Not in terms of how they applied themselves, how they went about being hard to beat and how they made it difficult for Brackley. Then to come out second half and concede directly from a corner is poor.

“But there’s more to it than that. The way we conceded the corner was hugely disappointing, equally then losing our marker and them getting a free header on goal.

“Let's take away the scorelines – we have competed with two of the sides in the play-offs.

"We haven’t competed enough to get a positive result from either game but our next league game is against Ashton and if my maths is right we’re four points clear, so it’s in our hands.”