Boston United 1-0 Guiseley
By Craig Singleton
Andre Johnson stepped off the bench to score a late winner as Boston United opened the new campaign with three valuable points.
Johnson's 76th minute strike settled a tight encounter against Guiseley at The Jakemans Stadium as two new-look sides went toe-to-toe.
United held the upper hand in terms of chances created, with Adam Marriott denied by an excellent Joe Green save before half-time.
Five players made their full league debuts for the Pilgrims with a sixth, match-winner Johnson, appearing from the bench in the second half.
Chances were at a premium in the first half, with Jonny Margetts’ header flying wide from a deep Andi Thanoj ball into the box.
Green made a crucial stop five minutes before the break when he blocked Marriott’s drive with his head following Nathan Arnold’s cutback from the right.
Guiseley’s Will Hatfield curled a long-range free-kick off target at the end of the half as the sides remained deadlocked at the interval.
United upped the ante after the break, with Thanoj twice going close to the season’s opening goal.
Rowan Liburd’s effort for the Lions deflected wide off Ryan Qualter but United remained on the front foot with sub Johnson motoring away from Andy Halls before the Guiseley defender recovered with a fine covering challenge.
The game’s defining moment arrived with 14 minutes to play when Marriott produced a fine piece of footwork to put JOHNSON into the clear and the substitute beat Green with a fine driven finish.
Guiseley almost mustered an immediate response but Liburd’s flicked header clipped the top of the crossbar on its way over.
The Pilgrims professionally saw out the remainder of the game including five minutes of stoppage time to register their first opening day win since 2014.
Boston (4-4-2): George Willis; Ben Middleton, Ryan Qualter, Spencer Harris, Ashley Jackson; Jonathan Wafula, Brad Abbott, Andi Thanoj, Nathan Arnold (Nicky Walker 90); Jonny Margetts (Andre Johnson 69), Adam Marriott (Grant Roberts 86). Subs (not used): John McCombe, Jordan Gough.
Guiseley (4-3-3): Joe Green; Cliff Moyo, Scott Garner, Andy Halls, Niall Heaton; Alex Purver (Curtis Morrison 80), Kingsley James, Will Hatfield; Rowan Liburd, Paul Clayton (Kayode Odejayi 62), Reece Thompson (Kaine Felix 77). Subs (not used): Jack Dyche, Will Thornton.
Referee: James Bell.
Attendance: 1,231 (67 visitors).