St Neots Town FC 1 : 1 AFC Sudbury
Match
FAT 3QR
St Neots Town FC 1 : 1
AFC Sudbury
Saturday 29 November, 2014 15:00

FA Trophy Third Qualifying Round

 

ST NEOTS TOWN        1        AFC SUDBURY       1   

 

            Most of the action and all of the real drama came in the final fifteen minutes of this FA Trophy third qualifying round tie. Sudbury appeared to set their stall out from the start with a replay in mind but they must have thought they had snatched a winner when Ed Adjei was sent off thirteen minutes from time and four minutes later Ollie Berquez put them in front.  

                        Thisgalvanised St Neots and in a storming finish they snatched a direct free kick equaliser in added time to earn a midweek replay. However with Jay Davies picking up an unnecessary booking – his fifth of the season – St Neots will be without both Adjei and Davies if they feature in the next round which is amongst the last 64 teams in the competition.  

            There were two team changes with Matt Spring returning in midfield for the unavailable Dean Cracknell and Max York preferred to Dave Deeney in defence.   The match had begun with the stadium standing in a respectful one minute’s silence to honour the outstanding contribution to the Club of former player and Manager Jack Blyth who had died earlier in the month.

            With Sudbury operating a rigid 4-5-1 formation with Terry Rymer playing a lone role in attack there was lots of early play in midfield although both sides each spurned an early chance.  Paul Bastock held on to an early header from Ryan Henshaw in Sudbury’s first attack and then after three minutes Ben Ford looking off balance sent a snap shot wide from ten yards after good work by Chris Dillon and Lewis Hilliard. Those early chances apart there was little to report in the way of goalmouth action although Correy Davidson only just failed to reach a Ben Robinson cross at one end and Dillon had a net bound shot beaten down by Henshaw at the other. Sudbury’s main threat came from long throw expert Jack Wilkinson who kept the St Neots defence on their toes and before half time injuries to Davidson and James Baker forced the visitors into to two early substitutions. Matt Spring saw a free kick allegedly blocked by a defenders arm but penalty appeals were ignored and St Neots almost snatched the lead five minutes before the break when Ben Ford produced a stunning 30 yards volley that was pushed away by the surprised visiting goalkeeper.

            A half time summing up was that St Neots had enjoyed the greater possession but Sudbury had looked more composed and creative in attack and St Neots once again lacked quality in their passing particularly in the final third of the field. Recent signing Tom Ward was close to registering his first goal for the club with a header just wide of goal after good approach work by Matt Spring and Ben Ford and then Ford took a neat return pass to bring a good save from Marcus Garnham.    The hard working Drew Roberts had a shot blocked and a second pushed away at full stretch by Garnham but St Neots sent on substitutes Lorenzo Ferrari and Ben Mackey in a bid to increase their impetus.

            Then as the tempo increased Ed Adjei uncharacteristically seemed to raise his hand to Kris Newby after a late and dangerous tackle and was sent off after 77 minutes with the Sudbury player getting away with a booking.  

            With St Neots looking disjointed Sudbury took full advantage and four minutes later substitute Lee Flynn crossed from the left, Henshaw headed the ball back across goal and Ollie Berquez rapped it home from ten yards.  

            Sudbury retreated into complete defence with Ryan Frater and substitute Ben Mackey going close but that late Matt Spring free kick – his first goal for St Neots – earned the midweek re-run at Sudbury.

 

St Neots: Bastock, York, Adjei, Ford, Frater (R), Ward, Davies, Spring, Dillon, Roberts, Hilliard

Subs: Ferrari (for Ford 61), Mackey (for Dillon 70), Nolan (for Frater 87), Hoyte and Deeney.

Cards:  Adjei (RED – 77), Davies (Y – 81)

Goal:  Spring (90 + 3 mins)

 

Sudbury:  Garnham, Robinson, Wilkinson, Davidson, Henshaw, Pope, Newby, Clarke, Baker, Rymer, Berquez

Subs:   Kemp (for Davidson 20), Guyton (for Baker 35), Flynn (for Kemp 73), Coley and Blackwell.

Cards:  Newby (Y – 77), Henshall (Y – 90 +2)

Goal:  Berquez (81 mins)

 

Attendance: 431

 

Referee: Shaun Barry (Northampton)

 

John Walker