AFC Sudbury 1 : 0 St Neots Town FC
FAT 3QR Replay
AFC Sudbury 1 : 0
St Neots Town FC
Tuesday 02 December, 2014 19:45

FA Trophy Third Qualifying Round Replay


AFC SUDBURY       1           ST NEOTS TOWN        0       


Just three minutes after half time Sudbury midfielder Lawrence Yiga produced a stunning shot from fully 35 yards out to bend the ball into the top corner of the net past a helpless Paul Bastock to signal the end of St Neots’ FA Trophy adventure this season. It was a goal worthy to win any football match and it came early enough for St Neots to mount a counter attack in an attempt to win their way to a First Round proper date at Conference South club Braintree on Saturday week. However, despite their best efforts, they were unable to penetrate a stubborn home defence who had to rely on good fortune to maintain their clean sheet so it is Sudbury who will make the short trip to Braintree in ten days time.  

            Manager Gary King had tried to freshen up his side after the Saturday Cozy Stadium stalemate bringing in Ben Mackey for Chris Dillon for his first start since rejoining the club, Lorenzo Ferrari for dedicated width in attack for Lewis Hilliard and Dean Cracknell for Jay Davies in a strengthened midfield. Despite an arguably better all round performance, the side was unable to produce the finish that might have seen them through so it is now back to concentrate on boosting their flagging fortunes in their league programme with three more home games before Christmas.

            It was a very different match from the first whistle with Sudbury understandably prepared to commit more players forward so an open game ensued.   St Neots produced the first two chances with home keeper Marcus Garnham having to sprint from his line to smother the ball at the feet of Drew Roberts and then Lorenzo Ferrari shot wide from a Roberts cross. At the other end after seven minutes Paul Bastock had to be alert to tip the ball over the bar from a dipping Jack Wilkinson shot but incredibly that was to be the visiting keepers’ only serious save of the match.   Ben Mackey looking sharp and hungry for the ball had a shot deflected for a corner and then Ben Ford in full flight towards goal was cynically hacked down by Ryan Henshaw to deservedly earn the defender a yellow card. The resultant Matt Spring free kick from a similar distance to his Saturday goal was only just too high and after half an hour a snap shot from Mackey was pushed onto a post at full stretch by Garnham.  

            With St Neots looking much the better side a Max York header from a Spring corner struck the outside of a post and although Terry Rymer did get the ball in the net for Sudbury he had been flagged offside with the St Neots defence already preparing for the free kick.

            A first half pull suffered by Ryan Frater saw him fail to reappear after the interval so Gavin Hoyte came on in defence alongside the reliable Tom Ward for his first appearance in three matches but the early second half Sudbury goal brought an immediate St Neots response as Ben Mackey headed home  a Ferrari cross but was ruled fractionally offside. The same player then had a shot blocked and from an Ed Adjei cross Drew Roberts brought a full length save from Garnham. St Neots then sought to build on their superior possession sending on Lewis Hilliard for Ben Ford and adopting a 4-3-3 formation. Henshaw did well to head acrobatically off the line from a cleverly placed Roberts shot with his keeper beaten and in the frustrating last fifteen minutes the home side did everything they could to waste time.  

            With ten players behind the ball when St Neots attacked they were able to repel the better moves and when they did get the ball they seemed more keen to get towards the opposing corner flags than towards the goal. Substitute Jay Davies had another effort cleared off the line and in the time added for the time wasting St Neots final chance fell to Mackey but when he looked certain to score a last ditch tackle blocked St Neots of another late goal they probably deserved.


St Neots: Bastock, York, Adjei, Ford, Frater (R), Ward, Cracknell, Spring, Mackey, Roberts, Ferrari

Subs: Hoyte (for Frater 46), Hilliard (for Ford 58), Davies (for York 73), Dillon and Nolan.

Cards:  Ferrari (Y – 90 + 1 min)

Goal:  none


Sudbury:  Garnham, Robinson, Wilkinson, Flynn, Henshaw, Pope, Blackwell, Clarke, Rymer, Yiga, Berquez

Subs:  Guyton (for Berquez 60), Kemp (for Blackwell 76), Ray (for Rymer 88), Coley and Kerridge.

Cards:  Henshall (Y – 21), Yiga (Y – 47),

Goal:  Yiga (48 mins)


Attendance: 229


Referee: Wade Norcott (Harlow)


John Walker