Harrad ends Lambs FA Cup dreams
27 October 2007
Gary Mills’ Lambs made the short journey up the A38 to face Nigel Clough’s Blue Sq. Premier Brewers in a crunch FA Cup 4th Round Qualifying tie with potential tie against a league club on offer for the winners.
Craig McAughtrie’s FA Cup injury nightmare continued as he was ruled out of the game with ankle ligament damage, as Mills made just one change to the side that had defeated Hinckley United on Tuesday evening with Nick Wright unable to play due to being cuptied and Anthony Robinson coming into the starting eleven.
For Burton, Jake Edwards (still to score for the Brewers) and John McGrath lined up against their old club.
Both sides came into the game on the back of unbeaten runs – Tamworth going 7 games without defeat while Burton had an impressive 15 game unbeaten record – and one would end when the cup tie was settled..
Tamworth made a bright start forcing the Brewers back into their own half in the opening exchanges showing league standing counts for nothing in the FA Cup.
Both sets of fans flexed their vocal chords to the hilt with their teams kicking at the goals at the opposite end of the field, hopeful that their encouragement would push them down the pitch for an early breakthrough and that their sides name would be on ball 53 when the draw for the next round was made after the game.
The game itself was turning into a bit of a midfield battle with neither being able to get the ball into the area, until the 11th minute when Daryl Clare turned on an Edwards head down and Andy Corbett cushioned pass to fire home at the near post past an unsighted Viega. (0-1)
Chris Nurse picked up the first card of the afternoon following an obstructive challenge on Keith Gilroy .
Then on 18 Saul Deeney stopped Darren Stride’s header, under pressure from Matt Williams, with a fantastic full length save but could not stop Williams netting the equaliser seconds later when the Burton defence failed to deal with Dominic Langdon’s header from Gareth Sheldon’s corner allowing the Lambs striker to fire home from close range – his sixth goal in seven games (1-1)
Gilroy unleashed a right footed 30 yards shot at Veiga on 25 which went straight into the Lambs ‘keepers arms at height and Dave Bampton then picked up a booking for not retreating when asked by the referee from an Albion freekick.
Things settled down a little until on 33 when Stride’s shot took a deflection over the bar for an Albion corner, which Veiga came for and dropped but made amends when the ball moved out to the left wing and the cross came back in.
Williams and Langdon combined in a flowing move resulting in the Lambs defender flashing the ball across the face of goal on 36, but there was no one following in and Burton cleared their lines.
Robinson and Langdon did a similar trick a minute or so later, but the left back was deemed to be offside this time when the ball was played back into his path.
Lambs legs prevented a second Burton goal on 41 when the ball ricocheted around the box before Langdon eventually cleared the danger and move pressure came on 42 when Veiga palmed away Mark Greaves’ header and Tamworth had to play a man short for a short period when Michael Briscoe went off behind the goal but came back on after receiving treatment.
As skies darkened over the Pirelli Tamworth kicked off the second half towards the massed Lambs fans, hoping for a goal like Jon Stevenson’s last season and both teams came off the blocks at a furious pace.
A foul on Williams gave Sheldon a chance to the put the ball in the danger area from the right hand corner flag area but no one could connect. Tamworth kept up the pressure and a foul don Des Lyttle set Sheldon up with another freekick which Adie Smith headed over the bar at the near post after Williams missed his header.
Burton won a corner with some pressure on 56 but a foul on Veiga stopped play and Gilroy sent a teasing ball into the area which Veiga collected on 57.
Shortly afterwards, the ex-Lambs pair of Edwards and McGrath were replaced by another ex-Lamb in Shaun Harrad and Andy Gooding as the Brewers manager looked to fresh legs to spice up his side.
Robinson did well to take the ball past his marker on the right and pull it back for Williams to try a shot but he missed the target.
Brayford struck low flashing his shot across Veiga’s goal and out at the far post on 64, then Marcus Ebdon took the place of Rikki Bains as Mills shuffled the side and Ebdon picked up The Lambs third yellow card of the afternoon just 3 minutes after coming on following a two footed challenge on Greaves.
The Lambs countered a Burton corner to win one of their own on 68 but failed to create a goalscoring chance before Ben Leonard came on for Nurse.
Williams crossed from the left for Ebdon on 70 who was excellently placed in the centre of the area to take a shot at goal, and he did just that but hit Robinson with his effort who was in an offside position.
A flowing Burton move on 72 ended with Harrad firing wide of the near post but once again Tamworth broke to the other end through Ebdon, Lyttle and Langdon who forced a corner on 74 which Deeney collected at full stretch.
Mills made his final throw of the dice on 75 replacing Sheldon with Jake Sheridan who conceded a freekick allowing Burton a 30 yard aim at the target but Aaron Webster’s effort was easy for Veiga.
Substitute Gooding had a similar chance from a more central position on 77 which Leonard headed clear but The Brewers kept the pressure on a Veiga was called into play when Harrad was allowed time to get a header at goal only for the Lambs ’keeper to deflected his shot for a corner.
From the flag kick Burton scored their second of the afternoon. Williams missed his clearance on the edge of the area and Gilroy chipped the ball into the path of Harrad a few yards out who made no mistake on 78 (1-2)
Robinson missed a chance to level the scores three minutes later with a shot on the turn which flew past the far post from the edge of the area.
In the final five minutes Des Lyttle became the fourth Tamworth player to enter the referee’s note book after a foul on Clare gave the home side a freekick 20 yards out in the left channel only for the same player to send the deadball high over the goal.
A half chance fell to substitute Leonard at Tamworth tried hard to get their second equaliser but his shot was stopped and booted clear on 89 and three minutes added time was shown.
A last chance came Tamworth’s way in the final second of the game after Leonard was fouled and won a direct freekick 30 yards out which even brought Veiga up to the half way line. Unfortunately Williams struck the freekick a few feet over the bar and with it the final whistle blew on Tamworth’s involvement in this seasons FA Cup.
Veiga, Lyttle, Bains (Ebdon 64), Briscoe, Smith, Bampton, Langdon, Nurse (Leonard 69), Robinson, Williams, Sheldon
Subs: Sheridan, Burtoft, Donaghey
Deeney, Corbett, Webster, Greaves, James, McGrath (Gooding 58),Stride, Edwards (Harrad 58), Clare (Austin 90), Gilroy, Brayford
Subs: Goodfellow, Taylor
Yellow Cards: Nurse 17, Bampton 27, Ebdon 67, Lyttle 87
Referee: Mr. M. Matadar