Lambs are Wylde about Worcester victory
27 September 2008The Lambs embarked once again on the FA Cup trail, travelling the short distance to Richard Dryden’s Worcester City, looking to continue the unbeaten eight match run in this 2nd Qualifying Round tie. Tamworth had beaten City at this stage of the competition last season and fans were also remembering the 3-3 draw at St. Georges Lane when Dave Bampton, who featured now for City along with other ex-Lambs Graham Ward and Avun Jephcott, was replaced in the warm up by Jake Sheridan who scored two early goals before the home side fought back in the last 5 minutes of the game.
With Will Puddy unavailable boss Gary Mills brought in Villa keeper David Bevan on loan and with seven subs being available for FA Cup ties this season Mills had plenty of options but opted to field an otherwise unchanged outfield from the 4-0 win away at Blyth Spartans last Saturday.
City kicked off the game towards the Lambs fans at the canal end of the ground and immediately put the ball out of play giving Tamworth possession.
A long freekick from Lyttle fell to Rodman who tried a one two with Pritchard but the latter’s snap shot went out for a throw on the far side and Bevan got his first touch when the ball was sent up field.
Lyttle put an inch perfect right wing cross onto the head of Pritchard on 3, but his header was just too strong and hit the top of the netting.
As at Blyth, Tamworth were taking the game to their hosts who had barely had a meaningful touch in the first few minutes until Ward was brought down by Langdon and Wilding hit a quick freekick wide of the mark from 20 yards.
A freekick on the half way line gave Worcester a chance down the left and Barnes sent a long searching ball forward which failed to trouble Bevan on 7.
Sheldon’s right wing ball found Foster on the left of the area on 9 but the captains shot was blocked and cleared before The Lambs won a freekick 35 yards out.
Hildreth sent the dead ball into the box but it was hoofed clear by Wilding and Tamworth were forced to try and build again.
Worceter’s Adaggio turned well on the left to put a ball into the area on 12 and the pace was unrelenting but Langdon and Wylde combined to clear the danger before a knock to Hildreth halted play.
With the sun beating down the action switched to the Worcester area and Rodman almost found Wright with a deft chip over the defence. Instead the ball bounced up and Pritchard tried a clever overhead kick only for Richardson to chest it back to McDonnell on 13.
On 16 Wright found Foster in space with a great pass under pressure on the right and the latter unleashed a drive from 25 yards but was a few feet wide of the mark.
With £4,500 prize money on offer there was no let up in play or passion as Dismore took the brunt of a hefty challenge requiring him to leave the field momentarily on 17 and a drop ball was launched long and out for a goal kick by ex-City man Smith.
Foster received a talking to from Mr Rathbone on 19 for a trip on Bampton and Barnes caused some mayhem in the Lambs box with his long freekick which was eventually cleared away.
Smith picked up a booking on 21 for a foul but nothing came from Bampton’s freekick and play continued in a similar fashion, the home side battling hard to retain possession while Tamworth tried to play their game on the floor when allowed.
Bampton then received a booking for a trip which set up Hildreth with a dead ball chance from 30 yards. McDonnell punched clear and Rodman tried hard to get the ball into the danger area but play was stopped for a foul as Worcester looked like they would break from the edge of the box.
Good play from the home side ended with Adaggio placing his header from a left wing cross into the hands of Bevan and there was little to choose between the two sides.
Foster sent a freekick from the half way line into the box and eventually Wright found a shooting position but was unable to get purchase on his shot on 33 and made it easy for McDonnell to gather.
A long throw found the head of Wright at the far post on 35 but he was adjudged to have pushed his way to his position and play was halted once again.
Wylde found Sheldon with a good ball from midfield on 37, but he shot wide from distance and Wright and Foster played some neat football with Hildreth but the half chance was cleared although some hesitatncy in the home defence was becoming more evident.
Davies then brought down Rodman 20 yards out slightly to the left of centre on 39 and after the City wall (containing a wriggling Sheldon) had been sorted by the referee Hildreth stepped up to try a shot at goal but cleared the bar by a couple of feet.
Wylde brought Adaggio down as he turned past him on 45 and picked up the third booking of the match but the home side failed to cause any problems from the freekick and the half time whistle blew on an enjoyable, but frustrating first half for both sides.
Tamworth kicked off the second period towards the travelling faithful, enjoying the September sunshine and on 49 Pritchard almost found the head of Wright steaming into the centre of the box, but the Lambs frontman was not able to get high enough.
Then on 50 Pritchard sent a lofted header back to Bevan who had to stretch to collect the ball and landed awkwardly holding his back.
He soon shoot it off though and was protected well by the Lambs defence as City pushed themselves in the previously uncharted territory of the final third of the field.
Lyttle caught Dinsmore’s shin with an accidental stray boot causing the Worcester player to take some more time off the park on 53 and although Tamworth pushed forward play was halted by the whistle once again.
Another freekick came Tamworth’s way on 56 which was driven forward by Smith, but the whistle stopped play yet again and Sheldon saw his name go into the book on 56 for what appeared to be dissent after a decision went against him.
Bampton became the first sub of the afternoon on 59 and Wilding got a stiff talking to by the referee shortly after following another niggly foul, this time on Wylde.
Adaggio found Ward with a good cross field ball on the hour causing Tamworth to clear their lines when the final ball came in from the right as the home side enjoyed a spell of possession.
Mills brought on Sheridan on 63 for Wright who had been having a hard time of it, changing the shape of The Lambs slightly, with Sheldon now the target man ahead of an almost five man midfield – and Sheridan quickly won a corner which Hildreth took on 65 which Wylde rose to head home past the covering defenders and despite protestations from the home defence which resulted in a booking for Ward, the goal stood. (1-0, 65 mins).
Worcester, looking for a quick way back won a freekick on 67 and Davies powerful low drive was terrifically cleared out by the feet of Bevan who saw it very late.
Things were getting a bit more feisty out on the field and City were definitely not going to go out of the cup without a fight. Adaggio was doing his best to work his way past the Lambs but ultimately failing.
Lea came on for Rodman on 71, as Sheldon dropped back into midfield leaving the diminutive striker alone up front, while City worked hard and Davies shot from distance but cleared the bar by some margin on 73.
Tamworth were being forced to surrender their usual passing game in preference of an ‘anything goes’ approach at times as City bustled their way into the final 15 minutes and Wylde conceded a freekick 35 yards out on 80 for a push. Davies lined up the dead ball rightfooted, but drove it into the two man wall. Worcester kept possession by means of enforced throw ins on the right but they failed to threaten Bevan.
The Lambs did find time to try and extend the scoreline though when Lea and Pritchard combined with a neat one two into the area, but Lea was closed down as he shot and hit his effort off target on 82.
Smith headed the ball behind from Davies deep cross on 85 for a home corner which Bevan punched clear and Tamworth pushed Worcester back into their own half with every kick.
Some choice words from Barnes earned him a booking on 87 and Jephcott came on for his first appearance in a City shirt as Dryden looked for a late equaliser from his side.
The home faithful were getting frustrated too expecting more from their huffing and puffing team while whistles came from the Lambs fans urging to referee to put The Lambs into the hat for the next round – and then four minutes added time were shown…
Smith conceded a freekick for a dubious foul on Jephcott on 93 setting up Ward for a dip against his old club and put in a fair shot on goal, but missed the far upright by a yard.
Lea found space and time to get an easy shot at McDonnell from Sheldon’s pass but City came back again albeit via the long route and won a corner as the added time period ended.
Keeper McDonnell came up for the flag kick but could do nothing to force a replay and a loud cheer rose from the Lambs fans who saw their side go through to the draw on Monday four and a half thousand pounds the richer.
Bevan, Lyttle, Langdon, Smith, Wylde, Foster, Wright (Sheridan 63), Hildreth, Sheldon, Rodman (Lea 71), Pritchard
Subs: McAughtrie, Burgess, Law, Warburton, Jones
Worcester City Team:
McDonnell, Ward, Khan, Richardson, Barnes, Bampton (Fitzpatrick 56), Davies (Jephcott 87), Dinsmore (Wood 71), Wilding, Adaggio, McGrath
Subs: Richards, Walker, Price, Wright
Referee: Mr. I. Rathbone (Northampton)