Smash and grab sends Boro’ crashing out of the FA Cup
Having seemingly done the hard part, by coming back from 0-2 down on Saturday, Boro’ were looking to complete the job tonight with a trip to St Albans City on 11th October awaiting the winners.
Sadly, despite being on top for much of the first half and creating opportunities, their uncertainty in the final third, coupled with a resolute Brackley defence and the absence at times of a favourable bounce, means that once again, they bow out of the F.A. Cup at the first hurdle.
The visitors got the game under way at 7:48 p.m. and set out at a good pace which led to Ross needing to make a good diving save to his right after just two minutes. Boro’ then took the game to Brackley and created several good chances. Okenabirhie accepted a pass from Page and Turley was forced into a good save.
Following a good build up involving Ball, Page and Okenabirhie, Boro’ could only watch in disbelief as the final effort was kicked off the line and out for an unproductive corner.
Fearn had a shot from outside the area which Turley only parried, but when Page pounced ant put the ball in the net, he was somewhat dubiously ruled offside. Webb shot wide following a free kick on the right.
On 15 minutes, the visitors made a rare visit to the other end and won a corner. The corner was cleared and set Boro’ on a quick counter attack which saw Webb’s final cross drift out for a goal kick.
Brackley rode their luck twice more in a five minute spell when Turley fumbled two more balls into the area. The first time the ball fortunately fell nicely for Samuels who gratefully cleared and then the next time, as Page advanced on the loose ball, the linesman again signalled offside.
Then, against the run of play, a Brackley attack resulted in a real fizzer of a shot from Eric Odhiambo which flew past Ross into the far corner of the net from the left hand corner of the area. Boro’ 0-1 Brackley, 27 minutes.
The remainder of the half saw Boro’ attacking almost constantly, but the closest they came to a goal was when Fearn collected the ball some 30 yards out and shot just wide.
The only other threat prior to half time also involved CJ who was harshly judged to have fouled Whittall about 40 yards out, but the free kick was safely cleared.
Half Time: Farnborough 0-1 Brackley Town
Having had the majority of possession and created several chances, Boro’ found themselves a goal down and in need of another comeback.
The 2nd half started at 8.50 p.m. with the opening ten minutes or so, producing attacks from both sides without a serious threat to the scoreline.
Boro’ then made two substitutions in quick succession replacing Okenabirhie with Takyi on 58 minutes and Fearn with Montugu after 63 minutes.
Boro’ continued to attack and were awarded a free kick about 40 yards out when Takyi was fouled. Webb’s free kick was headed out, but not cleared and when the ball was returned into the middle, the same player had a shot on target, but Turley dealt with it safely on this occasion.
Next, Page jinked his way through and was shaping to shoot when he appeared to catch his foot and stumble which saw the ball run to Bennett whose shot through a bunch of defenders lacked power.
A long cross from the left found Bennett at the far post, but his lack of height saw ball to bounce out off the top of his head and out for a goal kick.
Boro’ were throwing everyone forward in their search for an equaliser and with ten minutes to go, Page’s persistence on the left saw him make room for a shot from near to the goal line, which was just too high.
All out attack left the home side vulnerable to the counter attack and Ross did well to get down and save from Whittall before Boro’ made their final substitution on 83 minutes with Guyonnet coming on for Tumwa.
Boro’ almost paid dearly for giving away possession on the edge of their penalty area, but Ross did well to punch clear. Brackley made a 2nd sub after 85 minutes replacing Pearson with Brown.
The remainder of the 90 minutes and the 5 added on saw continuous attacking from Boro’ causing the visitors to pack their goalmouth to good effect.
A left side corner for Boro’ was headed over for another on the right. This kick was delayed for Ross to join the attack and he all but became the late, late saviour when managing to get in a header in a very crowded area, but, to the dismay of everyone, it was a fraction too high.
The final action saw Brackley make their third sub, replacing their goal scorer, Odhiambo with McDonald just before Mr Kelly blew for time.
FULL TIME: Farnborough 0-1 Brackley Town
Despite all their efforts, the result was a case of deja vu for Boro’ who suffered as they had last year,when grinding out a draw at Eastbourne Borough only to lose the replay. Until they can find a consistently ruthless streak in front of goal, or get a kinder bounce more often, we will have to accept this sort of result.
The lads will need to regroup and bounce back for another tough ask this coming Saturday, against Ebbsfleet United.
Match Report by Tony Duff.
A massive thank you to all the supporters who turned up last night!
Next up for Farnborough – Saturday 4 October (KO 3pm), Ebbsfleet United (home).
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