Brave Boro’ earn a Replay in North Devon

Farnborough travelled to Bideford with only 12 players available due to a number of unavailabilities, injuries and suspensions.

The visitors were outplayed in the first half but Bideford led only through Sean Downing’s brilliant 28th-minute goal.

Farnborough were gifted an equaliser in the 57th minute when on-loan Reading striker Bogdan Vastsuk shot into an empty net. And after Bideford centre-back Nick Milton was sent off for a last-man foul on Vastsuk, they looked the most likely winners.

The hosts Bideford started the brightest of the two sides and should have opened the scoring after 11 minutes when Chamberlain sprung the offside trap but blazed a shot over the bar when he found himself one-on-one with Tupper.

Eight minutes later, Downing put a half-volley wide after Bideford worked the ball into the box from a throw-in.

The Robins did open the scoring on 27 minutes when Downing recieved Barker’s pass on the edge of the box and turned MacDonald before placing a shot into the far corner past Tupper. Bideford 1-0 Farnborough.

Vastsuk tried his luck from distance when he saw Moore off his line but the Reading loanee overhit his shot.

Tupper was drawn into a good diving save from a 25-yard free-kick from Bideford substitute, Groves.

Farnborough won an number of successive corners but were unable to make them count, with the Bideford defence standing strong.

The hosts deservedly led at Half Time, with Farnborough only creating a few half chances in and around the Bideford Penalty box.

HALF TIME: Bideford 1-0 Farnborough

Milton forced Tupper into an early save at his near post from a Bideford corner from the right.

Minutes later, Tupper made a fine reflex save to keep out Squire’s header from close range.

On 58 minutes, Vastsuk received the ball on the edge of the area and struck the ball home, with Moore off his line, not for the first time in the game. Bideford 1-1 Farnborough.

A few chances in box boxes came to nothing a both teams searched for a winner.

In the 78th minute, Vastsuk was set through on goal but was clearly held back by Milton and the Referee had no choice but to send off the Bideford centre-back.

With the extra man, Farnborough went close to winning the tie three times in the last five minutes. Nick Brown beat Moore to the ball from Vastsuk’s square pass but shot into the side-netting, then Freddie Grant shot against the post and Brown put the ball wide after a Matt Bevans pull-back.

Farnborough should have made the extra-man advantage count and had three great opportunities to do so.

Nicholas Brown latched onto Vastsuk’s forward ball and rounded Moore but couldn’t find a finish from a tight angle and whilst off-balance.

With Boro’ bombing forwards in search of a winner, Vastsuk burst down the left and pulled the ball back to Freddie Grant who struck the post with Moore beaten.

The final chance saw Bevans escape past Bye and into the box only to cut the ball back to Brown who’s first-time strike went agonisingly wide.

FULL TIME: Bideford 1-1 Farnborough

The two sides meet again on Monday evening for a Replay at The Rushmoor Community Stadium, with the winners bagging £2.700 prize money.

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