1874 Northwich 2-3 Thatcham Town
FA Vase semi-final second leg
The stage was set at Wincham Park last Saturday for more history to be made in a remarkable season so far from 1874 but alas the greens failed to reach the final at Wembley in May but they did so with dignity and all of their efforts in this competition were acknowledged by the biggest attendance at any 1874 game.
Trailing by just a single goal (scored very early in the game at Thatcham a week ago) the home side were optimistic of turning this around but unfortunately the visitors had other ideas and were celebrating just three minutes into this game when they opened the scoring through the star player – Gavin James – who scored with ease inside the area when a free kick was fortuitously deflected into his path.
Of course this goal meant that the real score line in the tie was 2-0 to the visitors and 1874’s plans had changed so early in the encounter. In truth it became difficult to play their normal fluent football that had served them well so far on this wonderful cup run and try as they did the breaks needed just didn’t arrive. An equalizing goal would certainly have helped the cause but in the 22nd minute another goal was scored but again it was Thatcham and their following who were doing the celebrating as James netted his second goal after reacting quickly to a loose ball following a corner.
It was certainly an uphill task now for 1874 but urged on by an excellent crowd they tried their best to “get into the game” and just before half time the hopes were raised as Scot McGowan converted a penalty to make the score 1-2 and 1874 buoyed by this enjoyed their best spell of the half as they threatened the Thatcham goal with a string of half chances from set pieces with Ryan Jackson going closest to equalising as his shot was cleared off the line.
The half-time whistle was not what 1874 wanted whilst their opponents probably did need to have a break and listen to their manager’s instructions for the second 45 minutes.
At the start of the second half the noise from the home supporters was at its’ highest and expectations were high for another memorable “cup comeback” but for the third time in this semi-final encounter 1874 conceded a goal at the start of a 45 minute period when Cooper Clark netted after being set up by James
1874 now needed three goals to take the tie into extra time and they did manage to create chances. Jake Parker’s effort was saved by the boot of Thatcham’s goalkeeper at the expense of a corner and substitute Taylor Kennerley made the keeper work hard to keep out another goal wards effort but the only reward for all of this late pressure was a strong headed goal by Matt Woolley from a corner in the 69th minute.
1874: Hall (GK), Connor (Riley 57), Mitchell, Pritchard, Lee Jackson, Parker, Matthew Woolley (Fallon 70), Jones, Hind (Kennerley 51), McGowan, Ryan Jackson
Subs not used Whitlock & Meadowcroft – Goals McGowan 44 (pen), Matthew Woolley 69
Thatcham win 4-2 on aggregate – Referee Neil Hair – Attendance 1,693
|Sat 24 Mar 2018||3:00 pm||F.A. Vase||2017/18|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals|
|Referee||Assistant Referee 1||Assistant Referee 2||Fourth Official|
|Neil Hair||Matthew Smith||Robert Evans||Scott Simpson|
KO 43 50 56 69 69 84 FT