F.A. Cup 3rd Round
Gillingham 1-2 Aston Villa by Andy Scott.
Jackson equalised for Gills in a close encounter
A controversial late penalty was enough to see Aston Villa through at the expense of a brave Gillingham side, who can feel very unlucky not to have earned a replay.
At times it was difficult to tell which side was fourth in the Premier League as the League Two side defied the 72 league places that separated them.
Martin O’Neill signalled his intent by naming the strongest side possible, only Gabriel Agbonlahor and Gareth Barry missing out through sickness and injury respectively. It took only 13 minutes for Aston Villa to take the lead but it was more through luck than quality. A nasty bobble led to Gillingham captain Adam Miller losing possession to Stiliyan Petrov, who played in James Milner to neatly bend his shot into the top corner.
Rather being overwhelmed by the occasion, the goal simply snapped the Gills into action. Winger Dennis Oli twice went close without testing the keeper as Gillingham rallied and Curtis Davies was forced to make a last ditch tackle. Youngster Nathan Delfouneso wasted Villa’s only other chance of the half volleying over from 6 yards.
The Gills deservedly levelled the match with a stunning goal from Canadian international Simeon Jackson. The striker turned Zat Knight 20 yards from goal, powered into the box and lashed a rasping shot off the post and past Friedel.
It was no less than the Gills deserved having dominated most of the game. It was in the 77th minute that hearts were broken when referee Keith Stroud awarded a soft penalty as Ashley Young fell easily under pressure from Miller. Milner
calmly slotted the penalty home to spare Villa’s blushes and they held on to book their place in the 4th round.
And League 2 no longer has any representatives left in the competition. after Macclesfield and Chesterfield also suffered defeats. Macclesfield were beaten by Premier League side Everton, thanks to a Leon Osman half-volley. Chesterfield went down 3-0 at Ipswich, after they replaced Droylsden in the competition, as the Blue Square North side fielded an ineligible player against the Spireites.
So Blyth Spartans roll on in the F.A. Cup.
After dismissing Shrewsbury Town in the first round, they have squeezed past Bournemouth in the second. It took a replay, and a last minute goal, but now they are rewarded with a home tie against Blackburn Rovers, and who would bet against them causing the struggling Premier League side trouble?
The winner came from substitute Ged Dalton, who amazingly does not even train with the Spartans! But the game-changing moment was Brett Pitman’s straight red halfway through the second period. Either way, it’s the non-league side that are through to the third round.
And Chesterfield were frustrated again at Blue Square North side Droylsden. The Spireites were 2-0 up thanks to goals from Jack Lester and Darren Currie, but the game was sensationally abadoned for the second time, due to floodlight failure. And struggling manager Lee Richardson was, shall we say, less than impressed.
So the results leaves just three League 2 sides left in the competition. Chesterfield obviously still have a second round tie to get past, but Gillingham face Premier League side Aston Villa at home, while Macclesfield also face a team from the top-flight in Everton.
Posted in Bournemouth, Chesterfield
Tagged Aston Villa, Blackburn Rovers, Blyth Spartans, Bournemouth, Brett Pitman, Chesterfield, Darren Currie, Droylsden, Everton, F.A. Cup, Ged Dalton, Gillingham, Jack Lester, Lee Richardson, Macclesfield, Premier League, Shrewsbury Town
More misery for League 2 this weekend. In fact, the only League 2 club to make it through, were playing against a team from the same division!
Macclesfield beat Port Vale 3-1, with 2 goals from Francis Green handing them a home-tie against Premier League Everton in the Third Round draw.
Notts County face a replay, after being held by Kettering, as do Bournemouth, who were frustrated by Blyth Spartans. Bradford lost at home to League 1 Leyton Orient 2-1, and Dag & Red put up a good fight away to high-flying Leicester City, going down 3-2 in the end.
But the big story was our very own ‘invincibles’. Can’t lose in League 1, but put them on a sloped pitch against a team three divisions below them and they lose! Eastwood Town humbled the mighty Wycombe 2-0, and sent themselves through to the Third Round.
Forest Green beat Rochdale 2-0, to send another League 2 club on form out of the competition. And Brentford who comfortably sit in the top-half of League 2 were beaten by Conference strugglers Barrow.
F.A. Cup Second Round Results:
Friday Nov 28:
Barrow 2-1 Brentford
Port Vale 1-3 Macclesfield
Saturday Nov 29:
Bournemouth 0-0 Blyth Spartans
Bradford 1-2 Leyton Orient
Eastwood Town 2-0 Wycombe
Fleetwood Town 2-3 Hartlepool
Forest Green 2-0 Rochdale
Gillingham 0-0 Stockport
Grays Athletic 0-2 Carlisle
Kidderminster 2-0 Curzon Ashton
Leicester 3-2 Dag & Red
Millwall 3-0 Aldershot
Peterborough 0-0 Tranmere
Scunthorpe 4-0 Alfreton Town
Southend 3-1 Luton
Torquay 2-0 Oxford Utd
Sunday Nov 30:
Histon 1-0 Leeds
Notts County 1-1 Kettering
Posted in Mixed
Tagged Barrow, Blyth Spartans, Bournemouth, Bradford City, Brentford, Dag & Red, Eastwood Town, Everton, Forest Green, Francis Green, Kettering, Leicester City, Leyton Orient, Macclesfield Town, Notts County, Port Vale, Premier League, Rochdale, Wycombe Wanderers