Given how much history we have in the competition over the last 100 years or so and that nearly every player talks about the club’s notoriety in the FA Cup upon signing for us, I’ve more or less come to expect that when it comes to the FA Cup, the lads know they need to come correct. Alas, yesterday they did not.
To summarise yesterday, for the most part and especially in the second half we were slow, sloppy, uncoordinated and wasted plenty of half chances. Make no mistake about it Bradford PA were shite, and I mean truly shite and with the quality of players we have, we should have twatted them.
As for the starting XI, Harrison Clark dropped out in place of JJ Hooper as Spartans reverted back to a 4-2-3-1 with Joe Oliver also coming in to replace Rhys Evans who injured his shoulder last Saturday away at Chester.
The start was a slow one, with neither side really looking that impressive in the opening 15 mins. We got more entertainment from balancing random shite on Soulsby’s baldy heed than actually watching the match early on. Thankfully though just as Blyth started to show a bit of confidence in the final third, Forbes’ cross into the box eventually fell to Jack Bodenham on the edge of the box who rifled one home from 20 yards out.
After the goal we began to play the ball around a bit better, and looked like we’d kick on and eventually bag another 2 or 3 to secure easy passage to the next round but apart from JJ Hooper’s headed effort over the bar after some good work from Lids, the chances we did create were completely wasted. Alex Mitchell was on fine form yesterday as well, with him pulling off a brilliant save late in the first half to keep Blyth in the lead.
As the second half got underway Spartans seemed to be in control of the game but again, wasted chances from good positions thanks to some really poor finishing. As the half went on we seemed to get really sloppy with the ball, losing it high up the pitch thanks to plenty of poor first touches, coupled with some poor passing the ball constantly being ran into trouble. The game became genuinely boring to watch in all honesty, as the quality just was not their from either side.
Bradford eventually began to create chances for themselves and when the goal finally came, it was a looping effort from Harry Colville that looked more like a cross that bypassed Alex Mitchell. While it was shite goal to concede, it wasn’t really down to an error on Mitchell’s part at all but in fairness to Bradford, they probably deserved the goal with the chances they created.
Spartans pressed late on to try and grab a winner and avoid a delightful trip to Bradford on Monday night and did manage to carve out one or two decent chances but alas, they were squandered.
As for Monday night’s replay, if you’ve never been to Bradford PA before or not been for a few years, it’s traditionally a bit of a shitehole. However they’ve improved the bar in recent years. Wey, at least it doesn’t smell like death anymore. Plus the café is canny as well. Parking is a free for all though, so good luck. They’ve also got a fence around the 4G pitch these days so you aren’t banished to the wooden stand that probably hasn’t passed a safety inspection since 1968.
Absolutely dick all around the ground sadly, unless you’re up for a picturesque walk so it’s straight to the ground for a pint. From memory they didn’t have a great choice of lagers on tap and it was neigh on a fiver a pint so, aye.
Lewis Knight likely won’t be ready to come back just yet, though he did warm up on Saturday. Rhys will likely still be missing, though he could at lest feature on the bench. Nicky Deverdics could also be be back, as he’s been a huge miss since his injury.
No supporters bus will be on tomorrow of course, though I expect a decent amount of people going down in cars so we should have a decent following. Prices for tomorrow as follows.
Adults – £13
Concessions – £10
Students – £5
Youth (12-7) – £3
As for the FA Cup 3rd qualifying round draw, that takes place tomorrow afternoon at 1pm. If the FA website doesn’t crash again, we should hopefully know our potential fate straight away, Below are the teams expected to be in the ‘Northern’ part of the draw with us.
Safe travels to everyone making the journey down tomorrow night, hopefully see some of you for a pint in the clubhouse before we secure the prize money and bag Whitby away in the next round!