FA Cup Preliminary Round – 21st August 2021
Basingstoke Town 2 v 1 AFC Totton Attendance TBC
Where: Winklebury Complex, Winklebury Way, Basingstoke. RG23 8BF
Stoke edge through next round on two Conor Lynch penalties
Manager Dan Brownlie made a number of changes for this FA Cup encounter: 1. Paul Strudley, 2. Daniel Williamson, 3. James Howarth, 4. D’Andre Brown, 5. Scott Armsworth, 6. Shaun Dallimore, 7. McKoy Palmer, 8. Simon Dunn (Capt), 9. Conor Lynch, 10. Bradley Wilson, 11. George Reid
On the bench: Lloyd Snell, Julian Schwarzer, Aiden Lewis, Adam Everiss,
Referee – Lee Dudman
On a day when the expected rain never appeared, Stoke undertook this season’s FA Cup adventure against a strong AFC Totton team, in front of a hopeful crowd.
The opening minutes saw very little goal-mouth action from either team, until a fortunate free-kick on 8 minutes, given to AFC Totton just outside the Stoke box. This was however wasted by Totton’s Brett Williams as it flew over the crossbar.
On 14 mins Stoke create their first real chance through Bradley Wilson, but his shot is cleared by a Totton defender just inside the penalty area.
On 20 minutes a McKoy Palmer corner causes havoc in the Totton box, and the referee turns down appeals for a penalty to Stoke.
The next 10 minutes sees very little action apart from the referee who hands out two bookings, one to George Reid.
A neat move down the right allows Reid to send over a dangerous cross, which beats McKoy Palmer’s run into the box.
We head into the last five minutes of the first-half and neither team has a created clear chance on goal, as both defences have snuffed out any attacks.
A claim for a penalty on Conor Lynch correctly gets waived away by the referee, as he went down a little too easy.
The halftime whistle is blown dead on 45 minutes and the players head to the dressing room with the game tied 0-0.
Halftime Basingstoke Town 0 – AFC Totton
The second-half gets underway and the first few minutes see very little action, until a neat passing movement by Lynch & Williamson results in a free-kick to Stoke just outside the box. Dunn finds Lynch whose shot fails to trouble the Totton keeper.
Then on 52 mins, confusion spreads around the crowd, as the referee points to the penalty spot, after the linesman flags for a penalty following a tackle by keeper Strudley on the Totton forward Kasimu.
Brett Williams steps up and slots it away and Stoke go one goal behind.
This seems to ignite our team, and we press forward and after an initial attack is cleared, we break down the right and as Lynch cuts inside a tackle by a Totton defender brings him down, and the referee has no hesitation in pointing to the penalty spot. It’s Lynch who steps up and comfortably sends Lewis Noice, the Totton keeper the wrong way. GOAL ! Basingstoke 1 – 1 AFC Totton.
The crowd are much happier now, and it’s Stoke who seem to be edging the midfield battle, but this results in more yellow cards to Totton players. One of these to their goal-scorer Williams seems him replace by Craig Feeney, who is trudges off with a few friendly cheers from the home crowd.
The game has never taken really ignited into the action-packed game that was expected as we move into the last 20 minutes of the match.
Stoke then win a free-kick just outside the box, and the kick, flies beats the wall, but flies past the far post.
It’s time for Stoke’s first change as McKoy Palmer is replaced by Lloyd Snell on 80 mins.
Still very little to split the teams, until a Stoke attack sees our new right-back Daniel Williamson take on two Totton defenders, and as he breaks into the penalty area, he is clipped by one of them and the referee points once more to the penalty spot. It is Conor Lynch again, and he again sends the keeper the wrong way. GOAL !! Basingstoke 2 – 1 AFC Totton (83 mins)
We head into the last few minutes of the match, and the visitors have created very little threat on our goal, and we make our second change with D’Andre Brown replaced by Adam Everiss.
Then on 90 minutes a Totton attack sees their forward’s shot deflected over the bar.
The visitors have back-to-back corners and the second one is superbly picked out of the air by Strudley and the Totton threat is silenced.
The home fans are now questioning how much injury-time the referee wants to play as we head into the 96th minute, but then the referee calls time and your Basingstoke side head into the next round of the cup.
Final Score: Basingstoke Town 2 – 1 AFC Totton
Lynch 2 (Pens 56 & 83 mins) Williams Pen 52 mins
Another strong team performance where the game never burst into that expected action-packed match. Good to see captain Simon Dunn last 90 minutes as well.
More importantly we head into next week’s draw, with the £1,444 winners prize in the bank balance.
We host Hanwell Town next Saturday in our first league home match next Saturday (28th) at 3pm.
Match Report by Martin French..