FA Cup Preliminary Round Saturday 24th August 2019
Basingstoke Town 0 – 2 Westfield Attendance TBC
Where: The Simplyhealth Stadium, Hillier’s Way, Winchester
Another cup game, another early exit and a lack of players!
Getting to the ground a number of rumours about a few missing players left Martin Kuhl to go with the following line-up; 1.Chris Rackley, 2. Aiden Harris 3. Andrew Charsley, 4. Joe Hancott, 5. Ben Cook, 6. D’Andre Brown 7. Morgan Toney-Green, 8. Claudio Herbert, 9. Ben Wright, 10. Reece Rusher, 11. Adam Everiss
On the bench; Lloyd Snell, Riccardo Andrady and Arnold Linturn
The game initially delayed due to the away teams misunderstanding that you need to provide a kit that does not clash with the home team, also saw a well-respected minute’s applause for long time Stoke fan Dave Stratton got underway on a very warm sunny afternoon, with Stoke attacking the shed end.
The first 10 to 15 minutes sees neither team able to put anything of note together, as passes fall wide of their intended player or fly over the head of players and out of play.
Stoke’s first shot of note is on 19 minutes, when a shot from Claudio Herbert hits the safe hands of the Westfield keeper.
On 21 mins and a sign that things are not great, is Stoke give way the first of a number of free-kicks within 30yds of our goal. This kick is well blocked by a solid wall and we break downfield and Ben Cook has a shot that flies just over the bar.
On 27 mins another free-kick to the visitors flies just wide of the far post.
Three minutes later and Stoke are wide open as Westfield sweep down the left wing, the cross is blocked out for a corner. The resulting corner is cleared, but yet another foul, allows the visitors to put more pressure on the goal, but Rackley is equal to whatever is thrown at him.
On 32 mins another scramble in our penalty box, but Aiden Harris is able to clear.
On 34 mins Herbert wins a free-kick as he is fouled 25yds out from the Westfield goal. The kick well was just simply wasted as Rusher and Wright can’t decide what to do with it and Westfield clear.
Then Rackley proves his worth as he tips the ball over the bar for a corner. The corner is again well blocked and cleared.
The last few minutes of the half, we have a little possession which includes a shot from Rusher straight at the keeper and a shot from Herbert that he should have done better, but the ball flies 10yds over the bar.
The halftime whistle is blown with the game goalless.
Well it seems yet again we seem not to be ready as the start of the second-half, as Westfield attack and a shot from outside the box brings the first goal of the game as a shot flies over Rackley and into the goal.
Stoke yet again seem to string any sort of attack together and the minutes tick by.
On 61 mins and that should have been two nil, but a wasted shot by Westfield is dragged wide.
The crowd are growing restless, but Stoke just simply can’t create any sort of attack at the moment.
On 67 mins, we make our first change as new boy Arnold Linturn replaces Claudio Herbert.
Still neither team are looking that great, but then Westfield double their lead as they break, and it appears we have somehow chipped the ball over our own keeper into the net.
Riccardo Andrady is our second substitute on 75 mins for D’Andre Brown.
If the home fans were looking for some late fight back, it’s just simply not happening today, as we still can’t put any pressure on their keeper.
Harris goes in the book as we move into injury-time.
The referee who was one of the bright spots of the day decides to put the Basingstoke faithful out of their misery and blows the final whistle, as we exit the FA Cup yet again with a whimper.
Final Score: Basingstoke Town 0 – 2 Westfield FC
Up next is Monday’s Bank Holiday home game against Winchester City.
Match Report by Martin French..