Hednesford Town 1-1 Cleethorpes Town

Hednesford Town and Cleethorpes Town will have to do it all again on Wednesday evening after a goal 12 minutes from time saw the visitors earn a replay in this FA Trophy tie.

It was the home side that started the game on the front foot but it was Cleethorpes who almost edged ahead when they broke from a Hednesford freekick in the 11th minute but some smart thinking from goalkeeper James Wren denied Paul Beesley as he prepared to pounce when free inside the area.

A minute later the Pitmen almost opened the scoring when a ball down the middle was flicked on by Joey Butlin to James Fitzgibbon but the midfielder saw his effort from inside the box strike the post and then cleared away for a corner.

In the 21st minute pinball in the Cleethorpes box lead to a half chance for James Mutton but the defender couldn’t connect properly and the chance was gone.

The Pitmen would take the lead in the 34th minute when the lively Fitzgibbon got to the byline and his cross was cannoned into Joey Butlin who finished smartly into the top corner of the net. Appeals for handball from the visitors went unnoticed by the officials.

Five minutes later some good football from the home side led to the ball finding its way to Butlin but his shot from 25 yards was easily saved.

Right on the stroke of halftime Fitzgibbon fed Jordan Graham and the striker cut inside before seeing his shot blocked away from the edge of the box.

HT: 1-0

Hednesford were dealt a blow at halftime with captain Tom Thorley being forced off and striker Danny Glover having to come on in central midfield due to a growing injury list, however they almost doubled their lead from the kick-off but Butlin saw his curling effort saved.

As the half progressed the visitors applied more pressure though and Hednesford started to sit back on their one goal lead.

A good chance came and went for the visitors in the 62nd minute with Danny North firing a freekick from 20 yards out wide of the goal.

In the 65th minute Hednesford were indebted to goalkeeper Wren as he superbly pushed Beesley’s effort up and onto the top of the crossbar before the ball was cleared away to safety.

Hednesford tried to relieve the pressure with two more substitutions and one of those, Adriel George, cut inside in the 73rd minute fired his effort well over the crossbar.

Five minutes later though the visitors would pull level when debutant Charlie Gatter was adjudged to have fouled his man in the penalty area and North stepped up to confidently roll the ball into the bottom corner of the net.

The visitors now fancied their chances of an upset but it was the Pitmen who would go closest to winning it when Fitzgibbon cut inside from the left and curled a cross into the box which struck the crossbar before being cleared away to safety.

Hednesford Town: Wren, Gatter, Campion, Fitzpatrick, Mutton, Oji, Steele (George 69), Thorley (Glover 46), Butlin (Lawrie 76), Graham, Fitzgibbon
Subs not used: Crooks, Veiga

Cleethorpes Town: Walton, Lowe, Winn (Drury 74), Richardson, Bloomer, Donald, Mascall, Davis (McKay 76), Beesley (Aldrich 89), North, Oglesby

Attendance: 369

 

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