FOOTBALL - Valley through in FA Cup replay after narrow Westfields win - The Rugby Observer

FOOTBALL - Valley through in FA Cup replay after narrow Westfields win

Rugby Editorial 11th Aug, 2022 Updated: 11th Aug, 2022   0

LIAM Francis scored the only goal as Rugby Town advanced in the FA Cup with a narrow 1-0 win against Westfields in a replay at Butlin Road.

The defender headed home in the second half to settle the cup tie after the teams played out a 2-2 draw at Allpay Park last weekend.

Valley will make the trip to Studley in the next round of the competition.

Manager Carl Adams said: “It’s most definitely been a tough opening for us with four games in 11 days, but I’m delighted how we’ve got through it.

“We started with six players in their 30’s in the replay, on the back of a long trip on Saturday and a gruelling game played in sweltering conditions, and despite the fact that the players were dead on their feet come the end, we’ve dug in deep again and got the result we wanted and I think deserved.

“We’ll be looking to regroup and re-energise ahead of this Saturday’s league game with Bugbrooke, and it should help having younger legs like Charlie Evans and MJ (Semahimbo) back in contention again.

“There’s a real togetherness amongst the players at the moment, and that’s what has helped us get through these early challenges.

“The fans have been great too, and hopefully we can give them even more to cheer about on Saturday and beyond.”

Westfields had an early goal ruled out for offside as the visitors started the better of the two sides before skipper Loyiso Recci had a shot smothered at the other end.

Rugby grew into the contest and scored the decisive goal on 56 minutes when Francis bundled the ball home from Ryan Seal’s corner from close range.

The visitors spurned a golden chance to equalise when Ben Vine somehow headed over from virtually underneath the Rugby crossbar.

Valley should have settled the tie in the closing stages with Caine Elliott and David Kolodynski both going close as they secured their place in the next round at the expense of the Hellenic League Premier Division side.

Rugby are next in action at home to Bugbrooke St Michaels on Saturday, August 13 with kick-off at 3pm at Butlin Road.


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