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Hurst double gives FC United FA Cup victory

FC United booked a place in the third qualifying round of the FA Cup sponsored by E.ON after coming from behind to beat Blue Square North side Gainsborough Trinity 2-1 with two goals from Glynn Hurst.

Despite the away team currently playing their football the league above United it was the Reds that started the brighter of the two with Richard Battersby testing Trinity ’keeper Phillip Barnes with a hard shot from outside of the box early on.

United fielded a narrower midfield which had no recognised winger but Simon Carden, James Holden, Battersby and Nicky Platt proved more than a handful in the middle of the park.

Most of the first half was a quiet affair, with Gainsborough often looking dangerous when playing the ball in to big forward Jefferson Louis who caused the United defence problems all afternoon with his sheer size and strength.

Indeed, Louis played his part in the opening goal as he tussled with Karl Munroe in the United box from a corner before being brought down for a penalty. Up stepped Lewis McMahon who coolly converted the penalty to give Gainsborough the lead.

United wouldn’t take it lying down though and struck back within minutes and vitally just before the half time interval, a well worked ball into the box was back heeled by Mike Norton into the path of Hurst who coolly slotted home to put United level, and reignite the tie.

As the teams resumed action in the second half United looked like a team that had seen what their opponents had to offer, and knew they could better it as they immediately went on the attack from the restart.

Minutes into the second half and United took the lead after some good pressure. A Holden cross from the left deflected off the head of a Gainsborough defender which only aided Hurst who rose well to put a well placed header into the bottom corner to send the United faithful into raptures.

It would have been easy for United to rest on their laurels having taken the lead so early in the second half, but again they came forward looking dangerous on the counter especially from the long ball from the back.

One such ball released Norton who looked odds on to give United a two goal cushion as he found himself one-on-one with Gainsborough ’keeper Barnes. But Norton opted to take the ball around Barnes instead of going for goal and saw Barnes do well to get something on the ball and kill off what was a good chance.

What followed was a generically good cup tie, with Gainsborough looking to get back in it, but United not being overawed and in all honestly looking the more likely to add to their goal tally.

Gainsborough ’keeper Barnes was lucky to stay on the field as he appeared to handle outside the box, but amazingly the referee saw nothing wrong with this or any of the other handball shouts the United faithful had during the tie.

Holden again tested Barnes with a header at the far post which should have been more of a test for Barnes, before Glynn Hurst fired a good shot in from outside of the box as United looked to make the win a certainty.

The second goal wouldn’t come for United though and going into stoppage time they were nearly caught by a late sucker punch as Zach Hibbert had to acrobatically tip over a header from Louis. It summed up how well United had played that this was one of the only real tests Hibbert had all afternoon.

The resulting corner saw Gainsborough throw everybody up in an attempt to get the goal but as United broke towards the empty goal vacated by Barnes the referee blew the whistle for another famous cup victory for the Reds.

Attention now turns to Wednesday’s league fixture against Buxton, but firstly to Monday’s draw and dreams of Wembley.

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First Posted ~ 08:10 Mon 27 Sep 2010
News ID ~ 3123
Last Updated ~ 12:36 Mon 21 May 2018