Saturday 29th September 2007
F.A. Cup 2nd Qualifying Round
Stalybridge Celtic: Gamble, Barwick, Warner, Dudgeon, Haran, Sykes, Ellington, Winn, Hall, Barlow, Roca. Subs: Parr, Burbeary, Paves, Middleton, Pearson
Hyde United: Craig Dootson, Chris Brass, Chris Lynch (Earl Davis), Craig Robinson, Peter Band, Mark Innes, Lee Cartwright, Dale Johnson (Chris Simm), Matthew Tipton, Gareth Seddon, Nicky Clee. Subs not used: Scott Warner, Gerry Harrison, Richard Humphries.
The Tigers made their second Cup exit in a week as they contrived to lose at Bower Fold in a game they should have had won in the first quarter. As it was they faded badly and in the second period never really looked like pulling the goal back.
All started so well for Hyde. In the first five minutes a couple of flowing moves should have had the Tigers ahead. Nicky Clee brought the best out of Paddy Gamble in the Celtic goal, but he probably should have scored. Gareth Seddon then went close before Celtic got a free kick midway inside Hyde’s half. Carlos Roca took it to perfection and Chris Hall was on hand to head a good goal on twelve minutes.
Hyde stormed forward down the hill with Dale Johnson, playing as one of three forwards, causing all sorts of problems for former Tiger Simon Garner at left back. Time after time Dale was brought down and it was not until the fifth foul and 43 minutes that referee Mr Edwards produced a yellow card. He had already produced one for Chris Lynch after an aerial clash before booking Ashley Winn and Paul Sykes in quick succession as the temperature rose with tackles flying in.
More flowing moves from Hyde saw Johnson bring out a great save from Gamble and then he produced another to keep out a Matthew Tipton header. Tipton was also close with a screamer just over the bar. However Hyde’s set pieces were poor and this is an area that Steve Waywell will need to concentrate on.
In the second period the game threatened to get out of hand with arms flying in many challenges and Terry Barwick was booked for a nasty challenge on Chris Brass, the third time he had been left prostrate on the floor. However Celtic were now winning the 50/50 balls as their confidence grew.
Johnson was still causing problems for Garner and after two more fouls he was given a final warning from the inconsistent referee, who should have got to grips with the game earlier. Peter Band and Craig Robinson were both then booked to bring the tally to seven.
Johnson was ultimately substituted and replaced by Chris Simm. He was immediately in the action and was clearly pushed by the luckless Garner in the area. He caught the defenders knee in falling and was left with a very bloody nose, which brought a new dimension to this blood and thunder tie. He twice had to change his shirt as the blood continued to flow. Hyde’s only reward was a corner.
Hyde threw men forward but the early impetus had long gone and it was Craig Dootson who was the busiest of the ‘keepers in the final quarter with a couple of excellent saves.
The Tigers dream of an FA Cup run is over and how they will rue those early missed chances.