FA Cup Second Qualifying Round: Yate Town 2 Bideford Town 1
YATE TOWN knocked higher league opponents out of the FA Cup for the fourth time in the last 12 months after James Harmer scored a dramatic last-minute winner against Bideford.
The Bluebells showed great character to come back after falling behind in controversial circumstances in the 28th minute with Harmer - the only player in the side who started last year's first round tie at Cheltenham Town - setting up Lewis Haldane's equaliser on 67 minutes before settling the tie with his first goal for the club.
Yate beat Oxford City at the same stage of the competition last year before going onto knock out then-Conference leaders Newport County and are on another FA Cup adventure after following up their win over Chippenham in the previous round by sending fellow Southern League Premier Division side Bideford to their first defeat of the season.
They will find out their third qualifying round opponents on Monday and are now just two wins away from joining League One and Two clubs in the first round for the second year in a row.
Bideford shaded the early exchanges with Craig Duff hitting Sean Downing's low cross into the box wide before Owen Howe got behind the defence and drew goalkeeper Martin Horsell, only for Mitch Harrison to be in the right place to clear his cross-shot with Kevin Squire waiting to pounce.
Yate were frustrated by several close offside calls but when Haldane latched onto Ricky Hulbert's through ball and turned Jack Furzer to have a clear sight of goal, goalkeeper Steve Oliver had to be at full stretch to keep out his shot.
At the other end Horsell did well to palm Downing's 20-yard drive over the bar before Bideford took the lead. A ball down the left channel looked set to be cleared by Yate defender Joe Chandler before he got a nudge in the back from Howe, who was allowed to continue into the box and slot past Horsell. In a frantic start to the second-half Oliver had to be alert to stop the ball creeping into the net by tipping over Hulbert's cross-shot.
Horsell then blocked Craig Duff's shot after Howe squared the ball across the box, with Bideford having claims for a penalty ignored as Squire went down under Harrison's challenge.
Harmer had a great chance when the ball fell into his path with just Oliver to beat after Hulbert's clever dummy from Haldane's cross, but his lob did not come back down quickly enough.
However, Harmer had a key role in Yate's equaliser, exchanging passes with Ross Staley down the left before sending a low cross into the box, where Haldane was on hand to tuck the ball away.
Almost immediately afterwards Staley's fierce 20-yard shot was parried away by Oliver and there were appeals for handball against Bideford's Ben Gerring as he controlled the loose ball in the box before clearing.
Although chances were sparse thereafter, Yate had the momentum and they found the winner in the last minute of normal time. Harrison made a strong run and crossed into the six-yard box with Harmer bundling the ball in.
Yate Town: Horsell, Felix, Harrison, Chandler, Seery, Abraham, Harmer (Rogers, 90), Bryant (c), Hulbert, Haldane, Staley. Subs not used: Jakson, Tippins, Lane, Wimble R Cousins.
Ref: Mr M Russell.
Gazette star man: James Harmer - Had a big influence in the second-half as Yate turned the tie around.
Comments are closed on this article.