Harrow Borough progress in the FA Cup with Beaconsfield victory

PUBLISHED: 11:49 22 September 2020

Harrow Borough manager Steve Baker (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

Harrow Borough manager Steve Baker (pic: Gavin Ellis/TGS Photo)

©TGS Photo +44 1376 553468

FA Cup: Beaconsfield Town 0 Harrow Borough 2

A blitzkrieg start from Harrow, with a Liam Ferdinand brace in the opening 17 minutes, saw them progress another round into this season’s FA Cup on a warm evening by the M40 in Buckinghamshire.

Steve Baker made four changes to the side that had performed so well in defeat at Truro on Saturday. Kensley Maloney replaced the injured Sam Gubbins in midfield, Frank Keita came in for Michael Bryan and, up front, Ferdinand partnered Brendan Matthew with Marc Charles-Smith and Anthony O’Connor dropping to the bench.

If the instruction was ‘hit them hard, hit them early’ then it was certainly carried out to perfection as Borough rocketed out of the traps.

Forster in the home goal had to made a good claim of a dangerous George Moore delivery, the Borough wing-back then driving a cross-shot past the far post from Ferdinand’s pass.

Matthew delayed his shot when giving a glimpse of goal by Ferdinand’s lay-off, before Harrow broke through in the 11th minute, Ferdinand sent clear of a square home back-line to calmly slot the ball past Forster.

Harrow sensed blood and pressed for a second. Maloney spotted Forster too far to the left of his goal as he sized up a free-kick, and was inches away from catching him out with a clever delivery that went into the side-netting.

Beaconsfield’s first chance of the evening came when Minhas got up to a near-post cross but put his header over.

Harrow doubled their lead in the 17th minute as Maloney found Ferdinand in the inside-left channel on the edge of the box, and the summer arrival from Hungerford brushed aside a challenge to fire a right foot shot low last Forster’s left hand.

A long break in play saw home manager Gary Meakin lectured, twice, and one of the home substitutes yellow-carded. When play resumed, a fine Lewis Cole tackle stopped a dangerous home attack, before Chinua Cole’s great run took him to the left-hand by-line, his low pull-back evading his incoming colleagues.

Matthew Hall made a fine save to claw away a far post header from Taylor before Harrow pressed again, Ferdinand’s strength holding off a challenge, to send Keita in on the right, his low-cross met by a combination of Matthew and the hosts’ Webb at the far post, the ball flying wide.

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Hall saved from Minhas before the half ended with a fierce shot from Moore stinging the palms of Forster.

Beaconsfield introduced the veteran Louis at half-time, and came hard at the visitors in the opening quarter of an hour, with Harrow’s passing not of the standard it had been in the first half. Ben Tricker made a great diving block to stop Minhas’s angled shot, the ball was netted from a right-wing cross but disallowed for a foul on Hall, and Losasso hit a free-kick wide.

Harrow got through that period unscathed and got back into the game. Moore’s shot was blocked before Keita surged into the box on the right. He was hauled down by the giant Brown, once of Harrow, and it looked a penalty, but referee Cresswell thought differently and waved play on.

Louis shot across goal for the Rams, and Moore then made a fantastic run to get to the right-hand by-line, driving the ball across the goalmouth but with no Harrow forward on hand to touch it home.

In the closing minutes, more home pressure saw one shot deflected over the bar and Neville’s header go the same way.

A superb, brave block by Borough skipper Babs Jarra epitomised the commitment of the Harrow performance before the final whistle went to cue celebrations from players, staff and a sizeable Harrow following.

Harrow will know by the end of the week who they have in the next round which will be played over the weekend of 3-4 October.

But before then, there are two important league games, the first being the opening home game of the campaign when Salisbury visit Harrow.

There were more people at Holloways Park than is usual at Beaconsfield (not that, 12 hours after the game, an attendance has been published), so maybe supporters of Premier and Football League clubs are looking to non-league to get a fix of live football action at present: certainly any such folk will be made very welcome at The Rogers Family Stadium this Saturday.

BEACONSFIELD TOWN: Adam Forster, Kane Guy-Seifert, Callum Webb, James Taylor (sub Alex Cathline, 75 mins), Luke Neville (booked, 48 mins), Bayley Brown, Aaron Minhas (sub Harry Scott, 64 mins), Ademola Shokunbi (sub Jefferson Louis, h-t), James Ewington, Charlie Losasso, Nathan Webb. Unused subs: Matthew Hall, Mihai-Andrei Chiriac, Jerome Eccleston.

HARROW BOROUGH: Matthew Hall, George Moore, Chinua Cole, Babs Jarra, Jordan Ireland, Ben Tricker, Kensley Maloney, Lewis Cole, Liam Ferdinand, Frank Keita (sub Michael Bryan, 76 mins; booked, 77 mins), Brendan Matthew (sub 12 Anthony O’Connor, 84 mins). Unused subs: Dan Purdue, Shaun Preddie, Marc Charles-Smith, Joe Owusu-Bardieh, Ramarae Griffith.

Referee: Mr A Cresswell

Att. n/k

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