Harrow Borough seal FA Cup progress with penalty shoot-out victory

PUBLISHED: 08:13 13 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: Langney Wanderers 1 Harrow Borough 1 (2-3 on penalties)

It was so close to being yet another chapter in the all-too-long volume of FA Cup disasters for Harrow, the match against Sussex County League opponents finishing level after 90 minutes, but Borough prevailed in the ensuing penalty shoot-out, thanks to 17 year-old Southampton loanee goalkeeper Matthew Hall, who made three shoot-out saves to see them home.

Borough fielded seven starters from last season’s regulars. Kenley Maloney returned for a second spell at the club, and there were three newcomers: Hall; defender Babs Jarra, who wore the captain’s armband; and striker Liam Ferdinand.

Harrow had to contend with an artificial surface and a late-morning kick-off time, but were into their stride quickly to dominate the early exchanges.

Di Lucia in the home goal dived at Ferdinand’s feet, the new forward having been put through by a clever Frank Keita pass. Jordan Ireland then sent Ferdinand in, but he was stopped by a fine tackle by Lee.

Anthony O’Connor got the ball past Di Lucia, his cross found Keita but the incoming midfielder was stopped by a great block by Lagwai.

The Harrow pressure increased and two shots were cleared off the line, Ben Tricker’s by Smart, and Ireland’s by Rainford.

But after that opening quarter of an hour of dominance, it was the hosts who nearly went ahead, left back Ducatel trying his luck from long range and seeing his shot crash back off the bar. The rebound came to Bennett and his effort hit the post.

After that scare, Harrow recovered to dominate, but not to such an extent as before. Maloney rode a tackle and hit a low shot that Di Lucia held, with George Moore clearing up at the other end after Lewis Cole lost possession.

Bennett, and then Ducatel, shot over for the seasiders, while Ferdinand hit a cross-shot across the goal. Ferdinand picked out Moore who cut in from the right and hit a fierce drive that Di Lucia batted down.

Ferdinand couldn’t get Tricker’s pass under control on the plastic surface and lifted the ball over the bar.

Hall had some action when he saved at the near post from Broughton and then, in the last seconds of the half, came the best chance of the whole afternoon, Moore making a great run and crossing to the far post where, just a couple of yards out, O’Connor contrived to miss the ball altogether.

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The visitors may have heard some strong words at half-time, and started the second period on the front foot. Di Lucia saved at Ferdinand’s feet before O’Connor flashed a header over from a Lewis Cole corner.

Lee made a good block from Maloney’s shot, before Chinua Cole crossed for Ferdinand to glance a header past the far post. Maloney’s clever pass gave Keita a chance but his shot lacked power and was too near Di Lucia.

Moore had a left-foot shot blocked, and Ferdinand shot wide after a fine run from Chinua Cole. Harrow finally made the breakthrough after 69 minutes, Moore running on to Ferdinand’s pass to beat Di Lucia with a fierce 18-yard shot.

For a while it looked like Harrow wanted to extend their lead. Keita’s shot was deflected wide after good build-up from Moore and Ferdinand, and Ireland’s header crashed against the bar from the resulting Lewis Cole corner.

Maloney found O’Connor, who was forced to turn away from goal, but spun back to shoot wide. Moore had a left-footer saved, and then Lewis Cole found Ferdinand on the left. He cut in and struck a firm right-foot shot that Di Lucia acrobatically tipped over. But as the game moved into its closing minutes, Borough seemed to want to protect what they had and sat back.

They had a scare when Masikini got past Tricker but hit a poor shot that Hall saved easily.

In the 89th minute, Langney got a free-kick on the edge of the area, in a central position, and Smart hit a low shot that went between two of the Harrow wall, Marc Charles-Smith and Jarra, to beat Hall.

With the away support fearing the worst, Broughton shot high and wide before the full-time whistle went and the tie went to spot-kicks. Harrow went first, Ferdinand scoring, and when Hall saved from Stevens and Maloney scored, Harrow were in control. Broughton put Langney on the board but Keita scored the third for Harrow.

Masikini made it 3-2 with two penalties left for each side. All were to be missed. Ireland was foiled by Di Lucia, Hall then saved from Davidson. Charles-Smith could have sent Harrow through but a poor spot-kick was pushed away by Di Lucia.

So up stepped Marc Di Lucia (presumably the brother of the ‘keeper) to take the shoot-out to sudden death, but Hall made his third save of the five, to put Harrow in the hat for Monday’s draw.

The next round takes place w/c 21 September. Before then, Harrow open their league campaign with the long trip to Truro next Saturday. They will have to be – considerably – better if they are to return with anything from the trip to Cornwall.

LANGNEY WANDERERS: Neill Di Lucia, Ian Lagwai, Harry Ducatel (sub Adam Davidson, 86 mins), Dean Stevens, David Smart, Shaun Lee, Mohammed Mekawir, Callum Sheriff (sub Marc Di Lucia, 76 mins), Tim Bennett, Lewis Broughton, Alexander Rainford (sub Trey Masikini, 53 mins). Unused subs: Emmanuel Ubi, Stephen Harman, Ant Gill, Jordon Funnell.

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

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