FA Cup: Hendon 3 Deeping Rangers 2
PUBLISHED: 17:43 22 September 2019 | UPDATED: 17:43 22 September 2019
Hendon advanced into the third round qualifying of the Emirates FA Cup, but made enormously hard work of beating Uhlsport United Counties League Premier Division Deeping Rangers at a hot and humid Silver Jubilee Park on Saturday.
The Greens made a number of changes from the team which had produced such a disappointing second half against Dorchester as Lee Chappell and Francis Amartey were left out ofn the 18, while Ram Marwa dropped to the bench as Sam Corcoran, Tom Nyama and Kam English came in.
Runners-up last season, Deeping have been built into a very efficient and effective club by manager Michael Goode, as FA Cup victories over Bedford Town and AFC Sudbury (both a step above them) show.
They have also enjoyed continuity of selection, though they were missing a couple of regulars, one of whom could not get the time off work to make the trip to London.
The Clarets made a bright start and had three good chances in the first 20 minutes as Jordan Macleod made good space for himself and drilled a low cross which was just too far in front of Scott Mooney, but went just beyond the far post.
In the eighth minute, Chris Grace tried to reach a cross from the left wing, but a crowd of players, most notably Mooney, blocked him off. The ball bounced down for Sam Murphy, who fired a shot but a green-shirted player was able to deflect the ball away for corner.
Deeping continued to set the pace and Dan Jarvis was next to try his luck. His effort had the power but not the angle to beat Grace and remain on target, the ball flying just over the crossbar.
Midway through the half, the Clarets had the lead their efforts deserved. A quick attack down the right flank saw Jack Gurney given time to deliver an inch-perfect cross, which was headed into the net by MacLeod, whose only challenge for the ball came from team-mate Mooney.
It took almost half an hour for Hendon to put together a move of any great quality, involving Nyama, Calcutt, Harriott and Ryan Hope, and when the ball was crossed in low towards the near post, Aaron Davies did well to get his boot to the ball to divert it away for a corner.
In the 32nd minute, things got a whole lot worse for Hendon as Deeping attacked from deep.
Jarvis helped the ball out to the right side, continued his run and when he received a return pass from Murphy, Nyama was out of position and couldn't reach the ball.
Taking a touch to control the ball and balance himself, Jarvis drilled a beautiful low shot into the bottom corner, beyond Grace's dive. Before play could resume, Nyama, feeling dizzy and dehydrated, went off and Luca Valentine replaced him.
The substitute did come close to reducing the arrears in what turned out to be seven additional minutes at the end of the half as he fired in a low shot, but Lewis Elsom made a spectacular low save.
Later in stoppage time, English made a good run, but his shot was rushed and went some distance wide of the post.
Before the start of the second half, Dan Williams came on for Matty Harriott, who had needed to pass a pre-game fitness test for a muscle injury, but which had become more uncomfortable as the half progressed.
The energy provided by Hendon's two substitutes played a big part in the home side's turnaround.
The first goal, however, had more than a hint of good fortune about it.
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Within 40 seconds of the restart the Greens forced a corner. Charlie Smith curled in the ball and Jarvis, under pressure from Luke Tingey, had the misfortune to beat Elsom, who barely moved as the ball sped past him.
For the next 10 minutes, Williams and Valentine were front and centre as Hendon took complete control. In the 49th minute, Williams made a powerful burst but could not keep his shot down.
He then ran onto a through ball and, leaping to head the ball, just beat Elsom on the edge of the penalty area. There was little power in Williams' header and a defender cleared the danger before the ball crossed the line.
After Williams had put a header over the crossbar, Valentine forced a good save from Elsom. However, a moment's loss of concentration in defence gave Mooney the chance to shoot and Grace was grateful the ball crashed into the railing beside and behind the goal.
Hendon drew level in the 67th minute and although English will get the credit for the goal, the plaudits should go to Calcutt.
He won a header on the right wing, just inside the Deeping half, then kept his balance and retained control before delivering a low cross right into the path of English, who finished emphatically. Deeping defenders felt Calcutt had fouled the defender in the aerial challenge.
Three minutes later, Hendon were in front as they kept the ball well and Howard Hall knocked the ball towards the danger zone. English, in the D of the penalty area, brought down the ball in front of Luke Hunnings, went to his left, and turned into the penalty area, dragging two more defenders towards him. He then rolled a beautifully weighted pass into towards Calcutt, who fired the ball into the net.
Chasing the game, Deeping made a couple of changes, Michel Simpson and Ryan Olbromski replacing Charlie Coulson and Luke Anderson, respectively.
Marwa took over from Corcoran for Hendon at the same time as the second Clarets change, and they made their third one a short while later, Matt Carter coming on for Gurney.
Simpson and Mooney very nearly combined for an equaliser, but Grace produced a stunning save to push aside Mooney's deflection of Simpson's shot. Hendon had a few chances to stretch their lead, but Elsom made one good save and others flew narrowly wide of the target.
There was no easy seeing out of the game for the Greens. Deeping twice should have equalised but defenders made goal-line clearances, the second one an almost slow motion action involving Mooney stretching for a tap-in and the defender knocking the ball away from him at the last second.
Manager James Gray made an honest assessment, tweeting: "Our Jekyll and Hyde season continued. At times truly abysmal, at times electrifying, individual error strewn, individually brilliant at times.
"This group has all the ingredients, but must become consistent. When the fans got behind us it made for a great comeback."
Speaking also on the club's video feed, he said: "That was a real cup-tie. It was end to end, and the underdog gave us a massive scare and we did just enough to get the result at the end. In the first half we were so disappointing.
"All credit to Deeping Rangers. They came here and played some nice football, scored a couple of good goals and put us under the cosh.
"It was a tough half-time team-talk. I didn't go in there ranting and raving, I just asked the boys what they could find within themselves to come back and get a result, whether it was a draw and a replay or to win it.
"We really need to get a 90-minute performance. We can't give 45 minutes here and 30 minutes there because, at our level, we'll come unstuck.
"But this is the FA Cup. It is important to win the game and we did that and we are in the draw for the next round."
Hendon: Grace, Hall, Smith, Corcoran (Marwa 82), Hamblin, Tingey, Hope, Harriott, (Williams 46), Calcutt, Nyama (Valentine 33), English. Unused subs: Jonas, Dickinson, Gardiner, McGleish.