Saturday, 3 December 2011

Stalemate in the Vase

Saturday 3rd December 2011
FA Vase 3rd Round
Greene King Park

Another home game for Oadby Town this afternoon, this time against former adversaries in the Midland Football Alliance Tipton Town in the 3rd round (last 64) of the FA Vase.  This is the first time since the 2004/05 season that Oadby have reached this stage of the competition.  A controversial 1-0 defeat @ Stourbridge ended the hopes of glory then. This time around Oadby have moved quietly into the third round with three one goal victories. First up was Huntingdon Town who were dispatched 3-2 here @ GKP. This was followed up by a trip to Leicestershire Senior League outfit Lutterworth Athletic who were beaten 2-1 and last but not least, just two weeks ago local rivals St. Andrews arrived at GKP and a superb effort from Jon Stevenson was the difference between the two sides. Tipton Town started out in the 1st round and have had two home ties so far. Fellow MFA side Highgate United were beaten by the odd goal in three and Bardon Hill were on the wrong end of a 5-1 score line in the previous round. With Bardon Hill exiting the competition Oadby are the last Leicestershire club standing. Both clubs had midweek matches to overcome with Oadby putting St. Andrews to the sword once again with a resounding 4-1 success in the 2nd round of the Leicestershire Senior Cup. Tipton meanwhile were in MFA action and came away from Stratford Town with a 1-1 draw.

I finally got round to watching Oadby @ Tipton Town last season and despite taking the lead were on the wrong end of a 6-1 thrashing. How things have changed? Despite Oadby being relegated the side now is unrecognisable from the one last season and the feel good factor (both on and off the field) is now well and truly back at GKP. 

An intriguing cup tie that ebbed and flowed at times, with neither side able to exert any superiority in the 1st half. Oadby took the lead in the 45th minute when Jermaine Gordon scrambled the ball home from a yard out.

Oadby's lead did not last long as Tipton equalised within five minutes of the restart. Nathan Waite finishing off a good move down the right hand side. The games main talking point came with 12 minutes remaining as Oadby sub James Miller was shown a straight red card. Despite going down to ten men Oadby looked the better side for the remainder of the 90 and had three chances win in the dying moments. Matt Moore had a shot saved, Matt Piper's chip from a tight angle failed to find the target and a Steve Fenton shot that was heading for the top corner was superbly saved by the Tipton keeper in the 4th minute of stoppage time.

Extra time and Oadby played the better football but Gordon had a shot saved and Jon Stevenson volleyed over. Tipton had their chances but the majority of their efforts were off target and Elliot Shilliam was the quieter of the two keepers.

Attendance: 167
Match rating: 7 out of 10

Replay Wednesday night and the tie I'm sure will have a few more twists and turns.

One sour note was that there was some racist chanting by the few Tipton fans that came across, referring to Leicester as Paki Land.


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