Brave effort but no shock as Welwyn bow out of FA Cup at Premier Division Wingate
PUBLISHED: 13:37 25 August 2019 | UPDATED: 13:37 25 August 2019
Two second-half goals ended Welwyn Garden City's involvement in the FA Cup early as they lost 2-0 at Wingate & Finchley.
It was also going to be tough, drawn away to one of the few step three sides to be placed in the preliminary round draw, but the Citizens were more than a match for their loftier hosts during the first half and for most of the contest in general.
And the confidence carried into the game at Summers Lane from Southern League Division One Central wins over Wantage Town and Biggleswade will not have been destroyed by the loss.
In fact their resolve to go on and perform better in the league may have even been strengthened.
City midfielder Jess Walklin had the game's opening chance, bursting through the middle of the pitch.
But his well-struck effort was just too straight and the experienced home goalkeeper Shane Gore saved all too easily.
A flurry of bookings, WGC's Dylan Ebengo and manager Nick Ironton joining former Potters Bar Town striker Marvin Morgan in seeing yellow, added some spice to the game and Welwyn continued to be more than happy to go toe-to-toe with the Isthmian Premier Division outfit.
Good link-up and interplay involving Toby Cleaver, Dave Keenleyside and Walklin created an opening for Jay Rolfe whose cross-shot had Shane Gore scurrying across his goal as the ball sailed over the bar and onto the roof of the net.
The hosts had to wait until the 23rd minute for their first attempt but it was an easy enough attempt for Charlie Jones to hang onto.
The next one from Morgan, a few moments later, however, needed a much better save.
Cleaver forced Gore into a smart save at his near post and the Blues keeper denied his opposite skipper Keenleyside as the half drew to a close.
The go-ahead goal came five minutes after the break. A quick break by the hosts saw Alphonso Kennedy skip past the challenges of Jay Rolfe and In-form Eusebio Da-Silva set-up Cleaver but Gore was equal to the task once more and his goal began to lead a charmed life as a scramble following a George Ironton free-kick was cleared.
But directly from that let-off, Wingate put the game to bed as two swift passes sent Kennedy away and he found Olumide Oluwatimilehin to end WGC hopes.
Welwyn are back in league action tomorrow when they host early leaders Berkhamsted at Herns Lane. Kick-off is at 3pm.