Potters Bar need to repeat FA Cup giantkilling heroics
PUBLISHED: 07:00 06 September 2017
If Potters Bar Town are going to repeat their FA Cup heroics of last season, they are going to have to do it the hard way.
Eoin Casey’s goal gave the Scholars an impressive 1-0 win at home to Bishop’s Stortford in the first qualifying round on Saturday.
Following their relegation from Vanarama National League South last season, Stortford now play their football in Evostik Southern League Premier Division, still one level higher than Bar.
And Bar’s reward for their giantkilling is a trip to another National South side, Hampton & Richmond Borough.
But if they need inspiration, Potters Bar need only look to last season’s run to the fourth qualifying round which saw them beat Bath City, another level two side.
Saturday’s victory in front of a crowd of 181 at the Pakex was hard fought in a game of relatively few clear-cut chances.
The hosts had early appeals for a penalty for an apparent foul on George Nicholas waved away and the first shot at goal came from Michael Murray in the 24th minute but it was straight at Blues’ keeper Tyler McCarthy.
And in truth it was probably the visitors who edged the first half but their only real effort on target came 10 minutes from the break, Berkeley Laurencin saved low down from Calum Expiteta.
Stortford started the second half brightly but the Scholars defence marshaled the strikers efficiently allowing only two half chances, one which flew wide and another smothered by Laurencin to deny Dipo Akinyemi.
The hosts nearly took the lead before the hour as Murray hit a long-range effort inches over the crossbar.
But they weren’t to be denied and took the lead on 65 minutes.
Evandro Delgrado raced down the right and crossed early for Casey to flick a header at goal.
That ran across to the far post but when Nicholas returned the ball, Potters Bar’s player of the month for August made no mistake, heading past McCarthy.
The visitors pushed forward in search of an equaliser but the Scholars’ defence remained resolute.
And the only real chance arrived in minutes from the end as Darren Foxley’s powerful drive was tipped over the bar by Laurencin.
Potters Bar are back in league action on Saturday when they host AFC Hornchurch.