Rampant Rovers see of Winsford in FA Vase
Buildbase FA Vase Second Qualifying Round
Winsford Utd 1
Gresley Rovers 3
Seal 48, Hart 53, Lee 72
Gresley Rovers made it six wins on the bounce after beating Winsford United in the BuildBase FA Vase on Saturday.
Falling behind for the second consecutive game, the Moatmen battled back with three second-half goals.
After Samuel Madeley put the hosts in front, two quick goals by Ryan Seal and Steve Hart immediately after the restart put the score in Gresley’s favour.
Nullifying Winsford’s attacking threat in the second-half, Kane Lee finished off the game with 20 minutes remaining, drilling his shot through the legs of Ryan Hamer.
Winsford had the better of the opening exchanges, having the first shot of the match. Ryan Jackson’s corner was only cleared as far as Daniel Boden, whose half-volleyed effort whistled past the top of the post.
Gresley responded well to the early pressure that they were put under by the home side, with Seal at the heart of back-to-back chances.
The captain created the first chance from a corner. Drilling the ball low into the box, Danny Munday’s diving header rattled the bottom of the bar, bouncing away from danger rather than over the line.
Playmaking from the middle, Seal created a brilliant chance just minutes later. Chipping the ball into Lee from deep, the striker got away from his marker before having his subsequent shot saved well by Hamer.
After creating chances in the opening 15 minutes of the match, Gresley seemed to lose control of the game, with the home side forcing the Moatmen to rush passes and play long balls up the field.
Joseph Duckworth then came close to scoring against the run of play for Winsford. Having his original shot blocked, his follow-up effort evaded the defenders, but hit the outside of the post.
Madeley then had a chance inside the box, but the striker scuffed his volley, with the ball flying away from danger.
The warning signs from Winsford and Madeley started to show, with the attacker punishing the Gresley defence soon after his previous missed chance. Duckworth’s searching ball in was latched onto by the poacher, who tapped home his shot past Charlie Leake.
After the goal, the Rovers’ seemed to be past their torrid spell but were struck by an injury to Alex Morris just before half-time, who is now an injury concern for Tuesday’s home match against Heather St John's.
Words of encouragement were shared at half-time by manager Carl Abbott, with the message from the boss inspiring a game-changing start to the second-half.
At the heart of the midfield, Michael Williams slotted the ball through to Seal, who dug the ball out his feet and drove the ball past the Winsford ‘keeper inside the 18-yard-box.
Hart, with eight goals in his last four games, then turned the score in the favour of the away team.
A phenomenal ball forward by Leake looped over the Winsford defence to the feet of Hart. Shrugging off his markers, the forward showed composure, rounding the ‘keeper and smashing the ball into an empty net.
The home fans thought they’d equalised soon after falling behind. On the right-flank, Jackson’s driven shot beat Leake in the Gresley goal, but the ball hit the base of the post.
The away section of support then went into raptures, but their short-lived celebrations came to a stop due to an offside flag. Given the ball by Hart, Lee’s cross-come-shot was put in by Lee Butler, who had deemed to be beyond the last defender.
Lee, the maker of the previous chance, shot and scored in the next. Williams, who assisted the first goal of the game, dribbled past two before rolling it to the striker. Hitting the ball low, his strike went through the legs of Hamer into the goal.
After the third goal, Gresley set a deep defensive line, frustrating the home side. Winsford struggled to create openings, with their best chance coming from Matthew Coughlan, with his tame shot from the left side rolling against the side netting.