GRANTHAM Town progressed to the third qualifying round of the FA Cup despite having to play the last half hour with 10 men after Phil Watt was sent off. Gio Carchedi struck 10 minutes after to send the Gingerbreads through.
Second qualifying round
Grantham Town 2
Grantham soon got on top and after only seven minutes claimed a penalty. A shot from Gio Carchedi appeared to hit a hand before Chasetown cleared it. Ben Saunders, Martin Ball and Phil Watt all peppered the Chasetown goal as Grantham made a good start to the game.
The home side had been reduced to quick breaks and from one of those after 16 minutes, Grant Brindley found himself battling Danny Smith, forcing Smith to shoot wide. On 23 minutes, a direct approach put Grantham in front. A long clearance from Rob Murray was won by Ben Saunders. His header found Paul Grimes who controlled the ball neatly and went for goal. Striking the ball from the edge of the Chasetown penalty area, he gave Ryan Price no chance.
After the half hour mark, Chasetown began to build some pressure. Richard Teesdale got the ball forward and Gary Birch headed it on for Smith, but Murray was quick enough. His defence did enough a minute later when Jordan Johnson squared a ball from Birch. Birch went himself 10 minutes before half time. From Price’s long free kick, Birch got to the ball first, but his header rattled back off the Grantham crossbar.
Birch’s header sparked a flurry of chances as Grantham broke straight away to give Carchedi a run at goal. Jack Farmer did enough to deny him. Straight away at the other end, Murray was alert to stop an effort from Smith and when play swung back the other way, Grimes fired over the top.
Grimes featured again late in the half when a mistake by Teesdale let Carchedi’s header through to him, but he shot across goal. He got a great touch on a Ben Saunders ball to turn it across the face of goal, but there was no Grantham player to tap it in.
Straight after the break, Chasetown looked a better attacking force. Just three minutes of the second half had gone when Birch and Smith exchanged passes. Birch had a clear strike at goal but shot wide. A cross from Jimmy Turner stretched Murray, and Johnson turned Sam Purcicoe before shooting wide as Murray covered the shot.
The game shifted Chasetown’s way on 59 minutes. Referee Mr Jones awarded the home side a penalty when the ball hit Brindley’s hand. The Gingerbreads were aggrieved that Mr Jones had not spotted the push by Smith that led to the handball and Brindley was booked for his protest. Teesdale scored from the spot.
Three minutes later, it looked worse for Grantham. Phil Watt dived into a tackle near the touchline 10 yards inside his own half and was amazed to see a red card, despite two other defenders in line with him in the centre of the pitch.
Chasetown thought they had taken advantage four minutes later. A deep cross was headed into the Grantham net by Ben Jeavons, but an offside flag had gone up first.
There was no doubt about the Grantham winner on 69 minutes. Chasetown centre half Matty Cohen tried to head clear, but only nodded the ball up in the air. It dropped perfectly for Carchedi to hit first time. His shot nestled in the bottom corner of the net with Price stood watching.
Eighteen minutes from time, it was the Gingerbreads’ turn to have a goal disallowed. Martin Ball played a through ball for Jamie McGhee that he tucked away well, only to find he had strayed offside.
As was to be expected, most of the last quarter of an hour was played in the Grantham half. Chasetown substitute Dean Perrow played a headed one-two with Jones but fired over the crossbar on the turn. Jevons then headed wide and Lee Potts stuck to his task well to deny Teesdale.
The home side became more frustrated as Grantham defended their crosses well. When the home side did manage to make a shooting chance for themselves, they missed the target. Teesdale, Johnson and Cohen all failed to stretch Murray as Grantham held out comfortably.
Grantham Town: Murray, Purcicoe, Potts, Brindley, S. Saunders, Watt, Lewis, Ball, Grimes ( Maddison, 83), B. Saunders (O’Rafferty, 89), Carchedi (McGhee, 71). Subs not used: Norris, Asher, Ward, Whitman. Att: 326.