First Team vs. Ramsbottom United (2 : 1)
Sheffield FC progressed to the next round of the FA Cup on Saturday, writes Stuart James, as they overcame Ramsbottom United on their own patch with a 2-1 victory. Reece Treasure opened the scoring for Club in the 31st minute, before Alex Meakin replied with a stunning 40th minute effort, but 15 minutes from time it was skipper Lee Cooksey who sealed the victory and a home date with Farsley Celtic in the next round.
Despite the swirling winds and driving rain that saw off the cricket match next door, the surface at the Riverside Stadium was in excellent shape, and was conducive to the passing football both sides employed.
Ramsbottom were the ones who looked the more threatening early on, with Paul Linwood finding space to get two unmarked headers on goal, neither however were dangerous enough to trouble Chris Butt in the Sheffield goal.
The visitors started to take control, but despite bossing all the territory and possession, it was the hosts who looked more likely to score, with Alex Meaney finding himself in prime position to score only to see his shot tamely gathered by Butt.
Club's wingers were causing problems for Rammy, with Matt Roney powering upfield with a 50-yard solo run before brought down on the edge of the area, Roney then picked himself up to curl the free-kick around the post.
The deadlock was broken just after the half hour mark, as Liam Royles combined down the left with Hafeez Hamzat who in turn delivered an inch-perfect cross, and steaming in to direct the ball home with a diving header at the near post was TREASURE to make it 0-1.
Referee Alex Kirkley provided the afternoon's comedy moment, blowing for the half time break a good ten minutes early, luckily his blushes were spared by his amused assistants who were quick to point out the official's error.
That moment of timekeeping calamity seemed to disturb the home side, and Sheffield should have taken better advantage as quick thinking saw Michael Towey set Ash Longstaff through on goal, keeper Chris Cheetham was up to job making a fine stop with his feet.
Five minutes before the real half time break United drew level, as MEAKIN found himself in acres of space 30 yards from goal, driving a fierce low drive that Butt was unable to keep out.
Sheffield started the second half with a great push, and were the first to press as Liam Royles broke up the field to put substitute Alec Denton in with a chance, only to see his effort blocked by Cheetham with Treasure unable to finish the rebound.
Moments later Michael Towey found himself in acres of space in the box, Lee Cooksey had a shot stopped by Cheetham, and in the mêlée that followed no-one was able to force the ball over the line.
Club got their just desserts on 75 minutes from a well delivered Matt Roney free kick, Pat Lindley headed goalwards with Cheetham flapping at the ball, COOKSEY was quickest to react to head into the net from five yards out.
The final fifteen minutes was a case of seeing themselves over the line, and Sheffield did enough, keeping the ball well away from danger to ease into the next round.
Ramsbottom United: Cheetham, Dunroe, Atherton, Scott, Bayunu ©, Linwood, Crankshaw, Meaney, Hart, Green, Taylor. Subs: Cliffe, Botham, Dickinson, Hartley, Seddon, Coulson, Hargreaves.
Sheffield FC: Butt, Turner, Hamzat, Lindley, Cooksey ©, Magee, Roney, Towey, Longstaff, Treasure, Royles. Subs: Dawes, Ingham, Ryan, Denton, Kray-Batousol, Ramsey, Goodwin.
|Lee Cooksey ©||more|