Hard-fought win lifts spirits of Magpies
Rene Kendall RIDGEONS LEAGUE: DEREHAM'S spirit was lifted on Saturday when they recorded a victory in their FA Cup Extra Preliminary round tie against Debenham LC. In the Magpies first ever visit to the Division One side's Maitlands ground, they just did enough to win the tie.
DEREHAM'S spirit was lifted on Saturday when they recorded a victory in their FA Cup Extra Preliminary round tie against Debenham LC.
In the Magpies first ever visit to the Division One side's Maitlands ground, they just did enough to win the tie.
However, had it not been for some good goalkeeping and missed chances the margin of victory could have been greater.
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A solitary 42nd minute Simon Mowbray strike was all that separated the teams at the end.
The striker took his goal well cutting in from the left before beating home keeper Ellis with a superb 20-yard drive.
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The excellent Ellis had denied Dereham in the sixth minute following possibly their best move of the match.
Adam Smith crossed to the far post where Craig Terrington played a neat one-two with Mowbray before picking out Sam Willis whose downward header looked a goal all the way until Ellis sprung to his left to make a brilliant save.
Throughout the match, Dereham never quite got their usual fluent passing together and this gave Debenham plenty of possession of the ball.
Keeper John Higgs bounced back from his disappointing display against Wisbech with a good, solid performance that included a vital 15th minute save from Debenham's prolific marksmen Stuart Jopling.
The win should hopefully restore some of the players' early season confidence.
Dereham now play Stamford at home in the next round next Saturday kick-off 3pm.
Manager Matty Henman was happy with the performance.
“At times the game was scrappy but on a narrow pitch this was going to be the case,” he said.
“Their keeper made three great saves which kept them in the game and prevented us from scoring the decisive second goal.
“Higgsy played well for us, he organised the defence well throughout.
“We defended solidly against their direct approach.
“We deserved to win by more but the main thing was to win to put the two previous games behind us,” Henman added.
As Norwich United and Wisbech drew last Saturday in the cup our scheduled tie against the Planters on Tuesday was cancelled due to their replay.
After today's game at Whitton, Dereham play another of the newly promoted teams Ely City at Aldiss Park on Tuesday night kick-off 7.45pm before the home cup match next Saturday.
As well as the glory the FA Cup also provides us with the chance of making a bit of cash to boost club funds which is always welcome.
With several of the Magpies rival clubs rumoured to be handing out silly money to players this season's league programme looks like being a tough one.
Certainly the opening results have indicated this.
There must be at least six teams who would fancy their chances of lifting the trophy come May.