By Stephen Burton
In association with:
ALAN McLEAN FCMA CGMA
Chartered Management Accountant
Emirates FA Cup Second Qualifying Round
Saturday, September 17th 2022
BLYTH SPARTANS 2-0 GUISELEY AFC
Goals from Michael Richardson and Lewis McNall ensured a dominant Blyth Spartans a place in the next round of the Emirates FA Cup at the expense of Guiseley.
Richardson headed Spartans in front five minutes before the interval to give Blyth a deserved first-half lead, before McNall got his second goal in a week to seal the win.
Graham Fenton named one change from the side that drew against Farsley Celtic in midweek with skipper Nathan Buddle returning to the starting line up in place of the on-loan Jack Bodenham who was ineligible.
Blyth suffered a blow early on as Danny Barlow was forced off 10 minutes in after suffering what appeared to be a shoulder injury after falling awkwardly, with Matty Cornish coming on in his place.
It was a cagey opening with neither side creating anything of note in the opening quarter of an hour, with the best chance falling to Buddle as he headed over from a Nicky Deverdics corner.
Spartans had a brilliant chance to take the lead on 18 minutes as the substitute Cornish produced a wonderful bit of skill on the left wing before whipping in a brilliant cross that JJ O’Donnell glanced agonisingly wide.
The chance seemed to spark the home side into life as they began to take control, passing with zip and forcing their opponents deep into their own half.
But Blyth were still frustrated in their attempts to create as Guiseley held firm, and it took a set piece for them to next threaten the goal.
A short corner was played out to Deverdics on the right hand side, his pin-point cross found the head of Buddle who headed over from point-blank range.
Spartans continued to have success on the wings and that’s how they eventually got their goal.
This time it was McNall who dropped out wide on the right and he picked out the run of Richardson through the middle who glanced a header into the bottom corner.
Blyth started the second-half as they ended the first, and Matty Elsdon thought he’d doubled the lead from a corner, but the referee deemed their had been a foul in the box and was subsequently chalked off.
Moments later Michael Liddle burst forward on the left and his cross was met by O’Donnell who nodded over as Spartans kept the visitors pinned back.
On the hour Cornish was unlucky not get Blyth’s second as he broke forward on the left but his shot was at a tight angle and was well blocked by Kyle Trenerry.
Guiseley improved shortly after and the previously untested Alex Mitchell had to be alert to block Ethan Vaughan’s back post header.
From the subsequent corner, player-manager Danny Ellis saw a header cleared off the line by Rhys Evans, before the ball was fired back in and headed off the bar by Jameel Ible in what was a major let off for Spartans.
In the 70th minute Blyth had a huge penalty claim turned down as McNall was sandwiched between two Guiseley defenders, much to the disbelief of the home support, although that was almost forgotten seconds later as Jordan Hickey leathered a fierce strike off the crossbar.
Spartans finally got a much-needed second goal after a throw-in found Cedric Main in the box, he laid it off to McNall who curled a brilliant strike into the top corner.
Guiseley should have got back in it on 83 minutes as Adam Haw glanced a header wide when it looked easier to score.
Blyth continued to dominate and saw out the final 10 minutes to ensure they’re in the hat for Tuesday’s Third Qualifying Round draw.
Blyth Spartans | Mitchell, Liddle, Nicholson (Evans 56’), Buddle ©, Richardson, Hickey, McNall, O’Donnell, Elsdon, Deverdics, Barlow (Cornish 10’ (Main 72’)) Subs not used | Gillies, Dopson
Goals | Richardson 40’, McNall 76’
Guiseley AFC | Trenerry, Sikora, Smith ©, Vaughan, Ellis (Nkem 82’), Ible, Johnston (Chimalilo 60’), Cartwright, Cassidy, Cadman, Crofts (Haw 72’) Subs not used | Demba, Hey, Prata
Referee | John Mulligan
Attendance | 584