Joshua Nichol (94)

Bottesford

Town

1-2

Billingham

Town

(53) Craig Hutchinson

(90) Luke hogan

Tom Dawson .1

Lee Moore .2

Mark Dixon .3

Jamie Davis .4

Matthew Crossen .5

(C) Stephen Oakley .6

Elliott Beddow .7

Jack Connor .8

Chris Dickinson .9

Craig Hutchinson .10

Luke Hogan .11

 

Ashley Lavan .12

Connor Dunlavey .14

Clayton McDonald .15

Aaron Foley .16

Lee Jones .17

1. Ross Coombe

2. David Below

3. Leigh Shickle (C)

4. Adam Chrostowski

5. Gavin Cox

6. Callum Turnbull

7. Romario Karabina

8. David Backhouse

9. Sam Moore

10. Edward Keenan

11. Liam Anderson

 

12. Philip Robinson

13. James Charteries

14. Ryan Bell

15. Ethan Stephenson

16. Andrew Farrey

Match Report

I am running out of superlatives to describe the enormity of the situation Billingham Town find themselves in. They started the FA Vase with 550+ clubs in the first qualifying round and are now down to the final 32 and into Monday afternoons fourth round draw. To Billingham's credit, Bottesford changed their approach to the game compared to previous league performances by showing Town plenty of respect. The home side set their stall out and were solid, organised but limited in terms of ambition. We knew Bottesford had sent a scout to watch our 7.0 win against Whickham and reacted to that game accordingly. Their plan was rather obvious - Stop Craig Hutchinson and deny Luke Hogan/Elliott Beddow time and space on the wings by flooding the midfield. It worked to a point in the first half but even then, Town were extremely unlucky not to be ahead by half time. An early goal in the second half and excellent game management from the players proved to be enough to see off our North Lincolnshire hosts. Billingham Town now have two character traits which is the essence of an excellent side. They can play fast, incisive and often devastating football but when needs must, they can battle, cajole and show a steeliness that was absent at the start of the season. Goalkeeper, Thomas Dawson...put simply he's the best in the division..nothing more to be said... Back four of Moore, Dixon, Crossen and Oakley... Tough, skillful, determined and strong. Midfield.. Connor/MacDonald/Davis/Hogan/Beddow... Power, articulated, speedy, and cultured. Forwards.. Dickinson/Hutchinson.. Visionary/clinical and industrious... So many assets... So many options. Today's win wasn't a classic, too much was at stake tactically and financially for that to be the case but the tense atmosphere was entertainment in a sense! The fourth round will take place on Saturday 7th January which gives Town a five week break away from the competition and plenty of time to prepare.

 

Billingham were quickly out of the blocks and almost took another early lead inside four minutes. Goalkeeper, Aaron Busby miscleared his kick giving Hogan the chance to race away down the left side. The winger layed the ball across for Dickinson and Busby redeemed himself by pushing the ball over the crossbar. Town looked the more dangerous of the two sides and Jack Connor tried his luck from twenty five yards without success. On seventeen minutes, an exquisite back flick from Hogan gave Hutchinson a sighter on goal but his lofted effort just lacked the height to beat Busby. Bottesford's first foray on goal came via a counter attack which left Mark Dixon with two men at the back post. Fortunately when the ball came across to Martin Pendleton, his weak header went straight at Dawson. Bottesford were quite happy to play possession football but their was no end product to their play. The home side had a lucky escape on twenty six minutes when Hutchinson's shot struck the inside of post, rolled across the goaline and then behind for a goal kick! Final chance of the half fell to Bottesford forward Louis Grant who turned Mattie Crossen on the edge of the box but his shot lacked direction.

 

HT Bottesford Town 0 Billingham Town 0

 

The resumption of play was a rather cagey affair and then Town took the lead on fifty four minutes. Bottesford had done well defending Dickinson's set pieces but this time Connor and Oakley were able to beat their markers allowing HUTCHINSON to tap home at the back post. The home side were rattled; Hutchinson headed over from a Dickinson corner and then Oakley headed wide from another routine cross from Dickinson. With twenty minutes to go, Town were playing a bit too deep but that was to be expected as Bottesford looked for a way back into the tie. The Poachers resorted to long balls, trying to get in behind Town's back line but the lads were resolute, denying the home side any clear cut chances. With time ebbing away, Connor launched a quick counter attack, releasing Hutchinson on goal. The thirty one goal man squared the ball for HOGAN who helped himself to his tenth goal of the season and game over!! Oh so we thought but referee, Edward Stapleton played a ridiculous amount of injury time, allowing Joshua Nichol to pull one back but thankfully Stapleton eventually blew for the final whistle.

 

FT Bottesford Town 1 Billingham Town 2

 

Graham Hutchinson

Press Officer