Nuneaton Town 0 Gosport Borough 0 AET (2-4 on pens)
Tuesday 17th December 2013 (FA Trophy 2nd Round Replay)
Match report courtesy of Nuneaton News;
A desperately depleted Nuneaton Town team were knocked out of the FA Trophy on penalties by Skrill South strugglers Gosport Borough on Tuesday night.
The hosts were without key players and it showed as they turned in a terrible performance against a deserving but distinctly average Gosport side.
It was 0-0 after 120 turgid minutes where the visitors could easily have won but for poor finishing and good saves from Nuneaton keeper Kelle Roos.
It went to the almost inevitable penalties and Louis Moult and James Belshaw, on as a specialist penalty taker, missed.
Gosport scored four of their penalities, giving them a 4-2 win and a trip to Calor League side Hungerford Town in the third round.
Boro’s desperate injury problems were there for all to see when the teams were announced as they were able to name just three substitutes, including a goalkeeper.
Top scorer Moult and strike partner Dave Hibbert were the latest to go down, Moult through illness and Hibbert due to a hamstring strain.
Moult was at least fit enough for the bench, but with Andy Brown (eye) still out, it was Freddie Ladapo and Connor Taylor upfront.
Manager Kevin Wilkin named a 3-5-2 formation due to their plethora of problems. Wes York and Danny Sleath were the wing-backs with James Armson moving into central midfield.
By the end of the game Theo Streete was on the list as he hobbled through extra-time when he really should have come off.
Injury problems were not confined to the host team as scheduled match official Richard Wigglesworth slipped on the way into the ground and hurt his head according to Boro officials. He was replaced by Matthew Jones.
The new shape did not work at all as Boro struggled terribly for any rhythm. Their only opening of the half came when Gaz Dean’s well aimed clearance released Ladapo.
He looked to be in on goal when he was hauled down by Brett Poate, but the replacement referee was unmoved.
When Gosport cleared Delroy Gordon’s back header fell short to put Dan Wooden in goal. He was the man who missed a one-on-one on Saturday and once again he put a glaring chance past the post.
That was on 17 minutes. Six minutes later the visitors slipped Jamie Brown in but Roos flew out to make a fine diving block.
The keeper denied the same player on the half hour as he took no chances, tipping over his shot from 25 yards.
The 3-5-2 experiment was then not surprisingly abandoned as Boro reverted to 4-4-2 with York making his first appearance as a right-back.
It was no better at the start of the second half, prompting Wilkin to introduce Moult with 25 minutes to play. York’s full-back stint was a short one as he went upfront in a switch to a 4-3-3 formation. Armson was the new right-back.
Gosport had a strong claim for a penalty turned down when Armson appeared to handball in the box but once again the referee was unmoved.
There was one final chance when Mike Gosney fired wide, but it went to the inevitable extra time. Boro picked up slightly in the first half as Adam Walker fired just wide and Danny Sleath saw a header saved – their first effort on target coming after 104 minutes.
Gosport could have won it with eight minutes to go when two players missed the ball at the far post, but it was not to be.
They had a final chance when Justin Bennett got away from Dean with two minutes to go, but Roos made another good save, blocking as he stood up.
As penalties loomed both sides made changes, including Belshaw for Boro with the shootout in mind. However, they were denied as Moult’s effort was well saved and Belshaw hit the post. Adam Wilde missed for Gosport as Roos saved. It mattered not.