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The Emirates FA Cup

First Qualifying Round


Cirencester Town 3 - 0  Easington Sports


Click photo to view a slideshow of photos from the match

Match photos supplied by Graham Hill


Match report by Dave Pyzer


Easington Sports from the United Counties League – Premier Division South were the latest visitors to The Corinium Stadium for an FA Cup - First Round Qualifying tie and suffered a 3-0 defeat at the hands of their dominant hosts.


There was one change from the last match against Evesham United to the home side as former prolific goal-scorer Ben Whitehead had been re-signed in mid-week, albeit on loan from his current Club - Weston-super-Mare, and he went straight into the starting eleven.


Cirencester kicked-off proceedings playing towards The Arena end of the ground and immediately attacked down their left flank to the corner and after a sustained period of possession, switching to the right and back the ball was eventually crossed behind the goal.

It was clear after a few minutes that Easington’s plan was to frustrate the home side by massing everyone behind the ball and hope to counter quickly and as a result Cirencester continually worked the ball across the pitch, often in front of the visitor’s penalty area, looking for an opening.

Around the 15-minute mark a Cirencester free kick from the left flank was initially headed out by Harvey Billing but instantly fed back in by Tommy Anderson for an under-pressure Jake Lee to head over the bar.

In the next couple of minutes Joe Shepherd and Josh Parsons had shots blocked and Anderson sent a cross through the front edge of the 6-yard box without contact.

At the mid-point of the half Bradley Cox did well to clear a ball into the visitor’s box as he slipped over near the penalty spot and shortly after they mounted a counter attack that ended with an ‘offside’ decision.

Just before the half-hour mark Ben Whitehead fizzed a shot wide of the right post and had another parried by ‘keeper Adam Doyle but the former effort proved to be practise for later.

Another period of pressure resulted in free kick that Mike Pook delivered to the far-left post where Ellis Dunton rose to head against the top right corner of the goal-frame to rebound out and be re-cycled to the left flank where Dunton crossed to the far post for Shayne Anson to head into the arms of a grateful Doyle.

Dunton was involved in the action a number of times in the next few minutes and after a run down the left channel he slipped the ball through to Whitehead who fired narrowly wide of the far-right post.

Five minutes from the interval Cirencester finally made the break-through they had been searching for when Parsons slid the ball down the right channel to BEN WHITEHEAD on the edge of the penalty area and he produced a sharp turn to his left before smashing the ball inside the right post.  1-0.

A minute later Billing delivered a free kick from the left flank into the home box for Alex Harris to catch but as the half was drawing to a close Cirencester increased the pressure again as a Parsons shot rebounded back to him, he laid it into the path of Anderson on the edge of the area and Doyle dived to his left to keep it out leading to a corner kick from the right, followed by one from the left that once again Dunton headed against the top right corner of the goal frame.

Half Time:   1-0

Immediately from the re-start Cirencester were on the attack again as Jordan Morris slid the ball down the left flank for Whitehead to take to the corner before crossing into the box – cleared, recovered and switched to the right for Parsons to send into the box – defended.

In the first half Anderson had been working down the centre in support of the central strikers but he had switched to his customary right flank to continue his tormenting of left backs of recent matches, and after weaving to the by-line he crossed to the near post where Parsons’ effort was blocked, rebounding to a lurking BEN WHITEHEAD a couple of yards further back, and he wasted no time in smashing the ball into the roof of the net.  2-0.

Over the next five minutes Doyle was very busy as he collected a Whitehead cross, caught an Anderson cross and punched a Dunton clip to the back post clear, before saving a Whitehead shot on the turn.

Easington responded to the pressure as Henry Rose shot straight at Harris and they also mounted a move to the right corner as Adam Taylor charged forward. His resulting low cross was parried by Harris to Piers Walton who fired over the bar.

Shortly after the hour Morris played the ball down the line for Levi Irving to collect and play back to Pook who slid a precise forward pass to Parsons as he darted across the front edge of the visitor’s box to be upended. Despite shouts from the home support for a Penalty Kick the well positioned Referee (who had a good game) awarded a free kick that Doyle pushed wide of his goal for a corner kick which eventually reached Pook who shot wide of the left post.

Mid-way through the half Easington were awarded a free kick on their left flank that reached Rose but his header was straight into the arms of Harris.

This was followed seven minutes later by a corner kick from the right that reached Cox at the back post and his header struck the left post.

Within minutes another Cirencester attack led to a corner kick from the right that was driven to the back post by Pook for Dunton to collect and clip to the right post where LEVI IRVING leapt to head into the top right corner.  3-0.  

Cirencester continued to press and Easington managed a couple of quick counters with Taylor prominent in a couple of races with Morris to the right corner – one of which resulted in a low Billing shot towards the left post that Harris saved.

Full Time:   3-0

An all-round professional performance from Cirencester who dominated possession against opponents that packed their defence and mounted occasional counter attacks that rarely threatened the Cirencester penalty area. 


Attendance:     152                                                       Referee:   George Enever


Cirencester Town: 

 1.         Alex Harris
 2.        Shayne Anson
 3.        Jordan Morris
 4.        Michael Pook
 5.        Jake Lee     ©
 6.        Ellis Dunton
 7.        Tommy Anderson
 8.        Joe Turley
 9.        Ben Whitehead                                    40, 48
10.        Josh Parsons
11.        Joe Shepherd

12.        Josh Nelmes
14.        Tom Handley                     (Shayne Anson-76mins)
15.        Ross Gabriel                     (Joe Turley- 79mins)
16.        Levi Irving                         (Ben Whitehead-58mins) 76                                        
17.        Aidan Bennett
18.        James Mortimer-Jones                                   
19         Kevin Sawyer (GK)


Easington Sports:

 1.         Adam Doyle
 2.        Elliott Barton
 3.        Joe Eyre     ©
 4.        Harvey Billing
 5.        Tom Smith
 6.        Bradley Cox
 7.        Adam Taylor
 8.        Harry Walters
 9.        Piers Walton
10.        Lucas Northover
11.        Henry Rose 

12.        Brad Walker    
14.        Jack Fountain                     (Elliott Barton-66mins)
15.        Dan Middleton
16.        Jack Dark                           (Lucas Northover-66mins)
17.        Matt Hammond                  (Harry Walters-51mins)
18.        Jake Butler (GK)

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