West 2-1 Golcar United – West Didsbury & Chorlton AFC

West 2-1 Golcar United

Saturday 22nd October 2022, FA Vase First Round Proper

West 2 (own goal 3, Elliott pen 82)
Golcar United 1 (Naidole 80)
Att: 720

West progressed to the Second Round of the FA Vase for the first time, thanks to Ben Elliott’s late penalty against Golcar United.

Chris Rowley’s side led for most of the game, with Elliott forcing an own goal inside three minutes. Daniel Naidole’s leveller with ten minutes remaining looked to have forced a penalty shoot-out, but only one spot-kick was needed as Elliott struck two minutes later.

This clash between two sides promoted from the NWCFL’s pair First Divisions last season – Golcar laterally moved to the Northern Counties East League in the close season – was hardly a classic, but West registered a win to make history and, just as importantly, respond to two consectutive defeats in other cup competitions.

West made an ideal start, as Elliott’s low cross from the right wing put a Golcar defender in a position where he could either turn the ball into his own net or allow Ezeikel Eme to score.

But the home side were unable to build on the early lead, as much of the ensuing first-half action took place closer to Andrew Jones’ goal. The Villagers carved out half-chances until the closing moments of the half, when a combination of Jones and a mass of white shirts somehow managed to prevent the visitors scoring from close range.

West improved after the interval but were unable to seriously test Golcar keeper Harry Stead, with Markell Foulds off-target from a pair of corners. The single-goal lead never looked entirely convincing, and the visitors hauled themselves level as the game entered its final act – Naidole connecting with a free kick and diverting his header into the far corner.

But there was barely enough time to consider a shoot-out as West snatched back the initiative almost immediatlely. Elliott was upended in the process of shooting, and the West striker picked himself up to send Stead the wrong way from the spot, scoring his 19th goal of the season in the process.

The Villagers lifted themselves from the canvas to eke out one final chance – Naidole inches away from repeating his leveller, but this time failing to make a decisive connection on a left-wing cross. West survived to reach uncharted waters in an FA competition for the second time this season, having also made a record run in the FA Cup.

West: A. Jones, Cook, Hancock, McKnight, Hampson, Foulds, Eme, Dickinson (Swift), Elliott, Davis, Miller (Delaney). Not used: Ryan, C. Jones, Gavin.

Eckersley’s Plumbers & Locksmiths Player of the Match: Ben Hampson.

What it means

We take our place in the FA Vase Second Round Proper draw, to be made on Monday 24th October.

What’s next

We return to league action on Tuesday 25th October, as Bury AFC visit M21 (7:45pm kick-off).

Chris Rowley reaction