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Match Reports

Report: Stevenage 2-2 Concord Rangers (5-4 pens)

7 November 2020

Jim Steele

Stevenage secured their passage to the Second Round of the FA Cup as they prevailed against Concord Rangers on penalties…

After Coker’s first half goal was cancelled out by Wall in the second half, the tie went to extra time where Boro took the lead once again, this time through Danny Newton. Just as it looked like Stevenage had a firm grip on the game, Martin’s close-range header levelled things again, sending the team’s to penalties.

Five expertly taken Boro taken penalties were complimented by Jamie Cumming’s superb save to send Stevenage through.

Alex Revell named two changes for game, with Inih Effiong returning to the team in place of Femi Akinwande whilst Tom Pett made his second debut for Boro following his return this week, in-place of Romain Vincelot.

Stevenage started well early with Elliott List’s pace causing trouble for the visitors, winning a free  close range in the 6th minute that Inih Effiong struck over the bar.

Concord Rangers went direct with their play, looking for the towering Alex Wall up front with the striker looking to draw fouls from the Boro defence early on.

New signing Tom Pett was looking bright, dictating the tempo for Boro in the middle of midfield alongside Arthur Read, with Concord Rangers happy to sit back.

The first close attempt arrived on 26 minutes with Marcus Dinanga receiving a low drilled cross inside the box, only to drag his effort just wide of the post.

Boro dominated proceedings and scored after 28 minutes, as Tom Pett danced past Concord defenders before producing a roulette turn and squaring to Ben Coker, who drilled his shot past Chris Haigh with some help via a deflection.

Stevenage attacked with confidence after the goal, with Dinanga’s ambitious long range strike tipped aside by a scrambling Haigh.

Boro were pegged back by the visitors with their first shot on target, as a low cross found an unmarked Sam Blackman in the box who set up Wall, converting into an empty net.

Concord Rangers started brightly in the second half, with Wall producing a smart save from Jamie Cumming two minutes after the restart.

Captain Scott Cuthbert was forced off 50 minutes in after picking up a hamstring injury, with Ross Marshall coming on as a replacement.

Pett continued to impress as Boro persisted in piling on the pressure, playing a delicate chip over the Concord defence met by List, who was swarmed by opposition defenders and unable to produce a shot.

Wall nearly gave the visitors a shock lead, fed through on the right hand side by Odei Martin, drilling a shot into Cumming who saved well.

Pett was unfortunate not to regain Boro’s lead minutes later, curling a shot past a helpless Haigh, drifting narrowly wide of the post.

Play was halted after substitute Aramide Oteh was caught by an onrushing Haigh in a nasty collision, with both players clearly hurt after the coming together.

Both teams created little in the final minutes, meaning extra time was required.

Elliott List had the first chance of extra time, as a header from Tosan Popo fell to the winger who blazed his effort over the bar.

Stevenage retook the lead after Oteh found substitute Danny Newton with his back to goal, leaving the striker with an easy finish for his first goal of the season.

Stevenage came close to ending the tie, with Oteh spurning a great chance minutes after the restart and Elliot List missing from close range.

Concord Rangers fought back to level up with 10 minutes left, as a high cross found Odei Martin who nodded into an empty net.

Oteh produced two fine stops from Haigh in the final minutes with Lamar Reynolds also coming close, but the tie had to be settled by penalties.

After a nervy contest, Boro prevailed on penalties, with Oteh scoring the winning penalty to send Boro through to Round Two.

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