Substitute Luke Norris grabs the winner to send Stevenage into the Second Round of this season's Emirates FA Cup...
Boro’s attention turned to The Emirates FA Cup this weekend as a trip to Gateshead was on the menu in this year’s first round. Steve Evans opted for four changes from last weekend’s draw in Colchester, with Aaron Chapman, Dean Campbell, Jamie Reid and Saxon Earley returning to the starting eleven.
The heavens opened as the game got underway, with Boro fans witnessing from an uncovered stand. Despite early pressure from Stevenage, it was Gateshead who got the first real chance of the game. Dan Ward received the ball on the edge of the area, but his first-time effort deflected past the post.
Boro grew into the game after a tough fifteen minutes. Alex Gilbey, Dean Campbell and Jordan Roberts all took aim from range, but Gateshead stopper James Montgomery continued to deny an opening goal.
Twenty-two minutes in, Stevenage managed to open the scoring. The in-form Jordan Roberts gathered the ball on the left-hand side of the area before firing in off the far post to give Boro the lead.
Just over ten minutes later, Boro’s lead was doubled. The Heed’s Kenton Richardson was unlucky to witness his header fly past James Montgomery and give Stevenage a two-goal advantage. The visitors defended well for the remainder of the half to go into the break two goals up.
The rain had finally stopped as the sides came out for the second half, with Gateshead having a mountain to climb. Stevenage created the first chance of the half, with Saxon Earley’s effort from inside the six-yard area being superbly denied by the Gateshead stopper.
Just eight minutes into the half, The Heed got a goal back. Will Harris found the top right-hand corner to give his side a glimmer of hope.
Immediately after the goal, Stevenage looked determined to regain their two-goal advantage. Alex Gilbey tried his luck from the edge of the area, but Montgomery held on well.
Soon after though, Gateshead found their equaliser. Kamil Conteh’s long-range effort flew past Aaron Chapman to level the scoring.
Steve Evans then made a triple substitution as Danny Rose, Jamie Reid and Dean Campbell made way for Luke Norris, Jake Reeves and Michael Bostwick.
It was Stevenage’s own, Luke Norris who made an impact and gave Boro the lead. The number nine received the ball inside the area and found the top left corner to regain his side’s lead.
With roughly ten minutes to go, Boro’s Jordan Roberts was handed a red card, after a strong challenge on the half-way line provoked a reaction.
The Fourth Official revealed that there would be four additional minutes, as Boro were forced to defend with ten men. Stevenage managed to see out any potential danger as the referee blew his whistle for full-time and send Boro into the Second Round. Attention now turns to Tuesday as Charlton Athletic come to The Lamex for a crucial Carabao Cup clash.
Attendance: 1059 including 139 away supporters.