Emley ease through replay against Widnes to book a trip to Mossley in the FA Cup

Magnificent Emley produced another stunning performance to thump higher ranked Northern Premier League side Widnes 4-1 in their FA Cup first qualifying round replay.
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It follows the last round 5-1 hammering of Lower Breck and last weekend's 1-1 draw at Widnes, in which Emley could have easily won the tie and sees Emley into the second qualifying round for the first time in over 20 years..

There were few worries in the replay as Emley left their higher league opponents well beaten and it was class on Emley's lush grass compared the slog on Widnes' unpredictable artificial surface at the weekend.

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Emley were right at it from the start, causing problems down both flanks and through the middle where Ruben Jerome bullied the Widnes defenders, there was not much goalmouth action but Emley had the upper hand, although the visitors did have a succession of early corners which Emley managed to deal with.

James Walshaw scored one of Emley's four goals in their FA Cup replay with Widnes. Photo by Mark ParsonsJames Walshaw scored one of Emley's four goals in their FA Cup replay with Widnes. Photo by Mark Parsons
James Walshaw scored one of Emley's four goals in their FA Cup replay with Widnes. Photo by Mark Parsons

Clegg had an early shot blocked and then Jerome and Metcalfe combined, but the final shot was off target. Saturday's hero, Donae Lawrence, was also wide with a shot before Emley's dominance finally paid off.

Widnes failed to clear their lines and the ball was recycled at the back post, James Walshaw then forced the Widnes defender to put the ball into his own net for an own goal and the Pewits were on their way.

No sooner had the Emley celebrations died down then they would start up again as they doubled the lead. Again, the defence failed to clear their lines, Ross Hardaker drilled in a low shot that was deflected into the net by Jerome.

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Jerome, who caused problems all night was then involved in a collision with the Widnes keeper who received treatment, the goalie would make it to half-time before being replaced.

The keeper would then make a good stop to prevent Jerome extending Emley's lead before Widnes then stunned the Fantastic Media Welfare Ground with a breakaway goal deep into added time. A ball down the right appeared to have been offside but the ref played on, they squared the ball into the six-yard area where Steele tapped in despite Stevie Smith lying prone and injured on the ground. Emley protested but the goal stood and the lead had been halved.

In the melee at the end of the half two red cards were shown, one each for the member of both teams' coaching staff as things got a bit heated.

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Within six minutes of the start of the second half Emley killed off the tie and booked a trip to Mossley in the next round.

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They played some really neat stuff, through the middle and out wide down both wings, Lawrence again showing up well with some powerful runs.

The Pewits struck for a third time and a lovely goal it was, Jerome, again, bullying the defence with a strong run down the right and into the area where a neat little ball found Walshaw who struck a delightful shot off the bar and into the back of the net.

It was probably the match winner as Widnes looked buried at that point, the Emley ultras in the shed were in celebratory mood and wanting more, and almost got it two minutes later as an attempted clearance was skewed horribly and only just missed the inside of a post as it went for a corner.

But the tie was well and truly put to bed in the 66th minute. Emley repelled a Widnes attack and moved the ball up field, right to left, Paul Walker teased and toyed with a defender before spotting a lovely bursting run from Lawrence who, without breaking stride, slotted neatly past the keeper to make it 4-1.

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Lawrence almost had another not long after, following another great move down the left, but he could not quite wrap a long leg around the ball enough and it squirmed wide.

To Widnes' credit, they did not give up and kept plugging away, but Emley's rearguard was too good for them, their best chance came late on but the hosts managed to clear away the danger from almost off the line.

Emley were content to play out the last 10 minutes knowing that a fourth North West opponent in this year’s FA Cup was waiting, Mossley will know that Emley will not be a pushover.

It is back to NCE league action for Emley next as they host Knaresborough Town on Friday night.

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