Pontefract Collieries players earn plaudits after FA Cup heroics continue

Pontefract Collieries manager Craig Rouse.Pontefract Collieries manager Craig Rouse.
Pontefract Collieries manager Craig Rouse.
Pontefract Collieries manager Craig Rouse has saluted his history making players after the club made it through to the third qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup for the first time in its 63-year existence.

Colls beat Squires Gates 3-2 and have been rewarded with their first home draw in this season’s competition – and a first home tie in three years – when they will face fellow Yorkshire side Handsworth FC.

The tie is due to take place over the weekend of October 2 and the excitement is already building with the winners knowing they would then be only one more victory from the first round proper when the Football League clubs enter the competition.

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Colls boss Rouse was pleased for the players and the club that the FA Cup progress continued.

He said: “It’s obviously brilliant to make the history.

“It’s really important for us to get some wins under our belt and hopefully try to build a little bit of momentum and secondly it’s important for the finance for the club.

“I’ve gone on record to say that these boys will come good and will create good moments for the club.

“We’ve obviously gone through a difficult period, but we’re coming out the other side of it. I feel the performances haven’t got what they deserved.

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“This performance obviously reaped the rewards so we’re pleased to make history and pleased to get the win.”

On the match itself, Rouse added: “It was a typical cup tie, both sides throwing everything at it and going end to end.

“After going behind to a sloppy goal we showed a lot of character to bounce back and go 2-1 up by half-time.

“The second half was more just about seeing it out. We found a third goal then we made hard work of it in the last five, giving a pen away and we were sort of backs to the wall for the last couple of minutes. It was a typical cup tie and it’s pleasing to get through.”

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Pontefract, meanwhile, have added defender Jack Shepherd to their squad after he signed following some impressive displays for Penistone Church.

Shepherd will be unable to play in the forthcoming FA Cup tie, but is in contention to make his debut in Saturday’s FA Trophy first qualifying round game at home to Yorkshire Amateur this Saturday. Colls also host Bridlington Town next Tuesday night.