Hayes 0 Rushden & Diamonds 1

Match Report courtesy of Unofficial Rushden & Diamonds Website (1997-2001)

FA Umbro Trophy

6th January 2001 – Church Road (Attendance: 750)

Diamonds Scorers: Darby

Webmaster’s MoM: Turley

Match Report by Chris

Diamonds moved into the 4th round of the F.A. Umbro Trophy thanks to Duane Darby’s precise lob 5 minutes before the interval.

This was a typical example of a game of two halves and a tale of two goalkeepers who were in excellent form. With the wind at their backs, Diamonds dominated the first half while Hayes enjoyed more of the advantage in the second period on what was a bitterly cold afternoon.

This was a scrappy match played on a bumpy, unpredictable surface and certainly not one for the football purist. Manager Brian Talbot was able to name an unchanged team for the 4th consecutive match and used the same 16 players that were on duty at Southport last week.

Diamonds produced the first shot of the game when Tarkan Mustafa ended a fine run with a third minute effort that went over the bar. Six minutes later, Diamonds survived a double scare. Errol Telemaque intercepted Jim Rodwell’s back pass but Billy Turley was able to push the shot away. However, the ball fell to Lee Boylan whose cross came back off the bar.

That was the last real attacking threat from Hayes during the first half as Diamonds increased the tempo and began to dominate proceedings. After 19 minutes, the unmarked Darby headed Justin Jackson’s cross over the bar while ten minutes later keeper Paul Gothard made a fine diving save to deny Ray Warburton’s header from Jon Brady’s free kick.

Gothard was being kept busy throughout the opening period and the keeper had to be alert again on 35 minutes. Andy Burgess put in an excellent diagonal cross to Brady on the right and when the Australian cut in, Gothard did well to turn the shot away. Two minutes later, after Jackson was tripped on the edge of the penalty area, Gothard denied Brady again when he pushed the midfielder’s free kick away for a corner.

Diamonds did take the lead in the 40th minute. Gothard cleared the ball up field but only as far as Garry Butterworth. The midfielder played the ball back over the top of the Hayes static defence allowing Duane Darby to run on and coolly lob the advancing keeper from 20 yards for his 13th goal of the season.

Hayes replaced Telemaque with leading scorer Dave Stevens at half time and his introduction seemed to provide the spark that the Middlesex team was looking for. Turley turned Boylan’s 48th minute shot over the bar while six minutes later the same player latched onto Mark Molesley¹s pass but couldn¹t keep his shot down.

Stevens’ first real contribution was to pick up a yellow card after his late challenge on Mustafa but it wasn’t long before Hayes were forcing the pace again as they attacked with the wind in their favour. On the hour, Steve McKimm turned sharply and tested Turley with a long-range effort, which the keeper turned over the bar. From the resultant corner, Turley produced a superb save to claw away a Dean Coppard header.

The home side were having far more of the possession in the second half but were dealt a blow on 64 minutes. Following a wild challenge from Brendan Gallen, manager Terry Brown took exception to the award of a free kick. Referee Yerby tried to calm the situation with a pep talk but Brown continued to complain and was promptly despatched to the stands.

Diamonds had very few attacking opportunities in the second half but from one of them in the 67th minute they almost doubled their lead. Burgess and Paul Underwood combined down the left, Darby fed Jackson but the Hayes defence crowded out the Conference leading scorer as he prepared to shoot.

The remainder of the game belonged to the Diamonds defence as they thwarted any chance of an equaliser. Although Hayes forced ten corners in the second half, they never really created a clear chance at goal. It was, perhaps, ironic that in the dying seconds, Jim Rodwell made a fine saving tackle to deny substitute Dave Stevens as Hayes pressed in vain for an equaliser.

So Diamonds go into the hat for the fourth round and with 9 Conference sides already out of the running this might be Rushden & Diamonds year for the F.A. Umbro Trophy.

Diamonds Team: Turley, Mustafa, Underwood, Carey, Rodwell, Warburton, Butterworth, Brady, Jackson, Darby, Burgess. Subs: Sigere, Peters, Butcher, Setchell, Rogers.

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