Bideford v Bishops Cleeve: Quick-fire goals from Max Smallcombe help Robins into second qualifying round of FA Cup
PUBLISHED: 17:51 02 September 2017
The Robins will be in Monday’s draw for the second qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup.
Bideford booked themselves a place in the second qualifying round of the Emirates FA Cup this afternoon (Saturday) with a comprehensive win over Bishops Cleeve.
The Robins were 5-1 winners in the first qualifying round match at the Sports Ground against their Evo-Stik League South West counterparts.
After calls for his side to be more clinical going forward, manager Sean Joyce got just that. Craig Duff and Sean Downing gave them the half-time lead before Max Smallcombe – captain for the day in place of the suspended Matt Bye – took the tie away from Cleeve with two well-taken goals in quick succession on the hour.
Hinsa Gaye benefitted from some confusion between the Bideford defence and the assistant referee to pull one back for the visitors before Billy Tucker made it five for the Robins with an excellent header.
Bideford were more than good value for their half-time lead, and after a period of pressure, opened their account through Duff after 18 minutes.
Steven Reed’s cross from the left flank was headed back across goal by Downing for the striker to head home.
Ryan Turner had a couple of sights on goal, and forced some Bishops Cleeve keeper Elliot Seddan to make some good saves, but it was Downing who eventually doubled Bideford’s lead.
The forward met a Smallcombe corner at the back post, and while his headed effort didn’t get much purchase, he was first to react to the loose ball and prodded it past the keeper.
After providing for Downing, the Bideford captain ensured the home side were in Monday’s draw with two goals in two minutes on the hour.
Duff looked to be getting his second goal of the game when he was teed up with Seddan beaten, but his side-footed shot was met on the line by Jordan Staten. As good as the defensive work was, Staten could do nothing when the ball was met on the edge of the box by Smallcombe, who stroked the ball in.
The Exeter City loanee got his second just two minutes later, breaking into the box before blasting a shot into the corner.
The visitors pulled a goal back five minutes later, albeit in bizarre circumstances. Gaye took advantage of some offside protests against Joe Bates to break clear of the Robins’ defence, round Steve Oliver and steer the ball home.
The goal got Cleeve’s tail up, and for a 10-minute period they were the better side, but Bideford eventually got a hold back on the game. Dan Western saw a shot from 20-yards rattle the crossbar.
Tucker wrapped things up with five minutes later, getting on the end of a pinpoint cross from substitute Craig Veal and putting a well-placed header into the top corner.
Bideford: Oliver, Sampson, Reed, Downing (Veal 81), Allan, Harrison, Western, Smallcombe, Turner (Levien 85), Duff (Squire 74), Tucker.
Bishops Cleeve: Seddan, Butler (Stoddart 74), Tunnicliffe, Ford (Alder 85), Layton, Staten, Kennedy, Nutting, Sklenar, Bates, Jones (Gaye 60)