Match Report

Wingate & Finchley
S McCall 2, R Laney, A Rifat
N Muir 2
Match details
Competition: FA Cup
Date: Tuesday 05 September 2017
Attendance: 266

Hendon were knocked out of the Emirates FA Cup at Maurice Rebak Stadium on Tuesday night after a see-saw 120 minutes. It was a disappointing end for the Greens, but they paid the penalty for not making their second half domination count more.

Illness ruled out skipper Arthur Lee, a key absence, and although Casey Maclaren came into the line-up in his place, they are different types of central defender. Leo Pedro came onto the bench, but he was not required.

Hendon could have taken the lead in the opening minute when a chance fell to Keagan Cole. His strike was good, but Shane Gore was equal to it, making a fine save.

After a good first five minutes, Wingate & Finchley started to make inroads, though with Reece Beckles-Richards in a more central position, he was less dangerous than the first game.

The deadlock was broken after 20 minutes and Hendon must be thoroughly sick at the way it came about. A needless challenge just outside their penalty area gave Spencer McCall to reprise his free-kick talents, the only difference being this shot went to Tom Lovelock's left instead of his right.

Earlier rain made the pitch very slick and Hendon failed to cope with it as well as the more conservative Wingate & Finchley. All too often passes from green-shirted players zipped off the turf either out of play or comfortably into the arms of Gore.

When Hendon got a free-kick on the edge of the Blues' penalty area, it was deja vu all over again as Matt Ball's strike, although on target, was dealt with by Gore. His palms pushed the ball wide of the target but only just.

Cole had another chance in the 40th minute when he got himself into a good position. He worked a shooting opening, but the time it took allowed Joe Kizzi the chance to throw himself in front of the shot and block it.

Just before half-time, Wingate & Finchley doubled their advantage. A ball was played into the penalty area and Hendon had a couple of chances to clear the danger, but failed to do so. Profiting was Rob Laney who, having scored, taunted Maclaren, with whom he had clashed a couple of minutes earlier, for which he was yellow-carded.

Deservedly behind at the break, Hendon made a change up front, sending on Kezie Ibe for Reis Stanislaus, who had struggled to make an impact in the opening 45 minutes.

The Greens had to strike early to get back into the game, and they achieved it within eight minutes. Zak Joseph attacked down the left and when the ball reached Niko Muir at the far post, he drilled a shot beyond Gore.

Hendon took complete control of the game and there was wave after wave of attack, but the Blues' defence, ably marshalled by Sean Cronin in the middle of the back four and Ahmet Rifat just in front of him, just about held firm.

There were a few occasions when there were half-chances, but there was a lack of composure and they went begging. A rain shower made the pitch even quicker, but Hendon had the bit between their teeth.

However, with 15 minutes to go a wayward pass caused Ball to overstretch in a vain attempt to reach the ball. He got up gingerly, stretching as if he had cramped up or pulled a muscle and, although the change might have been made in any case, Ashley Nathaniel-George came on for him.

Things were beginning to get desperate as the rain poured down, but Hendon have a striker in a rich vein of form and if he is given enough chances he will score. With three minutes remaining, in a crowded penalty area, Muir had another shooting chance and the scores were level.

Once again Hendon could have snatched a late winner, but a cross fired from the right wing was just too powerful for anyone to turn goalwards. Deep in stoppage time, Hendon showed their intent by replacing Maclaren with Michael Corcoran.

The game winner came less than four minutes into extra-time. Wingate & Finchley, who barely had an attack of note in the second 45 minutes, had numbers in and around the penalty area and when the ball came to the edge of the box, Rifat scored with a sweet side-foot strike beyond Lovelock.

The goalkeeper's reaction to the defence's slowness to react to the danger was justified, but maybe the efforts of the second 45 minutes' bombardment had taken its toll.

It certainly seemed that way because Hendon weren't anything like the attacking force having gone behind for a second time. Former Hendon man Ben Pattie came on to add a physical presence to the Blues' attack, but the game was stretched without either team making too many openings.

In the second period, the Greens were again starting to look desperate for an equaliser and Wingate & Finchley found themselves in a few two-on-two situations. Another Blues substitute, Afolabi Obafemi, should have made the game safe, but he fired wide of an almost open goal.

But, in the last few seconds, with too many men committed upfield, Pattie, Obafemi and McCall had only two green-shirted players against them and the coup de grâce was applied by McCall.

Report by David Ballheimer : Not to be reproduced without prior permission

Match Highlights

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Wingate & Finchley

Home Squad
Shirt Player Info
1 Shane Gore  
2 Ola Williams  
3 Nathan Mavila  
4 Joe Kizzi  
5 Sean Cronin  
6 Ahmet Rifat  
7 Luke Ifil  
8 Spencer McCall  
9 Marc Charles-Smith  
10 Reece Beckles-Richards  
11 Rob Laney  
12 Ben Pattie for 9 , 96
14 Afolabi Obafemi for 7 , 81
15 De'Reece Vanderhyde for 10 , 107
16 Luke Alfano  
17 Vassile Mandeville  
18 Reuben Rabstein  


Away Squad
Shirt Player Info
1 Tom Lovelock  
2 Jake Eggleton  
3 Sam Murphy  
4 Dave Diedhiou  
5 Rian Bray  
6 Casey Maclaren  
7 Keagan Cole  
8 Matt Ball  
9 Reis Stanislaus  
10 Niko Muir  
11 Zak Joseph  
12 Leo Pedro  
13 Oliver Sprague  
14 Michael Corcoran for 6 , 90
15 Kezie Ibe for 9 , 46
16 Montel Joseph  
17 Ashley Nathaniel-George for 8 , 82
18 Cameron Currie