|FA Cup Extra Preliminary Round||250|
|Saturday 18th August 2007||Whitley Bay V Dunston Federation||0-1|
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Match Report By Julian Tyley
Whitley’s hopes of another successful FA Cup run ended when they fell at the first hurdle. The records show that games against Dunston usually go the way of the visiting side and so it proved once again with Whitley producing what can at best be described as a disappointing performance. In marked contrast to the six goal thriller against Consett in midweek, this was a game of few chances which was settled by a solitary first half goal.
Whitley went into the cup tie without Mark Taylor and Robbie Livermore, both of whom picked up injuries in the midweek game, their replacements being Paddy Little and Marc Walmsley.
Whitley made the first opening after eight minutes when a shot from Gary Cook was cleared off the line. Three minutes later, Mark Sheeran was caught offside when Phil Bell delivered a good cross from the right.
In what was virtually their first attack, Dunston got the crucial goal after 13 minutes when Steve Pickering’s cross from the right was rifled home by Chris Laws. In attempting to clear the ball, Bay defender Tony Woodhouse picked up a nasty looking injury and play was held up while he received attention. Whitley tried to get back in the game and after a 20 yard shot from Cook was comfortably saved by Dunston keeper Andy Clark, Bell headed just wide from Lee Kerr’s cross. Kerr then brought a diving save from the keeper who needed two attempts to grasp the ball. Woodhouse tried his luck from distance but the ball just cleared the bar. Whitley continued to press forward and after Robson’s cross saw Bell test the keeper with a low header, the Bay were denied an equaliser four minutes before the interval when Sheeran headed the ball over Clark and into the net. The referee initially awarded the goal but his assistant raised a flag to suggest there had been a push on the keeper and the celebrations were cut short.
Whitley brought on Brian Smith and Chris Moore after the break but in a poor second half, there were even fewer chances with Dunston content to hold on to their lead while Whitley struggled to break down a determined defence. The only chance of note came after 73 minutes when Phil Bell closed in on goal, lifted the ball over a defender but could only lob it into the keeper’s arms. The introduction of striker Paul Chow failed to make a difference and so in marked contrast to last year when they reached the final qualifying round, Whitley’s interests in the FA Cup ended in the disappointment of an early exit.
WHITLEY BAY Burke, Little(Smith 45 mins), Cook, Rowe, Coulson, Woodhouse, Walmsley(Moore 45 mins), Robson, Sheeran(Chow 76 mins), Bell, Kerr.