Chasetown FC earn FA Cup replay after Stalybridge Celtic draw

Chasetown FC love an FA Cup run and the Scholars more than deserved a second chance after a draw with higher ranking opponents Stalybridge Celtic.

Chasetown take the lead through James Dance. Pic: Dave Birt

Chasetown take the lead through James Dance. Pic: Dave Birt

The home side made a dream start with a goal inside eight minutes. Garfield Robinson’s free kick deflected through the defensive wall into the path of James Dance who took a touch and picked his spot past Tony McMillan.

But four minutes later the visitors were level after Francino Francis badly underhit a back pass leaving goalkeeper John Bateman stranded as Steve Tames had the easiest of finishes.

Garfield Robinson goes after the ball. Pic: Dave Birt

Garfield Robinson goes after the ball. Pic: Dave Birt

Celtic’s Bo Dixon curled a free kick low past the wall which Bateman pushed wide for a corner from which Jack Higgins headed a whisker over the crossbar.

Stalybridge turned up the pressure and had a goal disallowed after Bateman had saved a free kick but the rebound fell to an offside player.

Three minutes after the interval, McMillan dashed out from his goal and had to retreat quickly to push aside a fierce drive from Simon Brown.

After a period of stalemate, Dance helped the ball into the path of Francis whose acrobatic overhead kick was easily held by McMillan.

With 15 minutes remaining, Celtic skipper Matt Hughes forced Bateman to superbly palm his header over the crossbar.

In the dying seconds Stan Mugisha broke clear and skewed a shot wide with substitute Nathan Waite screaming for a pass as the sides saw out a draw and Tuesday’s replay.

Chasetown: Bateman, Williams, Haynes, Thompson, Francis, Brown, Robinson (Waite, 82 mins), Davies, Mugisha, Dance, Gould (Edwards, 73 mins). Subs not used: Wynter, Butler, Pond.

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