Wealdstone 3- 0 Lewes
3 - 0
Wealdstone steamrollered past Lewes of the Conference South on Saturday at The Vale and fully deserved their passage through to the 4TH and final qualifying round of the FA Cup with a complete performance.
Wealdstone battered the Rooks panicky defence throughout and following a 4th minute opener from midfielder Chris O’Leary were never really troubled in what turned out to be a surprisingly one sided contest.
Stones, with skipper Jimmy Gray playing up front with Greg Ngoyi were otherwise unchanged from the side that has done so consistently well in the Ryman Premier so far this season. The ebullient home side were at the Rooks throats from the first whistle and took the lead after just 4 minutes play. A corner was won with Rooks immediately under pressure; Lee Chappell swung the ball in and Chris O’Leary powered a header past Rikki Banks.
Lewes won a free kick but then Ryan Ashe screwed a shot wide after Ngoyi had prised the ball away from a Rooks defender on the dead ball line.
Ngoyi was pulled back for offside minutes later when clean through as the young backline of the away side continually teetered. Rooks hit back with some neat inter passing in the midfield but couldn’t find a way through the well marshalled home defence with Alan Massey dominant and winning the aerial battle.
Rooks first shot in anger at Sean Thomas didn’t arrive until the 20 minute mark when Rob Fitzgerald was dispossessed outside the area.
But Stones roared back down the slope and soon doubled their lead. Lewes couldn’t deal with a long torpedo like throw from Chappell on the left and in the ensuing mayhem an eager Greg Ngoyi seized on a loose ball and shot home, the ball being helped into the net by a defenders leg.
Wealdstone thought they had a third just before the break but Ngoyi’s effort was ruled out for an infringement.
Lewes had their most threatening spell of the entire match just after the restart when couple of opportunities went begging, the second a good chance for Dan Royce with Stones defence not alert to the danger.
But just when the Rooks appeared to be gaining decent possession Stones killed off the tie with a swift counter attack. Ryan Ashe won the ball in the middle and released Kieron Forbes who raced toward goal outpacing the sluggish Rooks rearguard and expertly slipped the ball past the advancing Rikki Banks.
Dan Royce blasted over but too often Rooks were caught in possession by the tigerish play of a home side oozing confidence.
A free kick on the left by Lee Chappell almost allowed Ngoyi to again punish the away side but his strike was just wide of the mark.
Forbes then hit a magnificent long range effort that was destined for the far corner but Banks was equal to it and tipped over for a great save to keep the score down.
Stones continued to press the ball all over the park and appeared determined not to allow the away side any room to play their passing game with their danger man David Wheeler kept completely shackled.
With the game virtually won, play opened out as Stones were allowed the luxury of some silky passing moves but couldn’t add to the score. Both Managers made several substitutions, with Danny Spendlove, Ross Lafayette and Chris Ellerbeck brought on for the home side.
Lafayette almost gained his first competitive goal with a great long range strike after good work from Ellerbeck but again Banks excelled, tipping over.
This was an amazingly comfortable victory for Stones but earned through great work ethic, dogged pressing play and a watertight defence; they go into Monday’s draw hoping for another home tie.
Tuesday’s scheduled home match against Hendon is now off due to the Greens drawing their tie.
Wealdstone: Thomas, McCoy, Chappell, Fitzgerald, Massey, Ashe, Forbes, O’Leary, Gray, Ngoyi, E’Beyer. Subs used: Spendlove, Ellerbeck, Lafayette. N/u: During, Woods (GK)
MoM: Chris O’Leary