FA Cup: Tozer’s late strike sinks Stevenage

Teddy Sheringham

Teddy Sheringham - Credit: Archant

Match report: Yeovil Town 1 Stevenage 0

Stevenage’s hopes of a money-spinning third round draw were blown away by Yeovil Town at a blustery Huish Park.

Boro have reaped the rewards of good cup runs in recent memory, with a win over Newcastle United and taking Spurs to a replay.

But although this did not reach the low of going out to non-league Maidstone United last season, it will still be frustrating for boss Teddy Sheringham as it was a match that the visitors should have won with the chances that they had.

Stevenage went into the game on the back of their best form of the season, a five-match unbeaten run, while their opponents had been doing so badly – bottom of the Football League – that they made the decision ahead of this game to dispense with the services of their manager, Paul Sturrock, with Darren Way taking the game.

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And although there weren’t any signs of a ‘managerial bounce’ – if anything, Stevenage had the clearer chances – growing pressure on the Boro goal late on culminated in a low strike from the edge of the box from Town substitute Ben Tozer.

Boro, by comparison, lacked a cutting edge in the second period despite the efforts of Tom Pett, and perhaps could have done with an injection of fresh legs as the match wore on as Armand Gnanduillet tired.

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Gnanduillet, on loan from Chesterfield, was the only change made to the starting XI from the win over Morecambe. The striker, playing the last game of his current loan deal though this could be extended by the club into a third month, was in for Jamille Matt, but had little impact on proceedings.

An exciting start to the game saw chances for both sides; Chris Whelpdale crossed for Ben Kennedy who headed over, while for Yeovil John Sheehan sent a shot just off target.

Kennedy and Whelpdale then combined again when the latter teed up Michael Tonge, but his shot hit the Yeovil crossbar and the follow up was headed over under pressure.

Chris Day then made a save at his near post by the best player on the pitch, Harry Cornick, and as the first half petered out Boro were forced into a change when Fraser Franks went down with a knee injury and Jamie McCombe took his place.

A good run from Cornick was one of the few highlights of the second period as both sides failed to cope with the conditions. The Bournemouth loanee ran down the right, and pulled the ball across to Connor Roberts but he fired over.

Kennedy shot over the bar for the visitors, but moments later he tested Christopher Weale in the Yeovil goal.

This time the keeper could only parry the ball, but Whelpdale, following up, was tackled as he tried to poke his shot home.

Yeovil then applied some more pressure and Shaun Jeffers ran into the Stevenage box but was denied by a superb last-ditch tackle from Boro’s Lee Cox.

Tozer then fired home the winner from the edge of the Stevenage box to put his side into the hat for Monday’s draw, and send Boro home with nothing from their endeavours.

Yeovil Town: Weale, Smith, Dolan, Sokolik, Bird (Zoko 71), Jeffers, Dickson, Cornick, Roberts, Ward, Sheehan (Tozer 74). Subs: Krysiak, Compton, Thomas, Fogden, Lacey.

Stevenage: Day, Henry, Ogilvie, Franks (McCombe 38), Wells, Whelpdale, Kennedy (Lee 87), Cox, Tonge, Kennedy, Gnanduillet (Marriott 87). Subs: Gorman, Conlon, Hughes, Crowe.

Att: 2264 (175 away)

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