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City progress at a canter

City cleared the final preliminary hurdle before reaching the qualifying rounds of the FA Cup with a convincing winner over local rivals Newmarket Town FC.

In a fiesty start to the match, City rode their luck in the first 20 minutes as the Jockeys came flying out of the stalls, pressing high up the pitch in an attempt to unsettle the back four. It was a welcome sight for all the visiting fans to see Richard Black return and play 90 mins after picking up a hamstring strain in pre-season.

Joe Welch was called into action in that early period and was equal to anything thrown at him, first diving at the feet of an on-rushing attacker before making a finger-tip save from a well struck shot outside the box.

With City easily soaking up the early pressure, the game was turned on its head on 30 minutes. Mikey Davies surged into the box, but his heavy touch gave the Newmarket defence a chance to get a challenge in, the clearance went straight to Captain Scott Bridges who smashed the ball, first time, into the top corner from all of 30 yards. A devastating strike from the skipper as the home team stadium announcer reluctantly declared "A goal against the run of play, for Cambridge City"

The goal knocked the wind out of Town and that was only compounded further when 3 minutes later Stan Leech got on the end of a lovely floated cross from Jake Battersby. Leech was able to steer the ball back across goal and over the keepers head before going in off the far post.

A blow to the head saw Leech replaced on the stroke of halftime by Ryan Ingrey, but the Lilywhites enjoyed taking a 0-2 lead into the break.

The second half was mostly played in the home team's half as the Jockey's early endeavours left them seemingly ready to spit the bit in the hot August sunshine. City controlled the play and went further ahead when a well-worked move released Dan Cotton into the box and the City Hitman rifled the ball into the roof of the net, on the angle, giving the keeper absolutely no chance. I'd normally say he doesn't miss those but he did.... 10 minutes later.... with an almost identical opportunity, to be fair the angle was much tighter with the second chance.

That goal effectively killed the game and with 15mins left on the clock, Robbie took off Stefan Broccoli, presumably to save him from being kicked around the park any further ahead of our return to the NPL on Tuesday night. He was replaced by Bradley Rolt and Lewis Darlington also came on to replace Dan Cotton.

Darlington was immediately effective on the right, putting the Newmarket left back under pressure and it was his run down the wing that resulted in a cross that was turned into the net by defender Jake Eady giving City a deserved 0-4 lead.

The Jockeys did pull one back, on 90 mins, two players running into each other in the box before the ball fell kindly to Ash Walter who was able to finish from 10 yards.

A great result against a dangerous side who had previously been unbeaten so far this season. We look forward to the draw for the 1st qualifying tie and also our home league game on Tuesday with Quorn FC.

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