BIDEFORD 2 BRISTOL MANOR FARM 2 (FA CUP PR)
TURNER AND ALLAN RESCUE REPLAY FOR ROBINS
10-man Bideford produced a fantastic comeback yesterday to salvage a replay against Bristol Manor Farm with two late goals in the FA Cup.
Trailing 2-0 and having played an hour with a man disadvantage after Ben Carter’s harsh dismissal, The Robins came storming back thanks to goals from Ryan Turner and Craig Allan.
Bideford actually had the better of the opening 20 minutes although they had an early scare when Steve Oliver stumbled out of his area and handled the ball but only received a yellow card. The resulting free kick came to nothing. Carter came close to scoring a spectacular opener from the halfway line after Ben John’s poor clearance but his effort drifted just wide of the unguarded net.
The game turned on 27 minutes as Dean Stamp’s shot struck a Bideford hand from only a couple of yards away and to the surprise of almost everybody the referee pointed to the penalty spot. Former Robin Owen Howe stepped up to drive home the spot kick into the bottom corner to give Bristol Manor Farm a lead they scarcely deserved.
Things got worse for Bideford as they were harshly penalised by the referee for the second time in less than five minutes as Carter was shown a straight red card for a fairly innocuous tackle which was certainly no worse than some of the challenges that preceded it. With the sense of injustice in the air Bideford continued to battle as Manor Farm started to take advantage. Liam Gregory produced a great challenge to deny Howe on the edge of the box and Oliver made good saves from Stamp and Jordan Metters.
The second half saw Bideford working hard to keep the away side at bay while attempting to utilise the counter attack. Oliver had to be at his best as he saved from Troy Simpson who attempted to round him and saved again from Stamp. Ben Wood almost got in for The Robins after a good knock down by Kevin Squire but Manor Farm looked to have settled things with 15 minutes to go. Metters cut the ball back for Ashley Kingdom to side foot past Oliver at the near post with a smart finish.
However Bideford were back in with a shout eight minutes later as Wood’s long throw was headed in at the back post by Turner who took a great whack for his trouble. Then with Oliver up for a corner in the 90th minute Allan buried a fine header past John to complete a stunning comeback and earn Bideford an unlikely replay on Tuesday week in Bristol.
Bideford: Oliver, Haynes (Squire 56), Allan, Mayne, Gregory (Hancox 70), Sampson, Bye, Carter, Wood, Tucker (Ward 54), Turner. Sub not used: Smeaton.
Bideford: Turner 83, Allan 90
Bristol Manor Farm: Howe 28p, Kingdom 75