Report - Maidenhead United 1-2 Oxford City (AET)
Kabby's Double Sees City Advance
By Ryan Bratley
After three and a quarter hours of football, Oxford City finally ran out 2-1 winners over Maidenhead United in the FA Trophy to book a trip to Maidstone in the second round.
With City having led the original tie 1-0 when it was abandoned after 75 minutes, Kabby Tshimanga's brace and Craig King's penalty save proved to be enough for them to triumph over their National League opponents for a second time.
Following Saturday's unfortunate 1-0 defeat to St Albans, Mark Jones found himself with an even smaller pool of players to pick from with Jack Self cup-tied. Kunle Otudeko slotted into midfield in his place, joining Josh Ashby and captain Reece Fleet behind the attacking three of Craig Fasanmade, Bobson Bawling, and Kabby Tshimanga. Back at the other end of the pitch, the defence remained unchanged with Udoka Godwin-Malife and Ben Jefford at centre half; Eddie Jones and Tom Carter at Fullback; and Craig King made his 50th appearance in goal.
Meanwhile, an exceptionally youthful bench featured only two outfield players: Ben Barrett and John O'Donoghue joining goalkeeper Steven Caro.
The first half ranked among the most dull City have produced this season, although it started brightly: Tshimanga's deflected shot forcing a superb save from Carl Pentney before Josh Kelly skimmed the bar from 10 yards – all within the first 10 minutes.
The hosts struck the woodwork again in the 21st minute, James Akintunde rising highest to head against the outside of the far post.
At half time the match had 0-0 written all over it, but thankfully the second period yielded far more action.
The Magpies drew first blood in the 53rd minute when substitute Nana Owusu struck a powerful free kick beyond King's reach but the Hoops were able to respond within five minutes, Fasanmade winning a penalty after being scythed down as he looked to reach the byline. Tshimanga made no mistakes from the spot, sending Pentney the wrong way to level the scores.
A thrilling 10 minutes were capped off by another penalty, this time for the hosts. The decision itself was wrapped in controversy with questions raised over whether the challenge was inside the box, but these were quickly forgotten when Craig King dropped low to his right to beat away Ryan Upward's misplaced effort.
The Magpies came at City with gusto in search of a winning goal: James Akintunde denied a shooting opportunity by an exceptionally timed tackle from Jones before Harold Odametey's long range effort failed to catch King out.
With the game looking increasingly likely to go to extra time, Mark Jones turned to his bench for the first time after 77 minutes with Ben Barrett replacing Kunle Otudeko.
The Hoops had one opportunity to snatch victory right at the death, Tshimanga lining up a shot in the 3rd minute of stoppage time which was deflected superbly into the side netting.
With the game going to extra time both sides were granted a fourth substitution, although this was of limited use to the Mark Jones and his bench of three players.
The Hoops, however, looked the fresher side and were able to snatch a second goal in the 99th minute. Fasanmade's snap shot from inside the area forced a good reflex save from Pentney but the goalkeeper could only palm the ball onto the post, leaving the lurking Tshimanga to put the loose ball into the back of the net from all of one yard.
The second period of extra time proved to be as good as the first for the visitors, Bawling almost making the game safe with a superb effort from outside the area which saw Pentney at full stretch to tip around the post.
Victory for the Hoops means that Saturday's scheduled league tie against Welling will now be rearranged with a new date to be announced in due course.
Oxford City: King, Jones, Carter, Ashby, Godwin-Malife, Jefford, Fasanmade, Fleet (c), Tshimanga, Otudeko (Barrett 77), Bawling.
Unused: Caro, O'Donoghue