Diamonds enjoyed their return to the Dog & Duck on Saturday afternoon running out 4 – 0 winners against Wellingborough Town in the FA Cup Preliminary round.

There was just one change to Andy Peaks’ side that started in the midweek win at Thame United. The injured winger Luke Fairlamb missed out while Darryl Smith deputised as the number 11. An extended substitute’s bench saw two youth players in Ben Burton and Isaac Watson getting their names on the team sheet.

Tom Lorraine opened the scoring on 10 minutes bundling in a Ben Ford corner after pressure had been building on the home side. Diamonds were awarded a penalty on 15 minutes after the home keeper Sean Allen brought Nabil Shariff down. Shariff couldn’t convert though as Allen saved low to his right. After chances for Shariff, Lorraine and Gyasi, Diamonds doubled their lead on 44 minutes with Sam Brown getting his annual goal heading home another Ben Ford corner.

Diamonds finally added a third in the 68th minute after a good advantage was played by the referee after Gyasi was fouled. Tom Lorraine had picked up the loose ball and was allowed to run in on goal and fire past Allen for his 2nd of the game.  The 4th came on 75 minutes after another scramble from a corner, Joel Gyasi with the ball in this time and Nabil Shariff poking home from close range for his 5th goal in 3 games.

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The home side’s team was littered with ex-Diamonds players. Aynsley McDonald – who came through the Rushden & Diamonds youth system and played in the first AFC Rushden season – started the game at right back for the Doughboys. Fellow old boys Jake Gillingwater and Alfie Taylor started from the bench. 

The first chance of the game came from the hosts in the opening seconds, but the striker’s effort was comfortably held by goalkeeper Ben Heath. On five minutes, Smith gave Diamonds their first shot, which was blazed over from 30 yards. But it was early on in the 10th minute when the Diamonds opened the scoring. Ben Ford’s in swinging corner was headed into the net by Lorraine.  

The visitors then had a penalty when Shariff was taken down by the goalkeeper, but the number one made amends, saving comfortably to his left after a poorly struck spot kick. Keeper Sean Allen received a booking for his foul on Shariff. 

A few moments later, Shariff will feel as if he should have scored again. Left back Ford drove forward and across the pitch to find himself on the right wing before crossing to the striker who was only a few yards out, but he could only stretch his header over. 

On the 27th minute, Lorraine almost doubled his tally. It was good play from Shariff to hold the ball up before laying off to Lorraine but he fizzed a low shot inches past the post.

It was just before half-time when the Diamonds finally doubled their lead.  Another Ford corner from the left – this time to the near post – found Brown to header home from six yards out.  

HALF-TIME: Wellingborough Town 0-2 AFC Rushden & Diamonds. 

The second half started slowly, with few clear cut chances. Shariff fired over after turning his man in the area two minutes after the break. A few minutes later, good hold up play from Lorraine in the area to tee up Smith for a dangerous cross which was turned behind for a corner. Joe Curtis curled the following corner in but Brown couldn’t find the net for his second of the game. 

The match turned rather feisty on 53 minutes when Doughboys striker Dayne Wood went in very late on Brown. The defender needed treatment for a few minutes, while Wood received a yellow card. Diamonds had their first booking on 57 minutes after Ford went on late on Buckby. 

Wellingborough made their first changes of the game on 67 minutes. Daniel Uche and Jack Wisniewski came on for Wood and Wills. However, these changes were immediately ineffective as Lorraine bagged his second of the afternoon just a minute later. Great work from Joel Gyasi created space outside the area. However, after going down under a challenge, the referee played advantage as the ball fell to Lorraine on the edge of the area to fire past Allen in goal.  

The Diamonds made their first change on 71 minutes, bringing defender Blaze Punter on for goalscorer Sam Brown.  

With 15 minutes remaining, the Diamonds piled on the misery for Wellingborough by adding their fourth of the afternoon. It was another corner – this time from Gyasi – that the defence failed to deal with. A scramble in the goalmouth led to Shariff poking in despite himself being on the floor. 

Diamonds made their final changes within two minutes of each other. Midfielder Fernando Bell-Toxtle replaced Curtis on 76 minutes, while winger Harry Henbury came on for Gyasi a couple of minutes later. 

Full back Callum Westwood had another strong performance, however he received a caution on 79 minutes for a late challenge on Dan Mortimer.

The Doughboys had their best chance all game for a consolation with eight minutes remaining. A cross from the right found substitute Daniel Uche but he couldn’t find the target with his header. 

With three minutes remaining, Shariff had a good opportunity to make it five. His attempted cheeky dink over the keeper was slightly underhit, and the keeper managed to get a hand on the ball to keep it out. In stoppage time, it was Shariff again who tried to capitalise on a poor clearance from Allen, however after going in and out past the defender, his effort was low and straight at the Wellingborough number one.

FULL-TIME: Wellingborough Town 0 – 4 AFC Rushden & Diamonds 

Ultimately, AFC Rushden had too much quality for Wellingborough to deal with, despite putting up a brave and motivated fight. But the Diamonds march on into the First Qualifying Round of the FA Cup.

Next up though is a Bank Holiday Southern league East double header with the visit of Fleet Town to Hayden Road next Saturday and the shorty trip to Kempton Rovers on Bank Holiday Monday.

Man of the match: Tom Lorraine

Attendance: 513

Match Report by Adam Benney 

Wellingborough Town

AFC Rushden & Diamonds

 

1. Sean Allen

2. Aynsley McDonald

3. Dan Mortimer

4. Adam Randall

5. Joe Rich (c)

6. Nathan Wills

7. Justin Dowling

8. Lloyd Buckby

9. Adam Speight

10. Dayne Wood

11. Mark Pryor

 

Subs

12. Daniel Uche (on for Wood, 67)

13. Luke Reay

14. Jake Gillingwater

15. Jack Wisniewski (on for Wills, 67)

16. Alfie Taylor (on for Buckby, 82)

17. Dan Rogers

18. Barry Deakin

13. Ben Heath

2. Callum Westwood

3. Ben Ford

4. Sam Brown

5. Liam Dolman (c)

6. Ben Farrell

7. Joel Gyasi

8. Joe Curtis

9. Tom Lorraine

10. Nabil Shariff

11. Darryl Smith

 

Subs

12. Ben Burton

14. Chief Boateng

15. Blaize Punter (on for Brown, 71)

16. Fernando Bell-Toxtle (on for Curtis, 76)

17. Matt Finlay

18. Harry Henbury (on for Gyasi, 78)

19. Isaac Watson

 

 

Goals:

Goals:Lorraine(10, 68), Brown (44), Shariff (75)

 

 Yellow cards: Allen (15), Wills (35), Wood (53)

Yellow cards: Ford (47), Westwood (79)

 

Red cards:

Red cards:

Referee:

Assistant referees:

 

 

Updated player profiles with appearance and goalscoring details are now available.

The updated Match Stats, Player Stats and Attendance figures along with league stats are found in the First Team stats area on this website here. You can also find updated fixture lists in the main fixture and results grid, as well as on the Fixture News page, where there is a downloadable version.

Video highlights and post-match interviews are available here.

Match Gallery courtesy of Malcolm Swinden Photography (click on the link to access the Diamonds Photo Gallery for more images from this game and ecommerce options). Copyright Mal Swinden ©2017

 

 

 
 
 

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