Parkway exit the FA Trophy at the first attempt

AFC Totton vs Parkway | Match Report

Parkway travelled to Hampshire for the 2nd time this week to face fellow Southern League Premier side AFC Totton in the 3rd Round Qualifying of the FA Trophy. 3 changes were made from Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at Winchester City with Callum Rose, Rio Garside, and Matt Wright starting in place of Toby Down, Tom Purrington and Reece Thomson respectively.

Graham Lloyd

Full Match Report

Images: Jessica Lee

The game got off to a fairly even start with both sides knocking the ball around nicely with Totton forcing an early corner on 3 minutes which came to nothing.

Play continued at a lively pace with both defences remaining solid and little action in the final third until the 14th minute when the hosts took the lead. A slightly contentious free kick awarded some 40 yards out with Callum Hall receiving an early caution was directed to the far post where Maltese international Sam Magri planted a firm header back across the 6 yard area into the bottom corner. Totton remained on top with Parkway struggling to retain possession in midfield with too many passes going astray and offering little threat up front.

With Totton looking comfortable in possession, on 16 minutes a neat exchange along the left between Ethan Taylor and Jordan Ragguette saw the latter lose his footing at the vital moment allowing Parkway to clear the danger.

Parkway gradually began to get into the game and on 18 minutes a superb turn and run from Garside wide on the right released Jack Crago whose cross was cleared. Parkway continued their patient build up play from the back and on 22 minutes a sweeping long diagonal ball from Oscar Halls to the left picked out Crago whose cross was deflected for a corner from which the impressive Magri headed firmly clear.

On 25 minutes another raking ball from Halls again found Crago wide on the left who this time cut inside Benny Read with his shot heading for the bottom corner being comfortably gathered low down by Lewis Noice.

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Possession continued to be evenly shared with Parkway competing well but unable to penetrate the hosts midfield and defensive lines. On the half hour Adam Parkes did well to race from his goal and head clear a long ball from Scott Rendall with Taylor closing in.

Charlie Kennedy then fired wildly over from around 30 yards with on 34 minutes followed by Garside at the other end seeing his instinctive drive from around 25 yards also clearing the bar. With Parkway growing into the game but still unable to get in behind the host’s back line, they continued to probe but their scoring attempts were mainly from distance with Hall’s effort on 35 minutes from around 20 yards easily saved by Noice. With Parkway finishing the half the stronger, on 39 minutes good link up play between Garside and Hall saw the latter’s low cross cleared from close to goal line by Luke Hallett.

Parkway continued to press and on 41 minutes good work between White, Garside and Hall saw Noice just gather a cross ahead of the incoming Crago. Approaching the 2 minutes of added time Parkway almost drew level. After a period of pressure the ball was nodded on to Mikey Williams around 10 yards out who turned sharply only to see his rising shot crash against the angle of bar and post and rebound away to safety.

After falling behind to the early goal Parkway gradually worked their way back into the game with their patient build up play with the hosts content to absorb pressure and play on the counter and proving hard to break down. Parkway remained patient in possession looking the more dangerous side in the last 15 minutes creating a couple of good chances and can consider themselves unfortunate not to be level at the break.

Both sides made changes at half time with Tom Purrington replacing Henry Wilson for Parkway and Alfie Stanley and Adam Tomasso on for Taylor and Hallet for Totton who adjusted their formation. Parkway made an early break with Garside seeing his effort comfortably saved after good link up play along the left with Crago. On 51 minutes White saw yellow for a foul wide on the right with the resultant free kick being well defended. On 53 minutes Totton almost increased their lead with Parkes doing well to recover and grab the loose ball after a neat Stanley flick on almost deceived the keeper.

Play continued to be compressed in midfield with Parkway continuing their patient build up play but still unable to break through the host’s solid defensive lines with neither side creating much in the final third.

On the hour Wright was replaced by Thomson who was quickly into his stride with his cross from the right headed cleared by Magri. Totton continued to absorb pressure and play on the counter and on 67 minutes Joe Oastler broke clear releasing Rendall whose shot was easily saved by Parkes.

Totton made their final change on 70 minutes with Matty Burrows replacing Read and it was the substitute that made an almost immediate impact by going clear along the left and firing in a dangerous cross which just evaded Rendall. Burrows repeated the dose on  74 minutes by latching on to a long ball over the top, cutting inside and showing good composure slotted an angled shot beyond

Parkes to double the host’s lead. Before the restart Dylan Jones replaced Hall for Parkway as they looked to increase their attacking options. With Parkway now forced to push more men forward gaps began to open up and on 77 minutes the lively Burrows again raced forward forcing a corner.

Parkway continued to press but the Totton lines remained solid with Oastler and Jones both cautioned for a minor incident before on 84 minutes Rendall set up Ben Winterburn who fired well over from around 18 yards. With Totton now looking more dangerous on the break Stanley’s on target effort was superbly blocked by Halls with Parkway then breaking clear and almost pulling a goal back. Crago raced clear along the right to the byeline and went one on one with the keeper who had narrowed the angle and managed to block the shot with Garside’s shot from the rebound deflected for a corner.

On 88 minutes Parkway continued to apply pressure winning a couple of headers in the 6 yard box from a corner with the ball eventually being scrambled away.

In the 4 minutes of added time Parkway continued to apply pressure with Totton managing to defend strongly but Parkway were finally rewarded in the 3rd added minute by pulling a goal back. Determined play by Thomson on the right saw him win the ball with his cross not fully cleared and Jones reacting quickest to the loose ball and smashing home a first time effort from around 10 yards for his first senior goal for the club.

Parkway created one more attack with Noice gathering a high cross from Ryan Lane shortly before the referee called time.

A tight game of fine margins with Parkway doing well to recover from conceding an early goal but despite having their fair share of possession were unable to too often break down a well organised, well drilled Totton outfit with Magri a commanding figure at the back. In a game of few clear chances Totton managed the game well with Parkway just falling short in the final third at key times but deserving their late goal albeit just a consolation. Having now exited both the FA Cup and Trophy,

Parkway can now fully focus on their league programme which won’t get any easier as they visit high flying 2nd placed Merthyr Town next Saturday in their 3rd consecutive fixture on the road.

Match Info

Line-ups:

AFC Totton

1 Noice, 2 Read (Burrows 70), 3 Ragguette, 5, Kennedy, 6 Hallett (Tomasso 46), 7 Oastler, 9 Rendall ©, 19 Taylor (Stanley 46), 14 Winterburn, 15 Magri, 17 Maloney

Substitutes

4 Carter (unused), 8 Tomasso, 11 Burrows, Trojanowski (gk) (unused), 16 Stanley, 18 Scrimshaw (unused), 20 Thomas (unused)

Plymouth Parkway

1 Parkes, 2 White, 3 Lane ©, 4 Wilson (Purrington 46), 5 Halls, 6 Rose, 7 Williams, 8 Hall, 19 Wright, 10 Garside, 11 Crago

Substitutes

14 Belsten (unused), 15 Down (unused), 16 Purrington, 9 Thomson, 17 Jones, 18 Goulty (unused)

Attendance: 376 (19 away)