Fisher 0-3 Welling United
Tuesday 20 September 2022
FA Cup 2nd Qualifying Round – Replay
Attn: 573 (new ground and club record)
Fisher’s 2022/23 FA Cup odyssey finally came to an end after an improbable eight game run after a 3-0 defeat to National League South side Welling United in a second qualifying round replay under the lights at St Paul’s. However, in front of a record crowd of 573 they bowed out with heads held high after a battling performance against their visitors from 80 places higher in the pyramid.
Having forced a magnificent goal-less draw on Saturday manager Ajay Ashanike was forced into a slight reshuffle to his already injury hit side with Osemen Usifoh aggravating a previous injury, so Tamas Amgbaduba deputised on the wing.
Welling came out eager to avoid any slip ups and an early chance appeared when Maloney smashed a free kick for Sam Amedu to palm away for a corner, to start a period of pressure on the Fisher goal, which saw Amedu clutch a deflected header on his goal line and Ade Azeez flick somehow kept out by a combination of Amedu, Sarpong and Imoru on the line.
It wasn’t all one-way traffic however and ghosting in between two defenders Manny Shoderu had a great opportunity but couldn’t quite get over his header and it lobbed towards McKenzie-Lyle in the Welling goal when a better contact could have fired it into a corner to beat the keeper.
Fisher’s injury ravaged squad received a further blow when Malachi Coker hobbled off, having also aggravated a previous injury with Ryan Atkinson coming onto replace him
On thirty-eight minutes though Welling’s pressure and patient build up play finally paid off, several passes fed Taylor Maloney on the left of the area and hie fired a shot low into the far right corner to give Welling the lead.
Fisher looked to get back on terms before the break and pushed higher up the pitch with some good interchanges of passes in the middle third. Luke Thomas wriggled into a good position, but his low drive was well smothered by McKenzie-Lyle.
A goal down at the break Fisher were still very much in the tie but it was obvious the next goal would be crucial. The second spell saw good early chances for both sides with Devonte Aransibia seeing an effort defected wide before Michael Sarpong drove out of a tackle and found space to fire off a shit from twenty yards which McKenzie-Lyle struggled to hold after an awkward bounce and pushed wide for a corner. Moments later thought the game was as good as done as Welling went straight up the other end from the resulting corner to force a corner of their own and the ball travelled through some collapsing bodies at the near post and was scrambled home on the back post as Sam Fitzgerald sought to keep it out off the line but Taofiq Olomowere. On a different day Fisher may have been awarded a free kick for the tangle as the corner came in but it was not to be and the complaints were light.
Two down, Fisher had to commit and they battled well, with Ryan Atkinson sending in a shot the left that flew just wide of the right post and substitute Luke With teeing up Isaac Thompson who drew a finger tipped save from the keeper. Thompson was becoming more influential the game and having a real tussle with his marker which culminate din him being upended on the corner of the area. Atkinson’s free kick drew a save low down at the near post in what was Fisher’s final attempt at goal.
In injury time Welling added some gloss to the score line with some quick passing being too much for tired Fisher legs and Amadon Kassarate turned neatly to fire home low from the edge of the box and send Welling through to meet Weymouth in the next round.
Fisher can reflect in a magnificent cup run having knocked out two step four sides and earned a replay against a step 2 side and reflect on what might have been had their attacking trio of Darnelle Bailey-King, Fidan Fejzi and Jacob Katonia been available rather than injured or suspended. However many of the players have not looked out of place against higher ranked opponents and it was no surprise a number of scouts were present with Joseph Adewunmi again magnificent throughout.