RAMS FM
FA Cup (R1)
2:00pm - SundaySun 5th NovemberNov 2017
The Laithwaite Community Stadium | Att: 1858

Woking
Woking
1 - 1

Bury
Bury

Cards hope for Cup glory

Brian Caffarey
8:36am, Thu 2nd Nov 2017
Woking v Bury
Emirates FA Cup First Round
2pm on Sunday 5 November 2017

Anthony Limbrick has the chance to add his own chapter to the Cards’ FA Cup history with this tie against League One side Bury on Sunday afternoon. (Note that it is a 2pm kick-off.) Neither side has been in great form recently, with the visitors having sacked manager Lee Clark this week. But Cards fans know that their team can play a bit on their day and will be hoping that this game brings the best out of this young group of players. Come down to the Laithwaite Community Stadium to cheer them on!

WOKING

The Woking physio will have had his work cut out this week as he tries to cope with an injury list that seems to get longer all the time. It’s frustrating that just as players appear to be coming back from injury they pick up another knock and are also joined by fresh faces on the treatment table. Last Saturday the Cards ended up with only ten men on the field after injuries forced off Josh Staunton, Declan Appau (the scorer of a wonder goal on his full debut), Chez Isaac and Lazar Stojsavljevic. All that we can say for sure is that Kane Ferdinand will be definitely missing through suspension and that Louis Ramsay’s injury will rule him out for some time yet.

Anthony will be trusting, above all, that Sunday won’t see the repeat of the defensive slip-ups that have led to three consecutive defeats. Cards fans will be hoping to see their side get on the front foot and take the game to a team which won’t be brimming with confidence.

The Cards defeated Concord Rangers in a 4th Qualifying Round Replay in extra time to reach the First Round Proper. The winners of Sunday’s tie will pocket £18k in prize money.

BURY

The Shakers may be sitting one off the bottom of League 1 without an away win but shouldn’t be underestimated. Although they have lost their last four league games, it’s been by a single goal on each occasion and it’s clear from reports that they were far from outplayed. In Jermaine Beckford they have a proven top-class goalscorer, who’s already notched eight goals for the Shakers this season, and there are a number of other players who could cause problems for the Cards, including striker Chris Maguire and midfielder Danny Mayor, plus some very experienced ‘old hands’.

Bury have a proud history but, like a number of other smaller Northern clubs, have found life harder in recent years. Following financial problems they were relegated to League 2 at the end of the 2000-01 season and only just escaped relegation to the Conference in 2006-07, sending Stockport County down instead. There was subsequently an upturn under managers Alan Knill and Richie Barker, who led the club back to League 1, before relegation occurred again in 2012-13. A third-place finish in 2014-15 returned the club to League 1 but it’s been a struggle to survive at the higher level. A 16th place finish in 2015-16 was followed by 19th place last season, the recently-departed Lee Clark having taken over in February on his unexpected departure from Kilmarnock.

Clark and the Shakers’ Chairman, Stewart Day, said pre-season that they were aiming for a top six finish but it’s been a different story so far. The Shakers have won only three league games this season, all at home. Away from home, they have drawn two games and lost six, scoring eight goals and conceding sixteen. Their 1-0 defeat at home to Doncaster Rovers last Saturday was their fourth successive loss and proved the final straw for Clark. In fact, they did well to nearly hold out, having defender Eoghan O’Connell sent off in first-half stoppage time. He will of course miss Sunday’s game. There may be doubts, too, about Beckford’s fitness: he went off injured in the Doncaster game. Ryan Lowe, an iconic figure at Gigg Lane and now in his third spell at the club as Player Development Coach, has been handed the reins for this match.

Goalkeeping duties have been shared this season by highly-experienced Joe Murphy, who has made over 500 Football League appearances and won two caps for the Republic of Ireland, and 23-year-old Italian Leonardo Fasan, who signed from Celtic in the summer, having had a brief loan spell at Port Vale.

Defenders include Chris Humphrey, a Jamaican international, with over 400 appearances on his CV, including for Motherwell in the Champions League qualifiers and Preston North End; Phil Edwards, with over 500 appearances, including six successful seasons with Accrington Stanley and two promotions with Burton Albion; Tom Aldred, who also had a good spell with Accrington before making 75 appearances for Blackpool; Callum Reilly, who made 60 appearances for Birmingham City and was part of the Burton Albion side which won promotion to the Championship; Nathan Cameron, formerly with Coventry; Joe Skarz, who returned to the club in the summer, having previously achieved promotion with Bury, Rotherham and Oxford; and Alex Whitmore, a central defender on loan from Burnley.

In midfield, in addition to Danny Mayor, Clark can call on: Jay O’Shea, signed in the summer from Chesterfield in spite of an offer from Sheffield United; Rohan Ince, brought in on loan from Brighton and Hove Albion to replace the injured Stephen Dawson; Andrew Tutte, formerly with Manchester City’s Academy and Rochdale; Josh Laurent, on loan from Wigan; and 19 year-old Romanian, Mihai-Alexandru Dobre, on loan from Bournemouth.

Up front, in addition to 33-year-old Beckford, whose previous clubs include Leeds, Everton and Leicester City in a career of nearly 400 appearances and over 160 goals, the Shakers’ strikers include Chris Maguire, who joined in the summer from Oxford. Maguire played over 150 games for Aberdeen and won two full Scottish caps before a £400k move to Derby. Nicky Ajose is in his third loan spell at Gigg Lane. An ex-Manchester United youngster, he notched 13 goals in 28 appearances in his first loan spell and scored 25 goals for Swindon in 40 games before moving to Charlton. Harry Bunn arrived in the summer from Huddersfield, where he scored 17 goals in 88 appearances. Michael Smith, a 6’4� striker, also joined in the summer, having played for a number of League clubs, with his longest spell at Swindon Town.

ADMISSION PRICES

Season ticket holders are reminded that this is an ‘all pay’ game. Admission prices are:

Adults £15
Concessions £10
U16s £5

Why not treat yourself to the great deal on offer in the Geoff Chapple Lounge:

• Entrance to the game
• A two-course meal
• Pre-match interview with manager Anthony Limbrick where he will reveal the line-up
• Premium leather seat in the Leslie Gosden Stand
• Complimentary match programme and team sheet
• Meet the Man of the Match

Tickets cost £45 + VAT.

To book your place in the Lounge, contact Jess Holmes on 07990 781598 or jess.holmes@wokingfc.co.uk

The game will be segregated, with Bury fans allocated the open Chris Lane Terrace (standing) and part of the seated Leslie Gosden Stand.

MATCHDAY PROGRAMME

Don’t forget to grab a copy of ‘Cardinals’. Only £3 for interviews, previews, match reports, Academy updates and great photos.

COMING UP

The Cards are away to FC Halifax Town the following Saturday (11 November). If there is a need for a replay against Bury, it will take place on Tuesday 14 November. The Cards’ next home league game is against Maidenhead United on Saturday 18 November, with another home game, against Ebbsfleet United, quickly following on Tuesday 21 November.

Come on, you Cards!

P.S. Cards Trust members are reminded that the Trust’s AGM is being held at 7.30pm on Wednesday 8 November.

Bury-illiant recovery earns Cardinals a replay

Ben Musgrove
12:00am, Sun 5th Nov 2017
Woking 1 Bury 1
Emirates FA Cup First Round
5th November 2017

The November drizzle broke at just the right time for home fans hoping for a grand day out in the First Round proper of the FA Cup, with Woking grinding out a 1-1 draw against a Bury side struggling for form two leagues above them in the rare winter sunshine. Despite conceding after just 42 seconds through Michael Smith, the Cards were on terms by half time thanks to a Jamie Philpott header, and outshot their football league opposition in a game that both sides had good chances to win.

Woking came into the game on a poor run of form having lost three of the last five, with last week's 3-2 defeat to a struggling Guiseley side a particularly difficult pill to swallow. The absences of Kane Ferdinand through suspension and Josh Staunton through injury made things more difficult still, despite strong replacements in Joey Jones and Richard Orlu respectively. Despite this, Chez Isaac managed to overcome a knock that forced him off in the aforementioned defeat to start the game, and Anthony Limbrick's decision to start both strikers available to him suggested a real optimism about the afternoon.

Such optimism was potentially inspired by the difficult circumstances that the opposition found themselves facing. Bury made five changes from the 1-0 defeat against Doncaster that finalised the sacking of Lee Clark, which included top scorer Jermaine Beckford - who had scored more than half of the Shakers' goals so far this season. The visitors had only won one game away from home all season, and looked to curb a run of four straight defeats that had seen them drop to 23rd in League 1.

Within a minute of kickoff, they looked well on their way to doing so, opening the scoring with a goal equal parts tragic and comic. Bury's passing fashioned space for full back Glenn Leigh down the left hand side, and the Manchester City graduate was able to float a cross in past Matt Young. The ball was dangerous enough for Joey Jones to attempt to head it behind, only for the clearance to fall short, and arc gracefully onto the Woking bar. With Baxter beaten, the ball dropped perfectly for visiting forward Michael Smith, who knew he'd scored well before he rolled the ball into an unguarded net. Just 42 seconds in, Woking had gifted a goal to a team 33 places above them in the football pyramid, and had a psychological mountain to climb.

Understandably, there followed a cagey period of the game where the Cards did their best to gain control and assert themselves, whilst Bury did their best to pick off the home side – who are developing a reputation for possession football - on the counter. The high press that Bury utilised meant that Woking had to work the ball wide to find any creative outlets, whilst a fluid shape with overlapping fullbacks made it difficult for Woking to press themselves. Leigh continued to threaten down the left with strong overlapping runs and a few pulse-raising crosses, and looked one of the most dangerous outlets for the visitors in the early stages. A shot just wide from Joe Ward, skittering across the goal of Leo Fasan, was the only riposte for the home side in the first 20 minutes.

However, Woking began to find space more regularly after surviving the opening pressure, with Regan Charles-Cook and Joe Ward combining well to create an opening for Matt Young that looked particularly dangerous. Growing into the game, the Cards were looking shift momentum in their favour, and did so soon after with a fantastic equaliser.

A quick throw in from Nathan Ralph on the left-hand side found Charles-Cook just to the left of central midfield, and the Charlton loanee looked up before arcing a beautiful early cross over the Bury defence and onto the head of Jamie Philpott. The youngster leaped well to smash a header into the top corner across Fasan, who was given no chance. The KRE exploded into noise and green flare smoke; after an early setback, Woking were level in style, and from that point on looked the more dangerous side in the first half.

It could have been even better just a few minutes later, had a great finish not been ruled out for a foul by Joey Jones. Joe Ward’s vicious corner found the Woking stalwart on hand to bullet a header past Fasan, only for the goal to be discounted for a push in the build-up. Further efforts from Ward, Philpott, and a scuffed shot from Effiong after great footwork were the further reward for a side in the ascendancy against their league opposition, with little danger from the visitors in response. The home side would have been disappointed to hear the half-time whistle, which ended an excellent period of play after such an early blow.

Half-time: Woking 1 Bury 1

The second half saw a change in system from Bury, who moved from their fluid five-at-the-back system to a more conventional back four in an attempt to get a better hold of possession, and to break Woking down higher up the field. The Cards, on the back of a good showing, remained unchanged.

Within a few minutes of the restart, they could have been ahead. Following some good movement of the ball across the park, the ball was worked out to Ward on the left-hand side of goal. The young winger cut inside his marker and smashed a low shot at goal which Fasan could only parry, but the ricochet bounced just beyond the outstretched leg of Jones, who was lurking for the rebound.

Despite this early chance, the change in system seemed to benefit Bury in the early stages. After a promising close to the first half, Woking retained their possessive dominance, but were unable to create as freely as they had done. However, their ball-winning ability remained at an extremely high level, with Bury not managing to create at all in the early stages of the half. Special mention should go to Jordan Wynter, who was immaculate in his work at center-back with several important challenges, and Chez Isaac, whose packhorse role in the middle of the park was pivotal to Woking's ability to move the ball up the field.

When their first chance came, it was one of the biggest of the afternoon, and something of a sitter for the unfortunate Inih Effiong. The 6'3 target man, serenaded by sections of the home support after the game for his running of the line, managed to bring a long ball from central midfield down on his chest, before attempting to lay in Philpott breaking the line beside him. Philpott was thwarted by Leigh, but only just - the clearance knocked the ball up into the air above the box, and dropped back to an onrushing Effiong just 7 yards from goal. His finish, however, embodied the frustrations of a forward who hasn't scored since September 2nd; a stooping header that missed the target entirely.

As the half wore on, Woking began to lose a little impetus in their play, and Bury began to create with more regularity and some impressive movement of the ball. Andrew Tutte and Mihai Dobre both looked strong offensive outlets for the visitors, making Nathan Baxter work on multiple occasions with dangerous efforts from range. Maguire continued to provide danger from set pieces, and Woking had to work hard to maintain their grip on possession and their position in the game.

The introduction of Declan Appau for a tiring Charles-Cook was an important boost for the Cards. The 18 year old could have had an FA Cup winner to go alongside his Goal of the Month nomination, taking down a throw from the left wing and cutting inside smartly between Tutte and Jordan Williams, only for his goalbound effort to be denied by a smart block from Tom Aldred.

However, his effort was the last real moment of offensive quality from either side. Both Maguire and Ward provided sub-par set pieces for in the closing stages, and a stratospheric spinning volley from Effiong just before the final whistle was the only direct effort at goal Woking managed for the remainder of the game.

The final whistle, then, brought positives and negatives for both sides. Had Woking managed to capitalise on some fantastic football and impressive work in possession, they would be celebrating victory against one of their biggest opponents in recent history, and looking forward to the Second Round of the FA Cup. They rode out difficult moments, particularly in the early stages, and managed the game well throughout.

The manner of their performance may make a great result against a team two divisions above them less favourable - but on the other hand, had it been offered before the game had started, few would have turned it down. The Cards now look forward to a replay at Gigg Lane for their hard work, and if they can manage a performance of the same magnitude, their hopes of progression may not be unrealistic.


Woking: Nathan Baxter, Nathan Ralph, Jordan Wynter, Richard Orlu, Matt Young, Chez Isaac, Joey Jones, Regan Charles-Cook (Declan Appau 79), Joe Ward, Jamie Philpot, Inih Effiong

Unused subs: Jason Banton, Fabio Saraiva, Lazar Stojsavljevic, Sam Mason

Goals: Philpot 25

Bookings: Ralph 80

Bury: Leo Fasan, Jordan Williams, Phil Edwards, Tom Aldred, Chris Humphrey (Rohan Ince 58), Andrew Tutte, Jay O’Shea, Greg Leigh, Danny Mayor (Mihai Dobre 76), Chris Maguire, Michael Smith

Unused subs: Nicky Ajose, Callum Reilly, Alex Whitmore, Neil Danns, Scott Maloney

Goals: Smith 1

Bookings: Williams 34, Smith 83, Aldred 90+2

Referee: Darren England

Attendance: 1858

Sponsors’ Man of the Match: Chez Isaac. You’d never know he was coming back from injury – the midfielder was a cornerstone of Woking’s build-up play, and harassed the opposition through the middle all day long. A strong performance from the captain.

WOKING LINEUP
1Nathan Baxter
21Matt Young
3Nathan Ralph
6Richard Orlu
15Jordan Wynter
8Chez Isaac
4Joey Jones
23Joe Ward
11Regan Charles-Cook ('79)
20Jamie Philpot
9Inih Effiong
BENCH
18Sam Mason
24Lazar Stojsavljevic
17Declan Appau ('79)
14Fabio Saraiva
10Jason Banton
Bury LINEUP
38Leo Fasan
12Jordan Williams
14Phil Edwards
15Tom Aldred
17Chris Humphrey ('58)
4Andrew Tutte
26Jay O Shea
3Greg Leigh
10Danny Mayor ('76)
7Chris Maguire
29Michael Smith
BENCH
11Nicky Ajose
13Callum Reilly
20Alex Whitmore
21Mihai Dobre ('76)
30Rohan Ince ('58)
31Neil Danns
42Scott Maloney

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