FA Cup special: Half-time: Needham Market 0 Cambridge United 0

RUNNING THE GAME: Ian Westlake
RUNNING THE GAME: Ian Westlake
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A superb first half from Needham Market has seen them keep Skrill Conference Premier Division leaders Cambridge United at bay.

Needham started the game well and Jamie Guy and Sam Newson tested Cambridge goalkeeper Chris Maxwell inside the opening 10 minutes.

On-loan Colchester United winger also went on a mazy run that threatened to end as a classic FA Cup goal, but Tom Bonner got across to halt his progress.

Despite having plenty of the ball, it took 13 minutes for the visiting U’s - top of the Skrill Conference Premier Division - to have a shot at James Shea’s goal, but Kwesi Appiah’s stunning drive rattled the underside of the crossbar.

Ian Westlake was dictating play from central midfield and Melaugh’s dribbling continued to cause the away side problems and the Marketmen - from three leagues below their professional opponents - could not quite force the ball home from a goalmouth scramble.

At the other end, Appiah looked the most likely to break through and dragged a shot wide on the half-turn after sneaking in behind the home side’s defence again.

Needham suffered a blow when Newson went off on crutches on the stroke of half-time and Cambridge almost grabbed the opening goal when Ryan Donalson’s 25-yard free-kick was pushed over by Shea.

The U’s ended the half in the ascendancy, with Shea also called upon to push away Josh Coulson’s header, but the interval came with the game all square.

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