NATIONAL SUNDAY FA CUP SECOND ROUND
Gym United 3
Gym United boss Matt Morton has paid tribute to his side after seeing them march on in this season’s National Sunday FA Cup.
The Sunday outfit, who will play at Wolverhampton Casuals for a place in the last 16 on December 11 (1pm), defeated Nottinghamshire Sunday League side Nuthall 3-1 to progress further than any other Suffolk team before them in the prestigious competition.
After their latest success at Summer Road – home of Walsham-le-Willows FC – manager Matt Morton said: “The standard of this competition is so high, that even being allowed an entry into it is an achievement in itself.
“For us to now have won our first two fixtures to be in the hat for the third round is fantastic and all credit needs to go to the players.
“They are great footballers, but it is their spirit and passion for the club and each other which is so crucial.
“We are enjoying the ride in this competition and I don’t think anybody is ready to get off just yet so we will keep fighting with all we have.
“I genuinely couldn’t be prouder of the group as their manager and their friend, but we are all hungry for more.”
Nuthall began strongly but struggled to break down a strong defensive unit, with Morton and Nathan Clarke, in particular, showing their dominance on the floor and in the air.
Gym took the lead against the run of play when Wayne Proctor coolly lobbed the ball over the onrushing keeper following a fine pass from Liam Bolton.
The visitors were denied by a block from Morton and a fantastic save from Damien Goshawk.
Gym doubled their lead when the ball was fed to Proctor. He cut inside and found Andrew Wood in space, who unleashed a shot with his left foot to beat the visiting goalkeeper.
The hosts were in dreamland when they added a third just before the break.
A clearance fell to the onrushing Wood, who beat his marker to the ball to hit a sublime first-time shot with the outside of his right foot from 30 yards which sailed beautifully over the keeper into an unguarded net.
Shortly after the third goal, Gym’s Cordell Jackson pulled his hamstring and the left back was replaced by Alex McIntosh in a like for like change.
The second half was a much more even affair as Nuthall threw everything at United in an effort to find a way back into the tie.
Nuthall finally managed to create a legitimate opening with a great instinctive finish on the half-turn which eluded Goshawk and found the corner of the net.
Gym refused to panic and remained rock solid for the last few minutes of the game.
The final two chances of an absorbing clash fell the way of Proctor, who skied one effort over the woodwork and saw another one blocked.