Kettering Town 2-2 Buxton

The Poppies 2-0 ahead at half time with goals from Alex Brown (out of picture) and Callum Powell, were pegged back with a spirited fightback by Buxton to force a deserved draw. 

 

Kettering Town v Buxton

Emirates FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round

Saturday 16th October 2021   3:00pm

 

Kettering Town 

Buxton

1

 Jackson Smith

 

1

 Theo Richardson

 

2

 Connor Barrett

 

2

 Matt Curley           

 

3

 Alex Brown

 

3

 Nathan Fox

 

4

 Luke Ward    

 

4

 Ben Milnes               

 Off 87

5

 Connor Johnson

 

5

 Josh Granite (Capt)

 

6

 Chris Smith

  

6

 James Hurst

 

7

 Callum Powell

  Off 89

7

 Jamie Ward         

 

16

 Claudio Ofosu

  Off 87

8

 Chris Dawson           

 Off 63

9

 Issac Stones

 

9

 Diego de Girolamo      

 

10

 Gary Stohrer (Capt)

 

10

 Tom Edwards 

 

11

 Harrison Neal

 

11

 Warren Clarke                   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Substitutes

 

 

Substitutes

 

12

 Decarrey Sheriff

 

12

 Ash Chambers          

 On 87

13

 Rhys Davies

 

14

 Lindon Meikle            

 On 63

14

 Luke O'Neill

 

15

 Ben Middleton                         

 

15

 Rhys Sharpe

 

16

 Akeem Hinds                

 

8

 Jordon Crawford

  On 89

17

 Jack Dillingham

 

17

 Lamine Sherif

  On 87

18

 Ewan Catt

 

19

 Tom Unwin

 

19

 Heath Richardson      

 

 

Referee: Dean Watson   Assistants: Mark Ryder and Tom Elliott

If Kettering were to reach the first-round proper of the FA cup for the first time in 10 years they would have to get past a confident Buxton team. Unbeaten, in all competitions in the season so far, the well funded Northern Premier Club had not held back in expressing (later retracted), their expectation in beating the team from a higher level in the pyramid. Kettering would start with the same team which battled hard in achieving a draw against Chester,apart from the suspended Kyle Perry who was dismissed in that game. He was replaced by Issac Stones. Returning to the substitutes bench after his afternoon on the TV platform was Rhys Davies sufficiently recovered from injury, to act as back-up for the incumbent goalkeeper Jackson Smith. The visitors had three former Kettering players in their line-up, Ben Milnes, Lindon Meikle and Nathan Fox.

In unseasonably warm weather, under overcast skies, Kettering kicked off attacking the stand end with Buxton in an all-white strip with blue trim. Kettering made a positive start and had a chance of taking an early lead inside the first two minutes. Connor Barrett broke down the right wing and did well to beat a couple of players before looping the ball over that was flicked on towards the far post, where Powell waited unmarked- but Callum uncharacteristically failed to capitalise on the chance.

Five minutes in and Buxton had their first attack of note. A diagonal ball was aimed towards Warren Clarke but Alex Brown was alert to the threat and blocked the shot behind for the first corner of the game. Ben Milnes took the corner from the open side but Jackson Smith met it with a solid punch to clear any danger before Neal was fouled trying to complete the clearance.

Kettering earned their first corner after Neal played a ball forward for Powell to chase, closely shepherded by Granite, but he twisted and turned and managed to keep the move going, supported by Ofosu who fed Stohrer - but his shot was deflected behind off a Buxton defender.The corner, swung in by Alex Brown, failed to clear the first man and was headed clear but only to Neal lurking just outside the box who sent a up and under towards the right-hand post. Stones tried a difficult shot hitting the dropping ball first time but he miscued his effort and fired well over. Buxton's next corner had a similar outcome the ball was partially cleared and hit very high up into the end dropping in the centre of the goal mouth just a couple of feet in play. Jackson Smith rose to punch the ball which he did but was barged by an on-rushing forward to earn a free kick.

After eighteen minutes Kettering won another corner on the open side. Brown took the kick short to Callum Powell who played the ball back to Alex on a curving run and carried the ball to the corner of the penalty area before unleashing a powerful left foot shot which gave Richardson no chance and Brown his first goal for the club. Kettering 1-0, 19 minutes.

The game settled to a period of neither keeper being threatened with Powell spurning a chance by completely miskicking the ball just outside the corner of the penalty area.Kettering were presented with another chance when Powell was brought down.  Neal wasted the kick floating in straight into Richardson's arms. Just before the half hour mark the referee produced the first yellow card of the game when Chris Dawson caught Brown well after Alex had played the ball on. Five minutes later Diego de Girolamo joined his team mate in the referee's notebook for kicking out at Luke Ward in frustration for not being able to get to the ball. A less charitable official could have shown a red card as the ball was dead at the time and could have been construed as violent conduct.

As the half entered its final ten minutes Connor Barrett pushed forward well on the open side and played a clever ball towards Powell. For once Callum managed to get away from his shadow, Granite by turning him, his shot did not match the quality of his play to engineer the chance and passed across the face of the goal without troubling Theo Richardson.

With three minutes left of the half Claudio Ofosu carried the ball forward from mid-way in Buxton's half.Purposely he aimed the ball in towards the near post where Stones was waiting. Issac scuffed his shot but Richardson threw himself to save, but the ball trickled across the face of the goal and with the keeper on the floor Powell tidied up pushing the ball home from close range. Kettering 2-0, 42 minutes.

The final three minutes and additional two minutes passed uneventfully.

Half Time: Kettering Town 2  Buxton 0

Kettering started the second half the better of the two unchanged sides.  Five minutes into the half and Kettering won a corner on the stand side. The inswinger from Alex Brown took a touch from Richardson before going behind on the far side. Neal's corner was nodded on by Stones and the ball fell to Luke Ward at the far post who saw his fierce volley brilliantly tipped over by Richardson for another corner from which a fourth successive was earned as James Hurst headed behind. This corner was eventually headed over by Kettering after a spell of head tennis in the goal mouth. The Poppies continued applying the pressure with Harrison Neal carrying the ball forward and being urged to shoot by the packed Tin-Hat. His shot was poor though and went well wide. This represented a high-water mark for Kettering's afternoon.

On the hour mark Buxton played a long ball forward. Connor Barrett made a poor clearance from in front of the burger bar. Rather than travelling down the line it skewed into the middle travelling straight to an unmarked de Girolamo who was clinical from distance hitting the ball into the top corner giving Smith no chance. Buxton 2-1 61 mins 

De Girolamo was lucky not to receive censure from the referee for running into Smith in his hurry to restart the game leaving the keeper on the floor,especially after being booked in the first half.

Two minutes after the goal Buxton made their first substitution with Lindon Meikle replacing Dawson.  Jackson Smith was called into action when Buxton inter-passing allowed Jamie Ward to make a dangerous cross into the goalmouth but Smith palmed the ball on its way taking it out of reach of any closing forward and sending it to Alex Brown who cleared the ball. Shortly after that Luke Ward was booked for apparently time wasting after Milnes had conceded a free kick after fouling Stohrer. The free kick was played forward and ended up with Powell on the right-hand side of the box with his back to the goal. Callum twisted and turned and managed to get a sight of goal and fire in a shot but Richardson was equal to it moving low to his left well to keep the ball out. If the goalies were in competition Jackson Smith scored the next point when he fearlessly dived at feet of Warren Clarke when any hesitation could have seen the equaliser. Within a minute he pulled off another cracking save from Jamie Ward and saw the follow up attempt go into the side-netting.

With twenty minutes to go Kettering broke forward on the left through Powell covered by Meikle. Callum took the ball close to the by-line before going down under a challenge from Lindon. Callum wanted a free-kick but all he got was a corner which was verbally contested by the Buxton players with Granite being most vociferous towards the linesman. Buxton had appeared to have questioned every decision by Mr Watson throughout the game and crowding around him when they did get a decision wanting further retribution on the Kettering offender. Brown's inswinging corner was met by the head of Issac Stones but his glancing header flashed across the face of the goal for a goal-kick. This was sent straight back towards the Buxton goal and Powell was in a foot race with Hurst to the ball. Callum just managed to keep the ball in play but that gave the defender the chance to close the gap. Powell cut inside of him and decided to go for glory by trying to curl a low shot into the far corner than square the ball to Stones who might have had a better chance of restoring Kettering's two goal advantage.

With six minutes of regulation time left Buxton were awarded a free kick right on the edge of Kettering's penalty area following a foul on Tom Elliott. It was perfect position for Ben Milnes who had scored many goals from similar spot on the field at Latimer Park. His kick was poor though and Alex Brown on the end of the wall, one of the shortest players on the pitch was able to jump and head the ball away. Two minutes later Barrett was beaten once again at the right back position and the ball was played low into the box where an unmarked Hurst managed to miss an open goal when it appeared easier to score. With only three minutes left both sides made a substitution with Lamine Sherif replacing Ofosu for Kettering and Buxton's Ash Chambers for Milnes.

With only a minute left on the clock Jordon Crawford came on for a shorter than usual cameo appearance. It would be quite long though as it was indicated that there would be a minimum of five additional minutes of play.

In the fourth minute of added time a long ball down the middle wasn't dealt with by Kettering.The ball fell to a Buxton player who hit the ball goalwards but struck Chris Smith's hand from close range. Mr Watson did not hesitate in pointing to the spot but deemed it unintentional and didn't caution Smith. Top scorer de Girolamo took responsibility for the kick and struck it low and hard to Smith's left. Jackson went the right way but was unable to keep out a perfectly aimed shot.  Buxton 2-2 95 mins

There was no more time left to fit any more drama into the game and both teams will try again on Tuesday night.

Full Time: Kettering Town 2  Buxton 2

For the third time this season Kettering failed  to get the job done at the first attempt having conceded a late equaliser to force a replay in the 96th minute against Spalding, a 73rd minute penalty at Leamington and a 95th minute penalty today. Kettering looked to having had the job done at half time and despite putting the Buxton goal under intense pressure at the opening of the second half could not get the critical third to kill off the opposition. Buxton weathered the storm and and showed the confidence of an unbeaten team and finishing the game the stronger side and deserved their reward for pushing all the way to the final whistle. Buxton will start the replay full of confidence certain that they will be able to outplay Kettering on their artificial surface.  However, Kettering tend to play better proportional to the quality of the surface as the team consists of players who are all confident on the ball and can pass the ball as well as the next man. A couple of Kettering players had poor games in relation to their previous appearances and with the talent on the bench waiting for their opportunity to start games will be aware that nobody in the squad has an automatic starting spot. On a positive note a replay gives Kettering another 90 minutes to extend their goal scoring lead over Tottenham.

Kettering Town yellow card: Ward – time wasting

Buxton yellow card:  Dawson – foulde Girolamo - unsporting conduct           

Attendance: 1218

Elgoods Brewery Kettering Town Man-of-the-Match – Jackson Smith chosen by Sponsors Chris James Estate Agents – Even though he was beaten twice the young keeper pulled off a string of great saves to ensure that Kettering would still be in with a shout of qualifying for the first round proper.

Klondike Winning ticket No. 14880 claimed by John Hopkins of Kettering wins £220.