Thursday 01st September 2005
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Saturday 2
October 2004
FA Cup
Second Qualifying Round
Thomas Hawes reports from Park View Road
Erith & Belvedere 0  
Flackwell Heath 1 Xavier 30

Xavier's strike settles poor cup tie

Erith and Belvedere’s FA cup run came to an end in the 2nd qualifying round after they lost to inform Ryman Division Two outfit Flackwell Heath, the Heathens winning by the odd goal.

A decent crowd saw this tight affair at Park View Road and from the start it was apparent that the game was going to be a close, scrappy FA cup tie. Both sides played pretty poorly in the opening 15 minutes and the defences were definitely in charge.

Then, on 25 minutes, Deres striker Lewis Wood had a couple of great chances to break the deadlock.

Wood tore his way through the away defence and found himself one-on-one with Flackwell goalkeeper McCarthy. Wood pushed the ball away from the keeper to the left, but he had hit it too far and too much towards the left. He could only manage a shot from an acute angle, which went in the side netting.

A couple of minutes later and Wood was on the ball again. His powerful shot left defenders gazing, but McCarthy got something in the way of it.

The ball bounced up nicely for Wood and instead of taking a touch to control and then shooting, Wood went for an ambitious scissor kick. It flew high and wide.

But, Flackwell were still very much in the game. On the half hour mark, the ball was played into Heathens striker Mark Xavier. The Deres defenders kept dropping back and invited Xavier to shoot from 20 yards. He hit the ball exquisitely and it flew into the top corner of the goal, Seitsonen could do nothing to stop it.

There were scenes of jubilation amongst the Flackwell team.

From then on it was to be a frustrating uphill struggle for the Deres. Ryan Briggs came closest for the home side with a long range shot, but the Deres went in a goal down at half-time.

Deres manager Barry Lakin, then made an attacking substitution, bringing on Darren Adams. It was to be Flackwell Heath who would have the first chance of the half to score though.

The Heathens winger totally outpaced Deres captain Wayne Brown, before shooting from an acute angle. The ball ricocheted of the post and was thumped clear by a bemused Deres defence.

Then, Darren Adams had a chance to prove himself. He was played in and found himself clean through on goal. The Flackwell defence soon recovered after a poor touch by Adams.

The last ten minutes were very tense and the Deres had a number of half chances. In the end it wasn’t to be as the Ryman League side held out to a deserved victory.

Lakin said “It was the worst match I have watched, and to make matters worse it was for place in the FA Cup 3rd round qualifier!

Both teams were poor, we never got the result. We lacked everything what the FA Cup is about, passion, enthusiasm, hunger and commitment."