FA Vase Round-up: It’s everyone’s dream to play at Wembley, but we’ll see how realistic that is from the Third Round, says Kennington boss Dan Scorer
Kennington reached the FA Vase Third Round for the first time in their history after sealing their third win over Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division opposition in the competition by beating Glebe 2-0 at Foxbury Avenue.
Tom Scorer and Gary Lockyer scored in the final eight minutes to ensure Dan Scorer’s 200th game in charge of the club ended in glory.
Kennington last took to the field on 31 October when they sent Fisher crashing out of the competition by winning 5-4 on penalties after a 1-1 draw.
“There were signs, there were certain signs in the last 15-20 minutes. We were forced into making two subs in the last two minutes alone just through people cramping up,” said Scorer.
“It was always going to be the same for both sides. The boys have been working extremely hard in the last four weeks. We’ve put together a programme for them and nothing beats match fitness but I’ve got to give credit to them, they will dig in until the end, which is fantastic.”
Kennington – second place in the Southern Counties East Football League First Division table - have been drawn at home to Sutton Common Rovers in the last 64, which takes place on Saturday 19 December.
Sutton Common Rovers are at the top of the Combined Counties League Premier Division table and beat Southall 4-0 at home in The FA Vase at the weekend.
When asked about winning promotion or playing at Wembley Stadium in The FA Vase Final, Scorer replied: “It’s a tough one, a very, very tough one.
“Realistically we want to be in that league above next year with the sides we’ve played already this season and beat them, as we have during the last two seasons.
“We’re showing already that we’re capable of being there so it’s everyone’s dream to play at Wembley, but we’ll see how realistic that is from the Third Round.”
Glebe were without their manager Gary Alexander, who tested positive for Covid-19 a day before the game.
The Chislehurst based outfit had their assistant manager Damian Briggs in charge with Aaron Fray alongside him in the dug-out.
When asked about his side’s fitness on Saturday, Briggs replied: “I thought it was reasonably decent. Obviously, it’s difficult to get match fitness back after one training session before a massive game in The FA Vase.
“During the lockdown myself and Gary were in constant contact with the players’ and I thought the players’ looked after themselves really well but again having that personal fitness in comparison to match fitness is massively different but I thought we coped well.”
When asked how he coped with the second national lockdown, Briggs replied: “It’s been challenging in terms of finding ways to challenge the players and finding ways between myself and the manager to motivate the players and yourself.
“It’s difficult when you’re itching to go out to the grass and you can’t get out to the grass and you’ve got ideas that you want to try to implement in your session before you get into games.
“I guess like with everyone else is that mental challenge that you’ve got day-to-day.
“People like gaffer and the chairman (Rocky McMillan) where you can pick your phone up and speak to someone and you can talk to someone about football and modern technology has made it a bit easier as well where you can share screens or speak to two or three people at the same time and social media apps.
“As challenging as it is, I made the best out of the worst and I think everyone else in and around Glebe has done the same.
“I must say a special mention to the chairman and the staff for getting the ground prepared and the area opened up where people can sit and have something to eat.
“It’s been challenging for everyone but I think we’re coming through it.”
Glebe’s bar takings certainly were given a shot in the arm following tenants FA Vase win over AFC Hayes yesterday.
Stansfeld reached the Second Round for the first time in their history after winning their delayed First Round tie on 4-3 on penalties after a 2-2 draw after 90 minutes.
Striker Macey Malyon scored twice for Stansfeld, who had centre-half Greg Summersby sent-off at the end of the game for a game-saving professional foul.
Stansfeld welcome Hellenic League Premier Division leaders Flackwell Heath to Foxbury Avenue this coming Saturday, 12 December (15:00) and a trip to Southern Counties East Football League Premier Division leaders Chatham Town will await the winners seven days later.
“You only have to look at the bar, we pack it out and we’ll have a big support and we’ll have a go, that’s all we can do,” said Stansfeld joint-manager Billy Hamlin.
Former Stansfeld player, Luke Rooney, attended the game and now plays for Scott Lindsey at Chatham Town.
Goalkeeper Charlie Cottrell and his team-mates play for nothing and Hamlin was full of praise for his shot-stopper, having made one save during the 12 kick penalty shoot-out.
“We’ve got Luke Rooney here (watching today) and you can’t tell me that Charlie couldn’t play for Chatham? He’s that good but we’re lucky to have him,” said Hamlin.
“You can’t tell me that Charlie can’t go and get a couple of hundred quid somewhere.
“The spirit in there, we go in some teams bars and you turn round and their players aren’t even in there and you think ‘alright, what’s going on there?’
“It’s camaraderie, the boys stick together, we all go out together, we have a drink together, we laugh and we joke.”
Hamlin, 43, has been involved at Stansfled since the age of 18, while his fellow manager Jamie Phipps, 51, first joined the club at the age of 10.
“We’ll never go and manage anywhere else. I’ll never leave, I’ll never go anywhere,” added Hamlin.
Elsewhere in The FA Vase, Corinthian suffered more penalty shoot-out despair as they crashed out of the Second Round by losing at Hanworth Villa.
Michael Golding’s side lost to Hebburn Town in a penalty shoot-out in the Semi-Finals last season - and went out by losing 6-5 on penalties on Saturday.
Luke Tanner gave the Kent side a 2-0 lead but hosts Hanworth scored twice in the final 10 minutes and held their nerve from the spot.
Hanworth Villa will now travel to Littlehampton Town in the last 64 after the Southern Combination First Division side pulled off another shock victory by beating Sheppey United.
Ernie Batten’s side were held to a 3-3 draw before Littlehampton Town – who beat Beckenham Town at Eden Park Avenue at the first hurdle – celebrated by winning 5-4 on penalties.
Billy Bennett scored his 11th goal of the season and Renford Tenyue and Timothy Ogunrinde opened their goalscoring accounts.
Chatham Town maintained their impressive goalscoring form by coming away from Horley Town with a 5-3 win.
Rooney scored twice, with other goals coming from Dan Bradshaw and former Dartford pair, Ryan Hayes and Andy Pugh.
Striker Bradshaw has now joined attacking midfielder Jack Evans on 18 goals this season, while winger Hayes has scored 11 goals for the big-spending club.
Deal Town were held to a 2-2 draw at Saltdean United and held their nerve from the spot by winning 3-2 in the shoot-out.
George Stannard and Ben Chapman notched for the Kent side and Derek Hares’ men will welcome Binfield to The Charles Sports Ground in the Third Round.
Coach Steve King said: “Wow! Couldn’t have written that Vase draw. We had two great games against Binfield last year. Let’s see what this year brings.”