Boreham Wood 0 Dunfermline 0Saturday, 8th Sep 2018
Irn Bru Cup Second Round: Craigen, Muirhead and Higginbotham start. Dunfermline won the penalty shoot out 6-5
Dunfermline progress having won the penalty shoot out 6-5
Following the likes of Berwick Rangers, Everton, West Bromwich Albion and Tottenham, Boreham Wood were added to list of English opponents Dunfermline Athletic have faced in cup matches. This Irn Bru Cup tie took the Fifers to Meadow Park in Hertfordshire.
The location was buzzing in anticipation of the big kick off but most were thinking of the imminent start of this year’s Strictly at the nearby Elstree Studios. Further star spotting was possible with the latest Celebrity Big Brother evictee Hardeep Singh Kohli spending his first night back in sanity at the team’s hotel.
So how would a Scottish Championship side fair against a team in the fifth tier of English football? Would the Pars be in the dance off, would they face eviction or could they come, conquer and restore some pride in Scottish football?
Manager Allan Johnston was without Ryan Williamson who was on international duty with Scot Gemmill’s Scotland Under 21s. James Craigen, Robbie Muirhead and Kallum Higginbotham started in place of Williamson, Devine and Hippolyte.
Boreham Wood made four changes from the side that defeated Chesterfield in midweek, Connor Smith, Halkett-Fairchild, Immanuel Parry, and Justin Shaibu came in replacing Tom Champion, Mark Ricketts, Josh Umerah and Àngelo Balanta.
The hosts kicked off attacking the goal in front of the sizeable and vociferous travelling support. First shot of any description came in fourth minute from Joe Thomson but his 30 yard out effort dropped outside the right upright.
Three minutes later Craigen accepted a short pass and snapped a low effort that went outside that same post. A few misplaced pass and then a dispossession led to The Wood getting an eleventh minute chance but fortunately Lee Robinson was well position to make an easy take on Halkett-Fairchild’s shot from the edge of the penalty box.
There was an opportunity for the Scots when James Vincent robbed Kieran Murtagh midway into the Wood half. He laced a good ball to Muirhead to his left but his cross was intercepted and in the follow up Thomson drove the ball back towards goal, reaching Faissal El Bakhtaoui on the 18 yard line but he was closed down before he could turn and shoot.
The midpoint of the first half arrived with both teams having seen periods of possession but nothing had caused the keepers any threat whatsoever. Shaibu made a strong run to set up Ricky Shakes for a speculative cross into the Pars box from the right but the defence cleared the rather overhit delivery.
On 25 minutes a fine El Bakhtaoui run up the right ended with a great cross into the box and Louis Longridge released a powerful attempt that was only kept out by Parry diving in to make a painful block. Definitely the best chance of the match this far.
Higginbotham earned the first corner of the game on the half hour but Muirhead’s setpiece from the right did not create any danger with Thomson firing a loose effort well wide. Two minutes later Murtagh cut down Higginbotham for a Dunfermline free kick midway inside the Wood half but Lee Ashcroft could not reach high enough to connect with Muirhead’s diagonal ball.
There had been few chances in the first half for either side to affect the score line and everyone who had made the long journey south hoped that they would see goals in the second half to avoid a penalty shoot out.
Half time: Boreham Wood 0 Dunfermline Athletic 0
The second half was not two minutes old before El Bakhtaoui has an attempt, but sadly wide. Sorba Thomas raised the hopes of the home fans with a strong run up the right but Ashcroft dealt with his cross. Then Femi Ilesanmi copied the idea getting up the left to cross and Halkett-Fairchild’s header went well over the bar. Boreham Wood kept up the pressure with Thomas again making ground up the right but his delivery caused no problems.
In just the eighth minute of the half Kallum Higginbotham was forced to retire and Myles Hippolyte came on in his place. The sub immediately got in a useful cross and then Muirhead crashed a shot on target that the captain, former Hibs player David Stephens headed away. Thomson latched on to the clearance but his well connected shot cleared the crossbar and went over the low wall out of the ground.
In 62 minutes Robinson slid out to deny Smith after Hackett-Fairchild had worked to be able to send in a low pass from the right corner flag. Three minutes later Muirhead tried to lift the ball over Jamal Fyfield just 20 yards out and the Pars were awarded a free kick. Raigen aimed his effort round the three man wall at the far post but his the chest of Shakes.
Malaury Martin replaced Joe Thomson as the match entered its final quarter and the National League side withdrew Shaibu to bring on their number nine, Josh Umerah.
Muirhead forced a 70th minute corner off Murtagh but unfortunately that was headed clear by the big defence. Robinson did well to get above the towering challengers at a 73rd minute corner. Then at another just two minutes later Murtagh’s low delivery from the right was left for Smith to strike narrowly over.
Aidan Connolly came on for Louis Longridge before a 76th minute corner. Martin’s cross goal attempt was turned behind for another and this time Martin’s cross dropped for Mark Durnan at the far lost. His strike was blocked and Vincent smashed a return from 20 yards out that went wide.
There was increasing urgency shown by both sides as the time ran out. Vincent’s 81st minute shot yielded only a corner and when Martin sent that in from the right the defence headed clear. A Hippolyte ball in from the right didn’t quite reach Muirhead and next Connolly popped a cross in from the left but that was easy meat for the former Arsenal keeper.
With 88 minutes gone Hippolyte picked out Connolly on the right but clean through on goal, his shot was saved by the keeper and then Vincent came close to catching a cross in front of Ryan Huddart. There were three added minutes at the end and it was the Fifers who pushed the hardest but neither side could break the deadlock.
Full time: Boreham Wood 0 Dunfermline 0
The match was decided on penalties taken at the end where most of the Pars fans were located.
1. Malaury Martin scores high left: 1-0
2, Kieran Murtagh scores keeper goes other way: 1-1
3. James Craigen nets to the right: 2-1
4. Josh Umeragh scores to keepers left: 2-2
5. Myles Hippolyte scores low left footed effort to right post: 3-2
6. Jamal Fyfield scores with left footed to right: 3-3
7. Faissal El Bakhtaoui nets sending keeper wrong way: 4-3
8. Femi Ilesanmi smashes home: 4-4
9. Aidan Connolly left footed nets: 5-4
10. Recto Hackett-Fairchild low to left: 5-5
11.Robbie Muirhead left footed drive low left: 6-5
12. Connor Smith hits crossbar and ball rebounds out: 6-5
As if pre arranged the sun came out and the journey back home suddenly looked much brighter.
SUBS NOT USED: Mark Ricketts, Jack Gibbs, Dan Creese, Alex Morgan, Fred Burbidge (GK).
DUNFERMLINE: Lee Robinson: James Craigen, Lee Ashcroft (c), Mark Durnan, Jackson Longridge: Kallum Higginbotham (Myles Hippolyte 54), James Vincent, Joe Thomson (Malaury Martin 68), Robbie Muirhead: Faissal El Bakhtaoui, Louis Longridge (Aidan Connolly 76).
SUBS NOT USED: Andy Ryan, Lewis McCann, Cammy Gill (GK).
REFEREE: Evan Boyce
WEATHER: Cloudy 18C
NEXT MATCH: Ladbrokes Championship (home) v Alloa Athletic, Saturday 15th September 2018, 3.00pm kick off at East End Park.
Half time draw ticket number 05491 won £80
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Preview Boreham WoodSaturday, 8th Sep 2018
Irn Bru Cup Second Round: (away) Saturday 8th September 2018, kick off 1.00pm at Meadow Park, Borehamwood
The reward for knocking out Inverness Caley Thistle, the holders of the Irn Bru Cup, is an away tie at Meadow Park against English National League side, Boreham Wood. After the initial shock of the draw, the search on the map to locate the club and the quandary over how on earth to get there, most fans have embraced the opportunity to travel to a different venue.
Boreham Wood was formed in 1948 and over the years has worked its way through the maze of English non-League football to get very close to the big time last season. They reached what is now called the National League in 2015 and last season came within a whisker of becoming a league club. They reached the play off final only to be beaten by Tranmere Rovers at Wembley.
Boreham Wood are undefeated in their eight home games since losing 2-0 to Macclesfield Town in April.
Form Last Six Matches
Inverness Caley Thistle (H) L 0-3
Ayr United (A) L 1-4
Hearts (H) L 0-1
Inverness Caley Thisle (A) W 2-1
Ross County (H) L 1-3
Dundee United (A) W 3-2
Chesterfield (H) W 1-0
Braintree (H) D 1-1
Maidstone (A) W 2-1
Halifax (H) W 2-1
Leyton Orient (A) L 0-1
Gateshead (H) D 1-1
P4 W1 D0 L3 F5 A12 GD-7 PTS3
English National League
P10 W4 D3 L2 F8 A8 GD0 PTS15
Last Time Out
DUNFERMLINE (v Inverness Caley Thistle): Lee Robinson: Lee Ashcroft (c), Mark Durnan, Danny Devine: Ryan Williamson (Kallum Higginbotham 65), James Vincent (Aidan Connolly 78), Louis Longridge, Joe Thomson, Jackson Longridge: Faissal El Bakhtaoui, Myles Hippolyte (Robbie Muirhead 58)
SUBS NOT USED: Andy Ryan, James Craigen, Malaury Martin, Cammy Gill (GK).
BOREHAM WOOD (v Chesterfield): Ryan Huddart: Femi Ilesanmi, Mark Ricketts, Josh Umerah, Ricky Shakes, David Stephens, Tom Champion (Immanuel Parry 83), Kieran Murtagh, Jamal Fyfield, Sorba Thomas (Justin Shaibu 54), Àngelo Balanta
SUBS NOT USED: Bradley Ash, Kane Smith, Fred Burbidge (GK).
Above: Dunfermline players celebrate knocking out Inverness in the First Round of this season`s Irn Bru Cup
Match Ticket Information
Boreham Wood have announce the introduction of an online ticketing system for our Irn Bru Cup tie against Dunfermline Athletic, on Saturday, September 8.
The state of the art ticketing system, in partnership with Event Genius, will be launched ahead of the game against Dunfermline Athletic, and both home and away supporters will be able to purchase tickets online.
Once purchased, tickets can be downloaded and printed at home and brought to the game for entry.
Ticketing prices for the Irn Bru Cup game will be as follows for those who purchase in advance:
Adult – £18.00
OAP – £13.00
U16 – £8.00
U12 – £5.00
How to get there
Boreham Wood Football Club
Meadow Park, Broughinge Road, Borehamwood
Hertfordshire, WD6 5AL
From M1 Southbound – Exit J4 to Edgware onto A41 (Watford by pass), Keep going straight over at the roundabout and two sets of traffic lights until you hit Apex Corner, turn left towards A1, over Stirling Corner, exit slip road into Borehamwood join A5135 at the third roundabout take 2nd exit into Brook Road, Broughinge Road is first turning on the right, after big car park.
Elstree & Boreham Wood (Thameslink Line) – From station walk through High Street, go straight over first roundabout, at next roundabout go down first exit (Brook road) continue down about 500 yards take right turn after car park (Broughinge Road) Follow Road to entrance.
Facts about Boreham Wood
Manager Luke Garrard is only 32 years old, one of the youngest managers in the top five levels of the game in England. Having started as a trainee at Spurs, he made 11 appearances for Swindon Town before making his mark at AFC Wimbledon. A cult hero with Wimbledon’s fans, he made over 100 appearances for the club, mainly as a right-back but also occasionally in the centre of midfield.
He then made 140 appearances for the Wood being appointed Ian Allinson’s Assistant in 2013 before taking over at the reigns in October 2015.
Club captain, David Stephen has played Dunfermline before when he as a Hibs player. In season 2011-2012 he was in the side that lost 1-0 to the Pars at Easter Road and then played in the return at East End Park where the capital team won 3-2.
Stephens left Hibs in August 2012 and signed for Football League Two club Barnet. Stephens featured regularly for Barnet and was voted Barnet’s Player of the Season by supporters in 2012/13 and again in 2013/14. David signed for Boreham Wood in October 2015 .
Ricky Shakes has played 12 times for Guyana and was a team mate of James Vincent while the pair were at Kidderminster in season 2012-2013.
Striker Josh Umerah is on loan from Charlton Athletic and while he was on loan at Kilmarnock in 2017 he played against Danny Devine. The 6ft 1in forward rose through the Addicks’ Academy and the 21 year old is described as a strong and powerful frontman. Tall and imposing presence with pace to burn.
Columbian Àngelo Balanta, Dan Woodards, Femi Ilesanmi, Ricky Shakes and Mark Ricketts were all in the Boreham Wood team that Aidan Connolly played against in August 2016 while at York City.
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