Solihull Moors 0 Blackpool 0
By Luke Turner
All Square with Seasiders As Moors Make the Third Round Draw Writes John Clothier
The windy conditions had abated as Moors took to the pitch for the prize of being in third round draw of the Emirates FA Cup for the very first time. Everyone was fit and Tim Flowers had a full squad from which to choose apart from the cup tied Matt Stenson.
A record crowd of 3005 turned up to hopefully watch history being made
Moors first attack saw Adi Yussuf hold up the ball under pressure as Tyrone Williams burst through whilst the effervescent Jamey Osborne shot low from 22 yards but a deflection made it an easy save for Mark Howard between the sticks for the “Seasiders” Yussuf did well to steal the ball on the left and although a shot was on, he chose to pass
Blackpool were quite happy to weather Moors early pressure but there first attack in the shape of a free kick some 25 yards out was headed to safety by Jamie Record. Luke Maxwell will feel he could have opened the scoring with just 7 minutes played when he got on the end of a long Osborne throw but headed straight at the waiting Howard. Carter almost had a one on one but Howard read the situation and was quickly off his line.
Ryan Boot held from a decent effort from Bola but when a short back pass gave Gnandduilet a sniff, the Blackpool striker caught Boots rushed clearance straight in his groin. It looked very painful but play was hardly delayed. Bola put a good cross in from the left flank which was well read by former Moors favourite Michael Nottingham, but the big man’s header cleared the cross bar. Daniels shot into the side netting as the visitors enjoyed their best spell of the game.
Darren Carter picked up a poor clearance but was wide from 25 yards whilst his free kick from a foul on Danny Wright found Liam Daly marauding at the far post but his header was deflected out of play.
Oh what might have been on 27 minutes when Carter and Osborne caused confusion from a short corner kick which was driven across the face of the goal for Alex Gudger to smash home. It was difficult to see the infringement but the Assistant Referee flagged immediately.
Boot collided with Daly as he attempted to intercept a cross but Gnandduilet failed to take advantage of the dropped ball. Moors broke quickly as Osborne drifted by three defenders but the shot was deflected with Wright, unmarked, waiting. Reckord put through an inch perfect cross but Wright’s header caused Howard little problem
One additional minute saw both teams goalless – which felt just about right notwithstanding the disputed goal.
Blackpool looked revitalised as play resumed and Gnandduilet should have done better from Dodoo’s cross which he side footed to the grateful Boot. The Moors shot stopper then had to back track quickly as a looping cross seemed destined for the far post but fell just wide. Gnandduilet shot wide from the edge of the box as for the first time in the match Blackpool just about edged play.
Yussuf held up a long ball under pressure but his pass to the incoming Osborne was too short whilst at the other end Daly headed clear a piecing cross from Bola. Indeed, the tangerines could have opened their account on 55 minutes but Boot made a fantastic one-handed diving save from Dodoo’s rasping 18 yarder.
It was end to end as both teams looked for the elusive goal to send them into the third round draw; Gnandduilet had a chance as he turned and shot in the box only to see Boot push the ball wide whilst Carter's effort was deflected away to safety
Manager Flowers substituted Maxwell for Jermaine Hylton on 64 minutes and the impact was immediate. That said Moors best chance of the half fell to Yussuf who, on the end of Reckord’s cross. saw his side footed shot deflected to safety. From that the visitors broke with pace with a long ball through from Thompson to substitute, Pritchard, but Boot came out on top in the ensuing one on one
With 12 minutes remaining Kwame Thomas replaced Wright and as both teams continued to attack the danger of an unforced error became only too apparent. Moors back four were, however, simply immense. Blackpool ‘s free kick following Carter's foul on Nottingham looked dangerous but Boot was in no mood to jeopardise his sixth clean sheet on the run and saved superbly.
Hylton was close as he hurled himself at a cross with just the keeper to beat whilst as Moors threw the kitchen sink at their opponents, Osborne’s spectacular volley from Reckord’s cross looked goal bound until a last-ditch clearance saved the day for the away team.
Three minutes of added time ended with both teams going into the draw but forcing a replay at Bloomfield Road to decide which club progresses
Next Tuesday Moors are back in league action at the Automated Technology Group Stadium when Harrogate come to town. They sit one place above us in the league on goal difference - Moors will be looking to put the 3 – 1 defeat at Harrogate earlier in the season behind them. Kick Off is at 7.45 pm
Boot, Williams, Reckord, Storer ©, Daly, Gudger, Osborne (O’Keeffe), Carter, Yussuf, Maxwell (Hylton), Wright (Thomas). Subs not used; Carline, Flowers, Murphey
Report from John Clothier Photos Courtesy of Tom King
And a Big Thank you to the BBC for their terrific coverage.