Newark FC 4-0 Deeping Rangers: FA Cup win sets up preliminary qualifying round clash with Maltby Main
Newark FC cruised to victory in front of a sell-out Lowfields in what was the first FA Cup match in the town since 1961.
A capped capacity of 300 chanted Wembley-themed songs in the final minutes as Newark ran out comfortable 4-0 winners over Deeping Rangers to book a spot in the preliminary qualifying round.
The Highwaymen’s win set up a tie at Maltby Main on Saturday, September 12, who, despite having ten men, staged a late comeback to beat Handsworth 2-1.
The winner of that fixture will earn a spot in the first of four qualifying rounds, leading to the FA Cup first round proper.
Joint-manager Craig Roche, speaking after the full-time whistle, said the win was one of the biggest results in the club’s recent history.
“With it being a cup game of this size, there is always a chance of it going either way,” said Roche.
“To go out there and win like that — it is huge. It is a huge part of the club’s history.
“Deeping play at the same level as us and finished in a similar position to us last season, so going into the game it was seen as a bit of a 50-50.
“But it is fair to say we dominated the game and should have been more comfortable going into half-time.
“And, to be fair to the lads, they kept plugging away in the second half and they got exactly what they deserved with the 4-0 win.”
Newark started the brighter of the two sides and should have broken the deadlock after eight minutes when left winger Luis Rose hit the outside of the post from close range.
Two loud roars from the crowd inside 60 seconds on 15 minutes added more urgency to the game.
First, a late challenge on Newark’s Liam King was ignored by the referee, before marauding right back Tom Potts cannoned an effort over from distance.
Having threatened numerous times through the pace of Kevin Bastos down the right, Newark took the lead on 43 minutes.
The goal came through Danny Meadows, who converted Craig Westcarr’s deep free-kick from the right after Bastos cleverly drew the foul.
The second-half began as the first finished — with Newark on top.
And, on 49 minutes, it was 2-0. This time through an unlikely goalscorer in Liam King, who curled a floated effort from right to left from 25 yards.
On the hour mark, Bastos then forced an own goal after stealing the ball high up the pitch and firing a low cross into the box.
The fourth and final goal came from centre-half Rashaan Francis in the 85th minute as he half-volleyed a loose ball from close range after a mix-up from Meadows’ corner.
Having been a constant threat, Roche praised Bastos when asked about his performance.
“He had a strong game,” said Roche.
“I look at him as a rough diamond. For a defender, he is very difficult to deal with.
“Sometimes he doesn’t know what he’s going to do himself and when you have a player like that on the ball there is no stopping him.
“He is only going to get better as well, so it is exciting for us.”
Roche also highlighted the Lowfields crowd who made it difficult for Deeping.
“We say it every year, they (the supporters) are huge,” he said.
“We had limited numbers tonight but there would have been no problem in topping 600.
“We have seen the difference they make over the past few seasons, especially when we play here.
“We want to make it uncomfortable to play here. We want it to be a horrible place to come and they are a massive part in that.
“They spur the lads on as well so its great for them.”
On Saturday, Newark begin their league campaign at home to Worcester City (3pm kick-off).