Whickham produced a stunning second-half performance to clinch victory late on over Albion Sports at the Citadel. WRITES ADAM TONES.
The Lang Jacks advanced to the First Round of the FA Vase thanks to a Jamie Dunn brace, Shay Richardson, and an injury-time goal by substitute Nathan Greenwood.
Ryan Clay, Hass Gorji and Helmo Silva scored for the hosts, twice giving Albion a two-goal cushion.
After picking up a second yellow card, Whickham striker Scott Robson was sent off deep into injury time.
Albion started the match the brighter of the two teams and opened the scoring inside the first five minutes.
Right back Clay latched onto the end of a defence-splitting through ball before composing himself to slot the ball past Nathan Harker.
The visitor’s best chance in the first half fell to striker Scott Robson after half an hour.
Robson managed to get on the end of Kaleb Young’s corner, but his strike was saved by Albion goalkeeper George McMahon.
The home team continued to cause Whickham problems in defence and doubled their lead on 34 minutes when the ball was squared across goal for Gorji to tap in from six yards out.
Whickham manager Tony Fawcett let his frustrations known at half-time and his team responded with a much improved second-half display.
Nathan Greenwood was introduced late on in the first half and caused the hosts all sorts of problems down the left-hand side.
The Lang Jacks managed to get themselves back into the match when Dunn was brought down inside the penalty area and he made no mistake from the spot.
The home team almost instantly regained their two-goal lead, but Nathan Harker was alert to pull off a great save denying Albion from a free-kick.
There was nothing a fully stretched Harker could do only minutes later when Silva unleashed a 30-yard strike into his top right-hand corner.
Albion’s two-goal cushion lasted less than 10 minutes, Richardson pulling one back from close range for the Lang Jacks.
The second goal was a well-worked team goal shifting the ball from left to right before Smith’s inch-perfect cross was tucked away by Richardson from six yards out.
Whickham equalised through Dunn minutes later, Smith was played through on goal, but McMahon was down quickly to deny what looked like a certain goal.
Dunn who was a handful all match was perfectly positioned to hammer home the rebound and grab his second goal of the match.
Whickham were applying all the pressure in the search of a winning goal and thought they had scored when Young’s flicked effort was heading into McMahon’s top right-hand corner.
Albion goalkeeper McMahon wasn’t to be beaten though somehow managing to get his fingertips to the ball to tip it over his crossbar for a corner.
After a scramble in the box, Whickham’s pressure finally paid off when Albion failed to clear their lines.
The ball fell to Greenwood inside of the box from around 15 yards out, the striker curling his shot past several Albion players into McMahon’s far right-hand corner.
A delighted away end erupted which saw several Mourinho-esque celebrations down the touchline as Greenwood celebrated his match-winning goal.
Whickham will be on the road again in the First Round of the FA Vase when they travel to Holker Old Boys on Saturday 22nd October.
Whickham team: Harker, Howard, Burrell ©, Garside (Greenwood 38’), Yoxall, Moody (Galbraith 88’), Young, Richardson (Agnew 88’), Smith, Dunn, S. Robson.
Subs not used: Below, Lizinde, Peareth, Priest.
Goalscorers: Dunn 57’ (pen), 75’, Richardson 73’, Greenwood 90’.
Referee: James Gallagher
Man of the Match: Dale Burrell