• Ryan Sheehan

The Citizens exit the Buildbase FA Vase

The Citizens travelled to near neighbours Abingdon United yesterday in a Buildbase FA Vase Second Round Qualifier but would unfortunately exit the tournament after the match ended 3-1.

Match Report by Nick Bird

It was a difficult result to take on a hot Saturday afternoon at The Northcourt for the Citizens as they were knocked out of the FA Vase by Abingdon United in the 2nd Qualifying round.

Abingdon United took an early lead in the seventh minute when the ball was crossed in from the right side, and a late runner headed the ball into the left side of the goal to put our hosts ahead. Abingdon United 1-0 Reading City.

Abingdon looked to increase their lead with a long-range shot in the eighteenth minute, but it was easily saved by Charlie York to deny the home side doubling their lead.

Only minutes after that chance York took a short goal kick to Steve Lee who dribbled the ball upfield a bit as nobody closed him down, he saw the opportunity to send a direct ball for left winger Mo Davies to chase and the pass was played to perfection as it went over the right-back. Davies cut inside dropping one defender and got past another and was by the penalty spot with only the goalkeeper to beat and put it past him to tie up the game on the twenty fourth minute. Abingdon United 1-1 Reading City.

The Citizens had the momentum following the goal and thirty four minutes in Davies played an excellent low cross in for Matt Stockill, but he couldn’t direct his shot goalwards, and the ball went wide of the left post.

Thirty six minutes in the referee came over to the technical area to book Simon Johnson for dissent, after making his feelings on decisions made by the officials known. In our gaffer's defence the officials did make some shocking decisions yesterday afternoon.

Forty three minutes in, the Citizens would look for goal again, following some good play Arthur Furness was passed the ball and after cutting in to the box looked almost certain he'd score but before he pulled the trigger and took a shot on goal, the Abingdon United defence were able to guide the ball away from danger.

Abingdon almost retook the lead on the forty fifth minute and right before half time after an incredible cross from a corner looked goal-bound, but Charlie York made a good save to keep the sides level going into the break.

At half time, you could tell there were goals to come in the second half, potentially for both sides as either could have had the lead going into the break.

Only ten minutes into the second half City received their second sin bin of the season as Austin Best got sent to the sidelines for dissent. Just after the sin bin, Abingdon United were awarded a penalty as Devonn Reid went to chest the ball, but it hit his upper arm and the linesman flagged for a penalty. The City players vented their frustrations with the referee as they believed it was not intentional, but the referee ignored the appeals. The penalty was only just put away into the bottom left corner as Charlie York got a hand to it, but unfortunately for City, it wasn’t quite strong enough to keep the ball out of the net. Abingdon United 2-1 Reading City.

Reading City almost pulled the game back to 2-2 after some nice passing play. De Rama played it to Furness who passed it up to Cashin-Murray who put his shot from the edge of the D just past the post.

Reading City were almost caught out on the counter by Abingdon United as they committed men forward looking for an equaliser, but Arthur Furness defended well, and the Abingdon forward put his shot well over the bar.

Reading City were denied another goal after a perfect cross from the right-wing by Mo Davies for substitute McKoy Palmer to head towards goal, but the Abingdon goalkeeper pulled off a great save to keep his side in the lead.

Reading City looked like they were going to be the ones to take the lead, but Abingdon scored again on the seventy sixth minute after their substitute timed his run well so that he was played onside by Arthur Furness and he was through with only York to beat, but York closed him down and saved his shot. The save sent the ball to another Abingdon player and was able to go past York, who was outside his box now, with the Abingdon attacker being chased down by Steve Lee, he passed it to the left-winger for Abingdon who was left open, and he finished it past the Reading City defender on the line to send his side through to the next round of the FA Vase. Abingdon United 3-1 Reading City.

Seventy nine minutes in the Citizens had a good chance to score, with a free kick on the edge of the box which Matt Stockill would take, the ball beat the wall but unfortunately it had so much power behind it that it sailed over the crossbar rather than dipping for anyone to put away.

A disappointing week for the Citizens as they've been got knocked out of two cups. Hopefully, they can turn it around next week vs Lydney Town (Saturday 21st September, 3pm KO) in the league who currently sit in third with a game in hand on us.

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