Hayes & Yeading's 100% start to the season continued on Saturday as United won a tough FA Cup game against Bognor Regis Town by the odd goal in seven at the SKYex Community Stadium after recovering from going behind after just 46 seconds.
Manager Paul Hughes made a single change to the side that won at Beaconsfield on Bank Holiday Monday with fit again Sanmi Odelusi replacing Lanre Ladipo who would have been cup-tied anyway.
The visitors were out of the blocks like a rocket, approaching the United goal immediately from kick-off, Kayne Diedrick-Roberts collected a crossfield pass on the left before moving inside and unleashing a shot after 31 seconds that came back off the upright, the ball was quickly recovered by the Rocks and
fed to Jordy Mongoy, his first effort was well blocked by Jordan Norville-Williams but neither defender nor 'keeper Ravan Constable could do anything to stop Mongoy's follow-up from flying into the United net.
In the tenth minute the visitors almost had another when Ashton Leigh received the ball from the right, his smart touch and quick shot being well saved one handed by the diving Constable.
Three minutes later the tie was level, Hassan Jalloh took possession of the ball on the left of the Rocks area and turned past Calvin Davies, only to be tripped as he moved on goal, with referee Mr Nunes pointing to the spot. Moses Emmanuel stepped up only for his kick to be well saved by Amadou Tangara but thankfully for United Jalloh was quickest to the loose bouncing ball and was able to hook it home from an acute angle.
It took United just six minutes to turn the scoreline on its head as a quick Keano Robinson throw-in was flicked on by Emmanuel to Jalloh, his neat pass to Francis Amartey saw the striker fire past Tangara and United were ahead.
Five minutes later the visitors created another opening as Diedrick-Roberts collected a forward ball only to fire high over the top when well placed and with just five minutes to the break a neat double interchange between Sanmi Odelusi and Jalloh saw the latters' effort blocked inside the six yard box with Tangara pouncing on the loose ball.
First half stoppage time saw the visitors find an equaliser. Nathan Odokonyero found space for a shot, his effort was superbly turned aside by the diving Constable however the loose ball was collected by Leigh who fired it low across from the left with the ball squirming in off the United stopper for an unfortunate own goal.
There was stil time before the break for Omar Rowe to break into the box from the left, his effort was deflected wide and the half closed out at 2-2.
The second half started with United pressing early doors, just four minutes had been played when Rowe raced away on the right before playing the ball inside to substitute Adam Cash who picked out Amartey in front of goal, his first time shot being superbly saved by Tangara and the ball was cleared to safety although the stopper needed treatment soon after but was fine to continue after the "sponge man" did his job.
A scramble in the United six yard box just before the hour mark ended thankfully with Constable diving in to grab the ball and fifteen minutes later United thought they had the lead again when Amartey received the ball in the box and fed it back into the stride of Rico Greco, his drive crashing off the underside of the crossbar and despite United's appeals that the ball crossed the line nothing was forthcoming from the officials and play continued.
United only had to wait three more minutes to go ahead again though as Emmanuel collected the ball on the edge of the Rocks box, he moved swiftly across the line before unleashing an unstoppable shot that flew beyond Tangara into the top corner of the net for his sixth in as many games.
Emmanuel went close again three minutes later, a Tangara clearance downfield was headed back by United skipper Liam McDevitt, Emmanuel collected the loose ball, turned and fired off a shot that was deflected just wide of the upright.
In the 86th minute Rocks substitute Ben Mendoza tried his luck from 20 yards and despite a double deflection en route, Constable held the effort comfortably.
We entered a minimum of four additional minutes with United holding the smallest of leads, within a minute though that was doubled, as was Emmanuel's tally for the afternoon. Amos Nasha received the ball on the right before picking out Emmanuel in the middle and he slotted the ball past Tangara to put United 4-2 ahead (photo below).
The visitors kept fighting despite the lateness in proceedings and the scoreline and they could have had a couple of their own in quick succession. Mendoza worked space for himself again in the box and tried to curl the ball into the far corner only to be denied by an excellent one handed save by Constable who must have had his vision impaired by the sheer number of bodies in front of him.
A minute later though the United lead was indeed reduced when substitute Gavin McCallum latched onto a loose ball in the United area and fired past Constable to set up what could have been a grandstand final couple of minutes however the only further chance came at the other end as Rowe broke into the area and while most would have expected him to try his luck, he played the ball left to Amartey but his effort was smothered by Tangara and the game closed out with United just edging a thriller for the neutrals.
Report by Kevin Watts.
Photos by Stacio Fernandes ©.
United Man of the Match: Omar Rowe.
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