We recovered from the shock of conceding an early goal to win 3-1 with all the goals coming in the first half. With Steve Cann still injured Gareth Couch continued in goal.
We went behind after 3 minutes, an attack down the Monmouth right saw the ball crossed in low for Sam Oxley to turn it in from close range. The pace and movement of the Monmouth forward line was causing us problems early on. While not out of the game we were struggling to find an end product in front of goal, Kaid Mohamed picked up a loose ball and drove at the Monmouth goal but with only the keeper to beat he shot straight at him. That however stirred us into action and Noah Daley had a powerful shot tipped over for a corner with Lewis Holmes heading wide amid calls for a hand ball by the Monmouth defence. Kaid Mohamed was again in on goal but the keeper tipped his shot away for a corner, Sacha Walters beat a couple of defenders but could only shoot at the keeper. With pressure building on the visitor’s defence we drew level, Noah Daley beat his marker and shot, the ball hit the post and rebounded to Sacha Walters who made no mistake from close range. We won the ball from the restart, Noah Daley again went down the left, crossed the ball into the area but no-one could turn it in to the net. Ben Symons played a great ball wide to Noah Daley, again he easily beat his marker, his shot hit the post and rebounded to the keeper. With 5 minutes to half time we could have gone behind, we over played it at the back, lost possession but Gareth Couch made a fine save. We were guilty of this a couple of times before the interval but each time Couchie saved us. He made a terrific double save when the odds were on a Monmouth goal, we played the ball forward and Liam McCreesh played the ball in for Noah Daley to score. So, from looking at a 2-1 down less than a minute later we were 2-1. Just to make it worse for Monmouth Brad Flay scored his first goal for the club to make it 3-1 at the interval.
There was a quiet start to the second half but Gareth Couch again saved on 51 minutes. On 64 Minutes Monmouth cleared a Lido corner and broke quickly but once again Gareth Couch foiled the visitor’s attack. They now dominated possession for a period of time but failed to hit the target with any meaningful shots. With 15 minutes to go Kaid Mohamed played a square ball for Sacha Walters but his shot went over the bar. Monmouth responded with an attack but again shot over the bar. Noah Daley beat his marker and played a low ball across the box for Bradley Flay who got a touch with the goal at his mercy but the ball was cleared. Patrick Finneral played the ball wide for Kaid Mohamed who also crossed the into the 6 yard area, this time Liam McCreesh failed to turn the ball into the net. In added on time Kaid Mohamed went in on goal, rounded the keeper but was tackled deep in the area with the referee waving away appeals for a penalty. A good cup tie played in a good spirit with Monmouth by no means overawed.