Wokingham & Emmbrook manager Dan Bateman is delighted with the start his team has made to the season after they produced a shock result in the FA Vase to beat Chipping Sodbury at Lowther Road.
The cup tie went the distance into extra-time after the sides couldn’t be separated after 90 minutes with the score locked at 1-1. After Chipping were reduced to 10 players, the Sumas took full advantage and put the game to bed as Elliot Rushforth scored the winning goal.
“We were really pleased with the results. I thought we played well, created a lot of chances and dominated the game for large periods,” said Sumas boss Dan Bateman.
“It was a little bit closer than I would have liked it to be, but I’m delighted with the performance from all of the lads.
“They’ve had a difficult start to their season, but they are a good side. They have some really decent players and play some quality football which tested us.
“I thought that defensively we were rock solid. There was a 10-minute spell in the second half where we had a wobble, we took our eye off the ball and maybe got a bit too comfortable.
“They got back into the game, but what I was pleased with was the reaction of my players after that. We regrouped and went again, and were unlucky not to win the game in normal time.
“Once they had a player sent off and it went into extra time, I always felt that we would be the ones to press and try to find the winner before the lottery of penalties.
“Sometimes the intensity drops after you conceded, but we showed real grit and determination to win the game.”
Bateman emphasised the confidence that he had in his side to win the game before the tie would have to be decided by a penalty shootout.
“We had a discussion five or six minutes into extra-time, talking about the possibility of penalties but I said that we needed to focus and try and win the game,” Bateman continued.
“Penalties are a lottery, and often managers can sit there and take their chances with a shootout but I wanted us to try and get a winner with the game still in our hands.
“We created a lot of chances to win the game in extra-time so we were really pleased when the goal came.”
A crowd of 275 were in attendance at Lowther Road at the Sumas booked their place in the next round of the FA Vase, where they will play against Thornbury Town.
“We’ve had four games at Lowther Road now and the attendance for all of them has been really good. It’s great that people are coming out to support us and we’re getting positive results for them.
“It’s brilliant to get another home tie in the next round. I don’t know an awful lot about Thornbury, but I know they have started well in the league.
“I’ve got a good squad here and we’re looking to do as well in the league as we can as a priority, but the FA Vase is an added bonus. It’s a competition we feel that we can do well in and hopefully get a good result in the next round.