MATCH REPORT: Bristol Manor Farm 2-2 Bideford (5-4 Pens)

A shootout win over Bideford AFC last Saturday showcased Manor Farm’s character as they qualified for the FA Trophy Third Round Qualifying, writes William Ledbury.

Less than 48 hours from the Farm’s victory against Bideford, Manor Farm will host Southern League Premier South outfit Gosport Borough at The Creek for what is set to be another historic match in the club’s history.

Jake Gosling kick-started Saturday’s action with a venomous left-footed free-kick which almost beat Adam Seedhouse-Evans in the Robins net.

Despite dominating the opening exchanges, Farm’s excellent start was hindered when Craig Duff opened the scoring for the visitors. The forward chased down a loose ball, and after a clever cut-back, struck the ball ferociously into Ben John’s left corner.

The Portwaymen would retaliate through Evander Grubb’s strike. The tricky winger chested the ball down with ease, and after making a mockery of the Robins’ defence, Grubb’s strike narrowly flew past the far corner and went behind for a goal kick.

Grubb would eventually turn provider when Owen Howe buried a close-range shot past Seedhouse-Evans to equalise in the 35th minute. Steve Kindon’s switching pass found Grubb who cleverly crossed the ball with the outside of his right boot – finding Howe who made no mistake with the finish.

Despite two half chances for Duff and ex-Farmer Kai Fisher in the second period, Farm’s dominance and Howe’s attacking prowess put them deservdly ahead on the hour. Marcus Day’s exsquisit backheel found fullback Mason Winter who delivered a fantastic first time cross into the area – and Howe rose highest to head past Seedhouse-Evans.

Duff’s second goal in the 90th minute cut Manor Farm’s lead heartbreakingly short, exactly as it had done in the Frome match last weekend. The corner wasn’t dealt with, and due to the FA rules, the Robins forced Manor Farm into a penalty shootout to determine who would face Gosport Borough in the next round.

After three perfect penalties each, Bidford’s Niall Heeney clattered his strike off the far post – allowing Bryant and Kingdon to send Manor Farm into the next round of the Trophy against Gosport Borough.