This was a huge game for the villagers because if they could beat Alfreton they would reach the 1st round proper of the FA cup for the first time in their history with the possibility of playing big names like Wolves or Sheffield United. Expectations were high because Ferriby have played well this season and as the home team they had the backing of a large crowd of over 700 fans hoping to see a cup upset.
Ferriby started brightly and could have taken the lead after just 2 minutes when Anthony Wilson sent a header goalwards but the ball was always rising and flew just over the bar. They then had a brilliant chance in the 9th minute when following a goalmouth scramble from a Ferriby corner the ball fell to Gregg Anderson but his shot was cleared off the line.
Ferriby deservedly took the lead soon after. Nathan Jarman rose brilliantly and looped a header over the top of the helpless Alfreton goalkeeper into the back of the net. It was a fantastic header and Ferriby thoroughly deserved the early lead. 1-0
Ferriby then began to push for a second goal, in the 24th minute Nathan Jarman crossed from the left, Anthony Wilson met the cross with a volley but saw his attempt go high over the crossbar. Ferriby were very much on top and in the 29th minute they almost scored a second goal, centre half Matt Wilson received the ball 25 yards from goal and unleashed a powerful low shot that was tipped past the post by the Alfreton keeper.
Alfreton would eventually make Ferriby pay for all of their missed chances and the equaliser came in the 40th minute. A delightful through ball sent Jake Speight through on goal. Adam Nicklin dived to his left and got a hand on Speight’s lofted shot but he couldn’t prevent the ball from hitting the back of the net. 1-1
Ferriby stared the second half well and had a great chance to retake the lead in the 51st minute. Anthony Wilson got to the by-line and sent in a low cross, Jamie Yates dummied and the ball fell to Liam King but he was leaning back and as a result he sent his shot high over the bar from 6 yards.
Ferriby continued to try and find a way through and they created chances for Yates and Jarman but they couldn’t find the elusive goal. The game turned on its head in the 69th minute when Alfreton took the lead completely against the run of play. Ferriby failed to clear a corner and the ball found John Akinde who hit a shot through a crowd of players and into the bottom left hand corner of the net. 1-2
This was a cruel blow for Ferriby but they pushed to find an equaliser however Alfreton had the next chance. They broke quickly on the counter attack but were denied by a brilliant save from Adam Nicklin. Alfreton killed the game off deep into stoppage time, Ferriby had almost every man forward trying to find a goal but Alfreton cleared their lines and broke clear, the ball eventually found John McGrath who curled in a shot from 18 yards to seal the tie for the visitors.
The cup dream is now over for the villagers. Ferriby played well for large spells of the match but in the end Alfreton punished some poor defending from Ferriby with touches of quality. Ferriby will be kicking themselves for missing several chances with the score at 1-1, if they had converted any of these the result could have been very different. It was pleasing to see another large crowd at the Eon Visual Media stadium and long may this continue. Ferriby must now rely on the FA trophy for a potential trip to Wembley this season.
Man of the Match (Ferriby): Jonathan D’Laryea
Match Report By Sam Shepherd