TEN-man Worcester City limped out of the FA Vase with a meek 2-0 defeat to Desborough Town.

Tom Fishwick’s raking pass out of the back was headed down the right for Lamar Parkes to breeze away unchallenged and cross for Jason Turner to take a touch and slot home from inside the six-yard box 10 minutes after half-time.

Parkes then drove a free-kick to the far post for Liam Boath, the shortest player on the pitch, to head in unmarked and end City’s Wembley dream.

Sports reporter Andy Mitchell looks at where the battle was lost.


Pockets of blame could be found everywhere around the Victoria Ground but overall, a lack of surety and purpose across the board made for what was arguably the worst performance of the Midland Football League era.

City’s natural game never flowed all bar two five-minute spells in each half.

The only player to show the purpose expected was James Baldwin but he lacked the end product to match his levels of effort.


Attentions will turn to what City got wrong but Desborough came with a game plan and executed it to perfection.

The visitors, who ply their trade at the same level as City, had not kept a clean sheet all season going into this one and relied on a pressing game with direct balls into the channels.

A ruffled City wilted under the scrutiny and lacked the purpose Town showed on their sporadic forays into the final third.


Man-in-the-middle Joshua Brookland lacked authority and many of his calls were naïve.

Inconsistencies over when to blow up or show cards added uncertainty throughout and the lack of flow that created suited Desborough.

Whether or not it should have will be a matter for debate but it certainly had a big bearing on how the game played out.


Both teams ended with 10 men and neither Jordan Harrison nor Jordan Henson could have any complaints.

On a booking, you cannot dive into a daft tackle on the edge of your own box as Harrison did. When faced with a fussy referee, Henson’s decision to shoot long after an offside flag when on a yellow card was equally as stupid.


City looked sluggish from the off begging the question as to whether recent team changes have stifled the flow.

While not directly to blame for this defeat, Nick Turton and Tom Fishwick are not necessarily there to be architects of fluency and Worcester’s ability to find pace from many angles seems to have suffered.


FA VASE SECOND ROUND: City 0 Desborough Town 2 (Turner 55, Boath 71)

City: Jezeph 6, Caines 5.5 (Weir, 65, 5.5), Smith 6, Forsyth 5.5, Stoddart 5.5, Fishwick 4.5 (Lockett, 73, 5), Birley 5, Withington 5.5, Harrison 3, Turton 4.5, Baldwin 5.5 (Bates, 65, 5.5). Unused subs: Evans, Gilder (g/k).

Desborough: Jones 6, Bradshaw 6, Stevens 6, Cooper 6.5, Adams 6.5, Boath 7, White 6, Arnold 6.5, Turner 6.5 (Clark, 77, 6), Henson 4, Parkes 7. Unused subs: Davies, Law, Maisiri, Brown (g/k).

Attendance: 365.