Worcester News

FA VASE: Worcester Raiders lose to Coventry Sphinx on penalties


FA VASE: Worcester Raiders knocked out by Coventry Sphinx

By Marcello Cossali-Francis

Last updated:

    FA VASE: Full-time - Coventry Sphinx 1 (3) Worcester Raiders (1)
  • Worcester Raiders first taste of the FA Vase ended in defeat as they fell to MFL Premier Division outfit Coventry Sphinx on penalties in the preliminary round.
  • Raiders played most of the second half with 10 men following Dan Flowers red card but could have won the game with numerous chances going begging.
  • Kyle Belmonte's first half strike was eventually cancelled out by Callum Woodward with just seven minutes of normal time remaining.
  • Raiders outplayed Sphinx for the majority of the game and started well when substitute Belmonte struck on the 20th minute with a brilliant strike from 25 yards out.
  • The lower ranked side continued to frustrate the hosts and looked dangerous on the counter.
  • Seven minutes into the second-half a scuffle involving most of the players played out and referee took his time to make his decision before brandishing a red card to Flowers.
  • Raiders weren't phased by this and had three golden chances to extend their lead.
  • Sphinx 'keeper Tom Cross twice made incredible saves from both Jordan Stoddart and Kyonn Evans to keep it at 0-1.
  • Then with just a few minutes of normal time remaining, Raiders were punished when Woodward's cross into the box drifted over Matt Gwynne in the Raiders goal.
  • Both sides pressed for a winner and Sphinx thought they had got it in added time but the linesman's flag denied them and penalties would decide the outcome.
  • Belmonte, Evans and Baldwin all saw their penalties saved as the hosts held their nerve to secure their place in the next round.
  • Raiders performed well and were the better side for large parts and showed they can compete at a higher level.
  • Their league campaign kicks off next weekend at Bridgnorth as they look to try and push for promotion.