Six-shooters Morpeth cruise through in FA Cup
Morpeth Town cruised into the Emirates FA Cup Second Qualifying Round with a 6-1 thrashing of fellow NPL Premier Division side Hyde United.
Sean Taylor was the talk of Craik Park with a 33-minute hat-trick, before Liam Hardy reduced the deficit on 49 minutes. Jack Foalle scored in the 53rd and 89th minutes, with Andrew Johnson scoring off the bench on 74 minutes to seal an emphatic win.
In what was Jim Gannon’s first match in charge of the Tigers, he got a glimpse of the size of the job in front of him as his side struggled to get a foothold in the game from the off before Taylor struck in the 14th minute.
Far from stirring into life, Hyde retreated and fell further behind in the 24th minute.
His hat-trick would be completed just nine minutes later when he slotted home in composed fashion to mark his first start of the season in style.
Town were in total control by this point but, despite a decent start to the second half, they found themselves on the back foot a little as Hardy guided a near post header into the net to reduce the arrears on 49 minutes.
His seventh goal of the campaign would be a mere consolation as the Highwaymen immediately responded through Foalle, the forward, fresh off the bench, stooping to head home his first of the season from close range following Taylor’s ball in from the right.
Johnson then stepped off the bench to cap a fine counter-attack and score the fifth for the home side. Michael Turner played a long ball forward to the chest of Johnson, who turned and sprayed the ball out to the right and the advancing Connor Oliver.
The midfielder, outstanding throughout, then sized up a delivery before picking the on-rushing Johnson out for a free header.
There was still time for Foalle to slot in from close range, from Johnson’s cut-back, as Morpeth sealed a fantastic FA Cup win.
Morpeth are next in action when travelling to Gainsborough Trinity on Tuesday night for an NPL Premier Division game. The Highwaymen are next at home on Saturday when welcoming Witton Albion.