FC United are out of the FA Trophy after losing 3-1 at Hereford on Saturday afternoon in a classic game of two halves.
The Reds had been 1-0 up at the break through Jack Banister but were blown away by the hosts in the second half.
Manager Neil Reynolds had to make a couple of changes with Lewis Thompson recalled by Blackburn and Michael Donohue injured, Ryan White and Banister stepping in to replace them.
The game started in exactly the same way as the league game a fortnight ago with the home side making the early running. George Lloyd put in a dangerous cross which no one could connect with and Mike Symons, who would turn out to be a thorn in the FC side, poking the ball wide of the goal. There was also a scare when Lloyd Allinson went down injured for a few minutes but happily he was able to continue.
As in the last game, FC took the lead. Elliot Simoes played the ball into Kurt Willoughby who scuffed his shot, the ball fell to Tom Peers who did the same, but Banister was on hand to pick up the loose ball and flick it over Matt Yates to finish with aplomb.
From that point, The Bulls had most of the ball but in truth Allinson wasn’t really troubled. O’Halloran, who was having a fine game, took a poor touch and let in Lloyd, his pass to Symons was too heavy and the ball rolled through to Allinson.
At the other end, Yates ensured Hereford kept in the game with a fantastic double save form firstly Willoughby and then Peers.
Just before half time, Allinson plucked a Mike McGrath header out of the air and in first half injury time Banister almost doubled his account but his curling shot was smothered around the post by Yates.
The home side made a change at half time and as so often happens, FC United seemed to be left in the dressing room with a slow start to the half. On 47 minutes a corner from the right was powerfully headed home by Jordan Cullinane-Liburd.
In another coincidence with two weeks ago, a team scored a second goal within a minute. That time it was FC United to kill the game, this time the tables were totally turned. The ball was played into the box, Liburd headed down and sub Tommy O’Sullivan smashed home the ball into the top corner.
From that point, it was all Hereford, Tom Owen-Evans seeing a shot saved by Allinson and O’Sullivan finishing poorly when he was well placed.
At the other end, Banister saw a long shot saved well by Yates but in truth this was the only real chance FC had in the second half.
Hereford skipper Harvey Smith, who scored at the wrong end two weeks ago, almost made amends but Allinson saved his shot well. On 68 minutes, Owen-Evans was played in Allinson again blocking the shot. Three minutes later, Allinson was in play again, saving well from Lloyd.
On 75 minutes, the FC United woodwork was rocked when a powerful Danny Greenslade smacked the inside of the post and rolled out for a goal kick.
It was no surprise that the lead was extended just a minute later when Symons finished off a flowing Hereford move with a cool sidefoot finish.
FC United could point to the three good saves in the first half by the home keeper as being pivotal but in truth the second half showing wasn’t good enough and the winless run in the FA Trophy going back to 2015 continues.
Report by Steven Wood
Website man of the match: in a contrast to the last game, not too many contenders this week but Lloyd Allinson beats his defensive pals O’Halloran and Lynch thanks to the number of good saves made in the second half.