Views from both camps as Handsworth edge Ammers in League Cup bizzare replay

Forced to replay their Toolstation NCEL Second Round League Cup Tie following the “Is it extra time or isn’t it” confusion in that 2-2 draw in early September, Yorkshire Amateur exited the competition after a 2-1 defeat to Handsworth Parramore in the all Premier Division at the Southerns Stadium last night having won that “first ” game on penalties-but Ammers Joint Manager Neil Sibson wasn’t shedding too many tears despite the defeat, writes Colin Muncie.

A crowd of 42 watched Ash Flynn give the much-changed home side a 28th-minute lead but Bradley Nicholson levelled after 37 minutes to send the sides in level at the break. Nicholson scored just after the hour to settle the tie.

Neil hinted that it might have been a game neither side really needed. He told TBG “We made wholesale changes tonight by resting players and going with most of our Under-21 lads -as did our visitors. We endeavour to win every game we participate in, but tonight we were not at the races in the first half with Parras having most of the play. I had to leave at half time so I didn’t see the second half; I’m told it was an improvement from the first half- but not good enough to win the game”.

Neil had words of sympathy for tonight’s opponents “We won’t lose any sleep- well, I won’t anyway” he admitted, before explaining “The only people who may well lose sleep will be the lads from Parramore who obviously had to trek all the way back up to Leeds for the second time in this Cup, even though they were willing to forfeit the tie after the referee’s blunder in the previous game!! “

Neil’s attention now turns so the weekend when his side protect their impressive leadership of the Division when Bottesford visit the Southerns Stadium” We have a busy run of games coming up” he warned “so we will regroup and be ready for Saturday. Well done to Handsworth and I hope they win this cup now”

“Please don’t make us play it again though!”

Handsworth’s Interim Joint Manager Steve Istead was, of course, happier with his side’s performance, but, like Neil, has his eyes on the weekend. “A really good performance tonight” he told TBG “We used the game to rotate the squad and get lad’s minutes just as I imagine they did. I think we made 8 changes from Saturday. We stuck to the game plan really well and didn’t let them play out from the back. When we did press, we pressed in threes and fours -and won a lot of possession back”

Handsworth head next to the DSM Memorial Ground. “We are going into a tough game away to Penistone on Saturday which will be a totally different challenge” Steve warned.

“The lads have given us plenty to think about!”

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