by Peter Scherer (Images: Captured Moments Photography Derby)
Mickleover march on to the next round of the FA Cup, after three second half goals sealed a 3-0 victory over neighbours Ilkeston Town.
Starting line-up: 1-James Pollard 2-Jake Bennett 3-Ryan Wilson 4-Will Atkinson 5-Fin Delap 6-Ethan Mann 7-Andy Dales 8-Ben Sault 9-Stuart Beavon 10-Marcus Barnes 11-Oli Greaves. Subs: George Nunn, Oliver Bosworth, Joe Bateman, Dan Bradley, Brandon Ferron, Andre Wright, Fin Ryder.
After an even opening five minutes Dales fired in Mickleover’s first shot from the edge of the box, just over the bar seven minutes in.
But Ilkeston were doing their best to push forward too, attempting to test Delap and Mann in the middle of the Sports defence. Walker and Waite combined for the visitors, but Hallam’s chip over the home defence found Waite offside.
But with Bennett and Wilson pressing forward down the wings and the solid looking midfield of Atkinson, Sault and Greaves, Mickleover were starting pile the pressure on.
Approaching the half hour mark Dales tried another long shot to test keeper Yates and only a minute later Greaves forced another save low down to the near post.
The Ilkeston defence had withstood the pressure and Pollard had to save a Hallam effort too at near post, following a 36th minute free kick.
The visitors tried their luck again three minutes later, having spotted Pollard off his line, but the shot was over the bar. There were a couple of late breaks from Sports as the first half drew to a close, but as the whistle went it remained 0-0.
Delap found himself yellow carded after 51 minutes, but the deadlock was finally broken just a minute later, with a well taken goal by Beavon 1-0.
Bradley was the first of the Mickleover subs to come on when he replaced Sault after 71 minutes, but with Ilkeston trying to seek an equaliser, there were appeals for a penalty for handball, waved away by the referee.
Barely a minute later there was a penalty, but it was Mickleover on the receiving end, with Greaves stepping up to beat Yates, 2-0 after 75 minutes.
Sports made a double substitution with nine minutes left, as Wright and Nunn came on for Beavon and Barnes. But with Delap up with the attack, he made it 3-0 after 86 minutes, to secure Mickleover’s name in the gat for the next round of the FA Cup.