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Gbla brace sees Kestrels progress in FA Vase – Reading Today Online

Woodley United FC - Sid Gbla Picture: Peter Toft

WOODLEY UNITED booked their place in the next round of the FA Vase thanks to a double from Sid Gbla which saw the visitors come back from a goal behind.

The Kestrels ensured that they made history in front of a three figure crowd as they ensured their name would be in the draw for the first round proper after they defeated their Hellenic Division One opponents, Newton Town.

Kicking towards the home clubhouse, United started strongly with Connor Suckling and Connor Richardson both lively on the wings.

They looked to get crosses into the Newent penalty area at the earliest opportunity while Sib Gbla and Rafa Brandao’s movement was causing the home central defenders problems.

The seventh minute saw Suckling pass to Gbla who under pressure from two defenders shot weakly at home keeper Ben Clay.

Richardson saw a corner scrambled clear four minutes later. It was not until the 18th minute that the hosts tested Alex Londors who blocked Ethan Vine’s shot for a corner.

Four minutes later, Town took the lead against the run of play. Having been awarded a free kick on their right hand side just inside the Woodley half, the kick to the edge of the visiting penalty area was cleared, only for good inter linking play by Newent which allowed Matt Klich to rifle a shot past Londors from 20 yards.

The lead was short lived when Gbla converted a penalty kick in the 25th minute following a foul on Brandao as he challenged a defender for a Suckling cross.

A minute later, Gbla had a shot cleared off the goal line but this was followed by the ball being passed to Richardson on the left whose cross was met by Gbla between two defenders to head past Vine and give United the lead.

Despite being in the ascendancy, United were unable to extend its lead with the closest efforts seeing Ben Lambourne’s goal bound shot deflected for a corner and Clay palming a Gbla shot to safety.

Newent kicked the second half off and showed their intent immediately winning a corner kick.

Six minutes into the half, Londors spectacularly parried a header away for a corner.

Ten minutes after the restart Gbla headed a Suckling cross onto the crossbar and the ball fell to Richardson who twice saw a defender block his shots before the third shot was palmed clear by Clay.

Londors was called into action in sixty sixth minute with another save and then capped a fine performance by pushing Tyler Weir’s spot kick away to his left for a corner kick in the eighty second minute.

There was still time for drama with substitute Agbor-Ya Ojong dismissed for a second yellow card with a minute of normal time remaining.

However, United withstood eight minutes of stoppage time to advance to the first round proper and a visit to Virginia Water on Saturday, October 21.

Woodley United: Londors, Adu Essah, Watkiss (Ojong), Carmichael, Nwokobia, Hok, Suckling (Albanese), Lambourn (Manneh), Gbla, Brandao, Richardson Subs not used: Mabukwa, Walker, DeBarros, Griffith

Goals: Gbla x2

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