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Match Report

 

Posted Wed 12 Nov 14 at 22:26 PM

While the cup may be full of cheer, league form is still of concern for Wrexham FC boss Kevin Wilkin.

Six games without a win in the bread and butter of the Conference have off-set any joy at a FA Cup second round match against either Stevenage or Maidstone.

And it was a familiar problem for the Dragons who took the lead in the first half through the in-form Andy Bishop, only to surrender it in the second period, something they have done time and again this season.

The Dragons made precisely zero changes from the side that trounced Woking 3-0 in the FA Cup, largely thanks to the best first half of football the club have played under Wilkin.

Three days later and Wrexham were as toothless in this first half as they were clinical on Sunday.

In fact you could see that the Cards were sent out by boss Garry Hill with a flea in their ear after that 45-minute capitulation, and just minutes in Jake Marriott tested Andy Coughlin with a long-range effort in the first real effort of note.

Hill’s men actually had the ball in the back of the net after seven minutes when Coughlin spilt a shot but as John Goddard slotted into in an empty net, the linesman’s flag came to Wrexham’s rescue.

Wrexham on the other hand were poor in the final third and Elliott Durrell came up with their first half-chance only for his near-post effort to be repelled by Jake Cole.

The evergreen Kevin Betsy fired well wide before waltzing through the Dragons backline only to see his shot blocked, before James Pearson had to clear smartly from another Woking attack.

But the very best chance came 24 minutes in when Scott Rendell played in Marriott to bear down on Coughlin’s goal and smash the bar with the keeper well beaten.

At the other end Wes York, brilliant on Sunday afternoon, was finding it hard to control the ball and when played in by Durrell his heavy control wasted the pass.

And still Woking came forward, with Marriott hitting well over when being played in by the impressive Goddard, before Rendell somehow didn’t connect with a wicked cross from the midfielder.

But there was still time for an even better chance as Goddard broke clear but his shot fell to Theo Lewis who somehow skewed it wide.

Wrexham looked shorn of ideas up front, so right on cue they took the lead just before half time when Mark Carrington’s long ball was expertly headed into the far corner by Andy Bishop for his fourth goal in four matches.

Too many times this season the Dragons have led at half time only to surrender that advantage, and this time it took only one second-half minute.

Chris Arthur’s looping cross seemed to evade the whole of the Wrexham backline, but not Rendell who timed his jumped superbly to nod in his 13th of the season.

In a lively opening to the second period, Neil Ashton’s cross was repelled before Bishop fired in a free-kick which struck the side-netting when many thought it was in.

Even more thought Joe Clarke’s curling effort was in, but Cole somehow saved it with an out-stretched hand, before Bishop hammered the rebound wide when he really should have scored.

But back came Woking as man with a name intertwined in Wrexham FC folklore – Joey Jones – put Betsy through but his shot was weak and easily held by Coughlin, before Arthur’s wicked cross evaded everyone minutes later.

On came Connor Jennings for the ineffective Durrell to add more graft up front, before the on-loan Pearson limped off to be replaced by Ross White.

The changes disrupted the Dragons with Woking having the next big chances, but the Card’s own replacement Guiseppe Sole just couldn’t knock home a cross before Coughlin had to be alert to deny first Rendell and then Betsy.

But there was an even better chance on 80 minutes when a great Adam Newton cross was somehow put wide by Sole on the stretch.

Continually Wrexham’s passing let them down, but when they did get free Jennings crossed for Bishop to bring the ball down, but Cole swatted it away from him just as he was about to pull the trigger.

But Woking finished stronger and both Theo Lewis and Sole twice went close as Wilkin’s men held on for a point.

Woking:
Jake Cole, Adam Newton, Mike Cestor, James Clarke, Scott Rendell, Kevin Betsy, Theo Lewis, Jack Marriott, Joey Jones, John Goddard, Chris Arthur.
Subs: Aaron Howe, Giuseppe Sole, John Nutter, Reece Beckles, Oliver Taylor.

Wrexham:Andy Coughlin, Mark Carrington, Neil Ashton, Manny Smith, Blaine Hudson, Joe Clarke, Elliott Durrell (Connor Jennings), Andy Bishop, Wes York, Johnny Hunt, James Pearson (Ross White).
Subs: Louis Moult, Dean Keates, Rob Evans.

Referee:Dean Treleaven (Hampshire) 
Attendance:1,418 
Away:158

Match report – Andy Gilpin / Daily Post

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