An Elliot Lee screamer, alongside Mullin's second half hat-trick, saw Wrexham secure their place in tonight's Third Round draw of the FA Cup.
Our highest FA Cup attendance since 1999 of 9,118, bared witness to a flurry of late goals, seeing the Red Dragons overcome Farnborough in the Second Round of the FA Cup.
The first half of the fixture meandered along as neither side created any substantial chances, aside from a Jordan Davies double effort, forcing a double save from Jack Turner.
Unfortunately, ‘the Coedy Assassin’ had to come off in first half stoppage time due to a knee injury caused in an attempt to win the ball. Returning to the starting eleven, this left a sad tinge on the day.
The substitution of James Jones onto the pitch marked the overwhelming strength of Phil Parkinson’s bench. The ability to call upon regular first team starters in the latter stages of a cup tie would prove its worth in this affair.
Four minutes into the start of the second half would see Mullin grab his first goal of the afternoon. Doggid determination enabled him to hound for the ball on a corner, ignoring the shirt pulls from Oliver Pendlebury, to lunge and poke the ball into the net. A scrappy goal, but the epitome of being a ‘poacher.’ This would be his 50th goal for the club and counting...
Just after the hour mark, Boro would claim their arguably deserved goal. Pendlebury’s free-kick beat Mark Howard in goal, who would have been disappointed not to parry the ball away. Although anticipating the trajectory and placement of the set-piece, he wasn’t able to maintain his clean-sheet.
Howard would prove crucial in the moments succeeding this goal, making world class saves at point-blank range to which Farnborough’s manager Spencer Day was mesmerised by.
Selim Saied’s strike from pointblank saw Howard’s fingertips edge the ball over the far top corner with 72 minutes gone and later he clawed out Kevin Lokko’s header in stoppage time. It’s safe to say that our goalkeeper made amends for his earlier mistake.
Wrexham were not banging on the door when the eventual restoration of the lead came, via a sumptuous Lee strike in the 78th minute. Allowing a man of his quality to take a touch on the edge of the box and load up a strike for the top corner was Boro’s downfall. The ability of Lee to whip his shot with the amount of speed it possessed was unfathomable and a clear example of why the Wrexham fans adore him so much.
This goal seemed to spark new life into Wrexham, as Farnborough tried everything to salvage a goal. Callum McFadzean's slotted pass from the left-wing couldn’t not be gobbled up by Mullin, just a few minutes after the Lee goal.
His hat-trick would be sealed in the 88th minute though, when he acrobatically flung himself at the ball to sweep it home into the visitors’ net. McFadzean would pick up another assist here, as he chipped the ball back into the box from the edge, all whilst Mullin readjusted himself to swing the ball into the net and claim the match ball.
The performances of McFadzean of late have been outstanding and his ability to create chances in the goalmouth is an attribute Mullin spoke kindly of in his post match thoughts.
Farnborough did not deserve to lose the game 4-1. The difference from the game was the vast quality that Wrexham possessed on the pitch and the Red Dragons’ ability to create moments of magic right at the death. The dying embers of games seem to bring out the best in Wrexham; an invaluable quality to have in the FA Cup.
We now await the Third Round draw, where Mullin and Parkinson have expressed their interest in becoming ‘giant killers’ in line with club tradition.