Barton Rovers progressed to the first qualifying round of the FA Cup on Saturday after two late strikes from debutant Connor Calcutt eased them through against Edgware Town.
The visitors found themselves on unfamiliar territory on Edgware’s new 3G pitch, but they soon settled down. Rovers’ breakthrough came in the 21st minute when a Dan Hutchins strike from 20 yards out eluded all and sailed past home keeper Sam Styles. The lead was short-lived though as Edgware equalised immediately when a spurious bounce caught out Rovers keeper Dom Roggero and allowed Mikkel James to slot home from close range.
Barton pushed on as they looked to get their noses back in front but the lower league side more than matched them as the score remained 1-1 at half time.
Rovers had the wind to assist them in the second period, but made good use of it as Rod Young put a good effort wide and Jimmy Hartley had an effort well saved by Styles.
Manager Jimmy Gray shuffled the pack just after the hour with the introduction of new boy Calcutt who made an immediate impact. A stern Wares defence made him wait to the 80th minute before finding a break through though as after some fine build up play Calcutt cut inside and fired home from a narrow angle. It didn’t take the debutant too long to put the game out of reach as in the 85 minute a fine half volley saw Edgware’s net bulge and finish the tie off. Barton will now travel to either Barking or Stanway Rovers, who drew 0-0 at the weekend, with their replay scheduled for last night.
Boss Gray said: “We have to be pleased with the result and that we live to fight another round in the FA Cup. “We had seven unavailable players, had to change the keeper in the warm up, there was a strong wind and we played on a 3G surface, so that could have been enough for a shock upset
. “But the Lads dug in and two great goals from our new signing were enough in the end. “We are now three unbeaten so it looks like the lads are getting my message. “But I won’t settle for anything less now as they are setting their own standards, standards I still want increased over the coming games as we have a tough Bank Holiday programme to look forward to.” Rovers host Uxbridge on Saturday afternoon and then visit Chalfont St Peter on Bank Holiday Monday.
Rovers line up
Subs: Nolan, Bishop, Calcutt