Southam’s Star fades with tame Floodlit Cup exit

It has proved a miserable week for Saints who, following their home league defeat to Walsall Wood at the weekend, crashed out in the quarter-final of the Birmingham County FA Midweek Floodlit Cup on Tuesday night, when Continental Star ran out 3-1 winners.

Reflecting on the cup match, manager Luke Fogarty said: “We didn’t do ourselves justice and everyone is bitterly disappointed with the result.

“We only went down by a late goal when we played them in the league earlier in the season and fancied our chances at home.

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“We rested some players on Saturday to keep everyone fresh, as we really want to win a trophy for the lads to take out of their first season together.”

With the damp conditions making the pitch difficult for both sides, there was little to warm the crowd in the opening period, although Mark Anderson had a fine shot deflected for a corner in the 25th minute.

With three minutes of the half left, Star took the lead when, following a good move down the right, Daniel Holgate scored at the second attempt after Jim Stott had blocked his first effort.

Star scored a second straight after the interval courtesy of an own goal and Saints wasted a great chance to pull one back immediately when Quentin Townsend headed a Jack Taylor cross wide.

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A cross from Jackson was then almost turned into his own net by the right-back.

Any hope the hosts had of salvaging the tie died in the 76th minute when John Blunsom lost control of the ball and Holgate made it three for the visitors.

Substitute Richard Robinson got a consolation for Saints in added time.

With the cup in mind, Fogarty had rotated his squad for Saturday’s league match against Walsall Wood, leaving midfielder Mark Anderson and striker Tunde Ajibade on the bench and resting Ross Jackson.

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However, his reshaped side found themselves trailing 3-1 at the interval.

Fogarty made three substitutions at the beginning of the second half to try and retrieve the game but, although Saints halved the deficit through Jack Taylor in the 66th minute, a goal from Ryan Allmark two minutes from time saw the visitors run out 4-2 winners.

Saints are without a match tomorrow, but are at home again on Tuesday when they take on Castle Vale JKS (7.45pm).

Saints will play either Kenilworth Town or Stockingford, who meet on February 26, in the semi-final of the Coventry Telegraph Challenge Cup.