Emley 2 Evesham United 0 – FA Amateur Cup 1st Round

December 8, 1973

The 1973-74 season was the last season the FA Amateur Cup was played for.  It would be replaced the FA vase the following season as the FA abolished the distinction between professional and amateur clubs.  Emley had had a couple of poor years in the competition following their successes in 1969 and 70.  Now they came up against the leaders of the Midland Combination League, Evesham United.

Evesham travelled the 150 miles up from the fringes of the Cotswolds and according to the Examiner they were visibly shaken by the sight of the exposed Emley ground – probably not the first or the last to feel like that!  This may have had an unsettling effect on them, as Emley dictated the early stages of the game even with Emley’s famous wind blowing in Evesham’s favour.

Emley soon established their dominance in midfield.  Ian Kettlewell, in his 14th season with the club revelled in his role as Evesham concentrated on blotting out the threat of Stuart Greaves.  Kettlewell played the midfield general, spraying passes out to S.B Greaves on the left and his service to Travis and Sanders kept the Evesham ‘keeper busy.  In a 5-minute period, Travis sent 2 screamers just over the bar and placed a header on the roof of the net.

For all their pressure, Emley could not penetrate the Evesham defence in the first half.  However, it did not take long in the second half for the deadlock to be broken.  Stuart Greaves broke free from his shackles and after being fed by Sanders and S.B.Greaves, hit a rising shot into the net from the edge of the area.

Evesham had still to really threaten Emley, whose defence, with the ever-dependable Roger Wood prominent, was solid throughout. They continued to play the offside trap which frustrated Emley’s efforts to increase the lead.  Slowly they did get more chances, Delaney had a header comfortable saved by Fisher, and the same player fired into the side netting.

Emley finally put the game to bed on 75 minutes, when the excellent Kettlewell fastened onto a ball and hit a speculative shot from 25 yards.  Hooper, in the Evesham goal, should have stopped it but somehow he fumbled the ball into the net.

Evesham did make an effort to get back in the game, but overall they were thoroughly outplayed and Emley deservedly went through to round 2.  There they met Spennymoor, something of a bogey team, who easily triumphed 4-0, to finally end Emley’s history in the Amateur Cup.

Team: Fisher, Humphries, Steele, R Wood, Burke, S Greaves, Barnard, Kettlewell, Travis, Sanders, SB Greaves.  Sub: A Wood.

Headlines and some photographs courtesy of Huddersfield Examiner and the Huddersfield and District Chronicle

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