The Peacocks are through to the 4th Qualifying Round of the Emirates FA Cup after a sensational 5-2 victory over St Albans City at the Viridor Stadium yesterday evening (10th October).

The resounding win over their National League South visitors was fully deserved following a superb all-round team performance. After an uneventful opening the game came alive after 21 minutes when Josh Nelmes headed Ryan Brett’s free kick back into the middle and Matt Buse was on hand to fire Town ahead.  A break by Buse down the left then found Dan Sullivan to cross for Brett to net the Peacocks’ second goal with a brilliant backheel finish five minutes later. Town continued to create chances and went 3-0 up six minutes before half time when a short corner set up Sullivan for a cross which Ollie Chamberlain was on the end of to steer past Dean Snedker.

The visitors were fortunate to only be three behind at the break after Brett’s volley from just outside the box crashed against the bar but the tie was put out their reach when Chamberlain scored a fourth goal after 53 minutes, Snedker only managing to palm his 12 yard shot into the net following Neal’s cross. Ralston Gabriel reduced the arrears on 61 minutes with a fine curling shot from the left before Tom Bender pulled another goal back for the Saints after 76 minutes with a left-footed strike following a corner. Craig Veal missed a great chance to stretch the lead but shot wide when through on goal, however Town were not to be denied their fifth of the evening which arrived a minute into stoppage time. Ben Adelsbury retrieved Brett’s free kick on the right and set up Buse for a cracking volley across Snedker into the far corner. The Peacocks can now look forward to the 4th Round Qualifying tie at Billericay Town on Saturday 20th October when £25,000 and a place in the First Round Proper will be up for grabs.

Reaction | interim manager Rob Dray commented: “What a night, one that won’t be forgotten about for a long while. We were superb in every facet of our play and as I said before, we have made some memories, not just for the players but for the directors, staff, fans and everybody involved. The players to a man were different class. However that is tempered with following up with positive results on Saturday and next Tuesday in the league which is ultimately our main aim.”

Ben Adelsbury remarked: “Last night’s game was certainly one to never forget. Everyone knew their own roles and executed them perfectly. We’ve been practicing our set piece routines in training and that paid off for us last night, scoring a couple of goals from them. The fans were fantastic, highlighted by the reception they gave us after the final whistle. We’ve spoken about it this morning and now we focus on the next two league games.”