The Peacocks are through to the 1st Round Proper of the Buildbase FA Trophy after a terrific 3-2 victory over Concord Rangers at the Viridor Stadium yesterday afternoon (25th November).

A breathtaking tie seesawed between the two teams but ultimately it proved a tale of two keepers to determine who progressed to the next round on 16th December. Facing a side from two leagues higher, Town made a wonderful start with the opening goal after just five minutes. Early pressure saw Pierce Mitchell’s shot not held by Concord keeper Louis Wells and when Ross Staley laid the ball back across, Matt Wright was there to steer into an open goal. Concord hit back, with Femi Akinwande driving a shot against the post and then being brought down by Ben Palmer for a penalty. Lloyd Irish pulled off a great save though to deny Steve Cawley from the spot. Cawley made amends when he pulled the visitors level on 29 minutes, converting Ben Greenhalgh’s cross from the left at the back post. The woodwork then denied Town after Wright saw his header cannon off the post following a Dan Sullivan cross minutes before the break.

The pacy Concord side began to get on top after the break and went ahead on 62 minutes with a cracking Harry Lee strike from 25 yards. However Town responded and equalised after 74 minutes. Wells made a brilliant save to keep out Ollie Chamberlain’s header but when the ensuing corner wasn’t properly cleared Ross Staley collected to rifle home a fine strike from the edge of the box. Town then grabbed the winning goal two minutes later when Wells let a Matt Buse shot escape from his grasp to roll over the line to send the home crowd delirious. Irish made a couple more excellent saves to keep Concord at bay and leave the Peacocks looking forward to Monday’s draw for the next round.

Reaction | Manager Leigh Robinson commented: “Another brilliant cup day at the Viridor and a fantastic achievement to reach the first round of the FA Trophy after last year’s FA Cup success. So proud of the players and really happy for the people who run the club as together we have achieved so much over the last 18 months, creating wonderful memories and really making people sit up and take notice of Taunton Town. It was a hell of a cup tie and a great spectacle for the crowd. The best thing that happened to us was their second goal as it kicked us into life and it became a bit ‘all or nothing’. A great example today of the spirit and character that we have in the dressing room. Of course we had a bit of luck with the winning goal but that’s cup football and fortune favours the brave as they say. Let’s hope for a good draw in the next round and enjoy another good occasion.”

Match winner Matt Buse remarked: “We started the game really well, pressing with good intensity and playing some nice football when we created a couple of good chances and deservedly took the lead. However when they went ahead in the second half we had to dig in and we showed great character to come back and get the win. Lloyd was outstanding but every player put in a great shift, which we knew would be required against a good side and sometimes you earn a bit of luck which came with the last goal. As players we are delighted for everyone involved, it brings prize money in and rewards the club for their great support. Once again we would like to thank the supporters who were fantastic. We will now look forward to the draw.”