Manager Paul Carden said he was ‘delighted for everyone at the club’ after Nantwich Town overcame a 64-place deficit to knock out York City 3-2 in the FA Trophy 3rd Round, writes Liam Price.

The Dabbers made a blistering start. In just the second minute, the first free kick of the game was swung in by Steven Hewitt and flicked in by the head of Ahmed Ali.

The penalty shootout hero of the last three rounds had scored in open play just two minutes into this one.

York were shellshocked and weren’t helped by losing Kai Kennedy after just 11 minutes to injury.

A few minutes later, Hewitt missed a gilt-edged chance, sliding wide after York conceded possession by making a mess of trying to play out from the back.

Nantwich v York City goal

Normally the Dabbers would be thinking that they may regret a miss like that against National League opposition.

But on 22 minutes, the lead was doubled.

Captain Troy Bourne curled in a cross from the right and Paddy Kay bravely threw himself at it ahead of goalkeeper David Stockdale and headed in.

Six minutes later the Dabbers were in dreamland.

Another ball in was headed in by Connor Rankin for his first goal in a Nantwich shirt, and what a time to get it. After 28 minutes, they were 3-0 up against a side three divisions higher in the pyramid.

Rankin headed comfortably wide just before half time as York sought to salvage something out of what was turning into a disaster.

Goal for Nantwich Town v York City

The Minstermen brought on the first team players that they had rested, including Lenell John-Lewis.

He flicked a header wide then a blow for the Dabbers as Hewitt had to go off injured.

Quevin Castro fired well over the bar as another opportunity from a set-piece went begging for York.

Castro then fired over again in the box as the Dabbers started to look leggy after the immense effort they had put in.

Young loanee Tyler Hill then gave York a chance to get on the scoresheet, catching a York player on his blindside as he tried to clear.

John-Lewis stepped up and sent Danny Roberts the wrong way.

As the game ticked over into stoppage time, York got another.

Two subs were involved, Zanda Saziba drove the ball across and John-Lewis may have got the final touch.

Either way, York were right back in it.

Another twist came as Byron Harrison was shown a straight red card for an apparent elbow in the second minute of stoppage time, a decision described by Carden afterwards as ‘very harsh’.

A couple of nerve-jangling half chances went awry for York as Nantwich held on to record a momentous win and become the last 8th tier side standing in the FA Trophy.

Carden after the game said: “You’d go a long way to see a better first-half performance than that. It’s massive for the club, and hopefully we get another good draw and see where it takes us.”

(images courtesy of Jonathan White)

Nantwich celebrate against York City

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