Buxton FC knockced out of FA Trophy by late Bradford Park Avenue goals

Buxton FC v Blythe Spartans (green), Alastair Taylor
Buxton FC v Blythe Spartans (green), Alastair Taylor

Buxton were beaten 2-1 in the FA Trophy after two late goals from Bradford Park Avenue.

Buxton came within 15 minutes of making Trophy progress but were sunk by two goals in four minutes from a resilient, in-form Avenue side.

The Bucks had led from the 48th minute but that goal, arguably coming too soon, provoked a determined, consistent response by the visitors who eventually gained their reward and then struck again quickly to earn a home tie versus Lincoln City.

This was a Buxton display much improved on last Saturday, undoubtedly made possible by the return of the experienced duo of Greg Young and Ricky Ravenhill.

As in the previously abandoned meeting, there was little to choose between the teams while the game was goal-less, even though 22 league placings separate the clubs.

Indeed it was the Bucks who created the two clearest scoring chances of an even first half, but when both went unconverted there were those among the Silverlands faithful who wondered whether retribution lay in store.

Yet at the start of the second half Alastair Taylor scored from a less promising situation.

Reminiscent of Joe McGee’s goal on Saturday, he powered past his marker at the right by-line and his firm, low shot was deflected into goal by a defender.

Avenue’s response was immediate with Chilaka all but netting from former Silverlander Craig King’s left-flank ground cross.

Then an unwise Niall Doran challenge gave the visitors a free-kick at the edge of the penalty area, but the attempt at goal ballooned high over the bar.

Buxton defended stoutly but there was another scare when King, who regularly had the beating of the out-of-sorts Glenn Belezika, fired in a high cross which ‘keeper Phil Barnes touched onto the bar and thence out of play.

The Bucks still had their moments in attack with a dangerous Ash Burbeary free-kick and follow-up cross but Bradford threatened again only for Warren Burrell to clear with an overhead kick.

Nonetheless the equaliser came in the 80th minute. Doran’s underhit clearance on Buxton’s left was instantly pumped back into the centre by Scott and Richard Marshall picked his spot with a decisive header.

Before Buxton could adapt to the challenge of regaining their lead, Bradford fashioned a winner.

A quick break out of defence fed Chilaka in space and he netted low and confidently.

Ravenhill’s dismissal for a second-yellow handball in the closing minutes merely confirmed the late change in fortunes.