Buildbase FA Trophy First Qualifying Round
Horsham 1 – 3 Romford
Still depleted Horsham were unable to claw back a deficit, despite numerical advantage, after a lack lustre first half display left them trailing at the break. The sides are in equivalent leagues with similar placings, suggesting a close encounter. But, Romford looked far better on the day, the pre match announcement about replay arrangements proving unfounded.
Early skirmishes culminated in a second Romford corner, Chinedu McKenzie scrambling the ball over to give the visitors the lead in the 13th minute. A long injury delay followed after which Horsham striker Terry Dodd was taken by ambulance to Worthing Hospital with a potentially serious knee problem. Tony Nwachukwu came on as substitute and embarked on a solo run but shot over the bar. Then, a failed Horsham clearance allowed McKenzie through to blaze Romford further ahead, swiftly followed by a screamer hitting the top right corner of the post with busy Horsham keeper Josh Pelling at full stretch. Horsham finally woke up with a series of attacks suddenly creating pressure before Romford were reduced to ten men following a deliberate trip, but despite corners at either end, Horsham were two nil down at half time.
Soon after the resumption Horsham substitute Scott Kirkwood’s free kick was pushed over the bar by Romford keeper Callum Chafer only for McKenzie to latch onto a miss-pass, run the length of the pitch and blast home, notching up an impressive, well-taken hat trick. With the game lost Dan Sackman got a consolation goal for Horsham, crashing in a Lee Carney free kick. Although Horsham then fought hard and had chances, Romford’s defence held secure to run out worthy winners, unhappy Horsham Manager Dom di Paola telling the District Post: “We just didn’t turn up today. Their centre forward McKenzie scored three good goals but we gave him so much room, making him look better than he should have been. It was a disappointing Horsham display and I can’t really say anything positive about it.”
Horsham return to league action with a home game against 11th placed Faversham tomorrow (Saturday), and then on Tuesday evening, November 8, they travel to Newhaven for a Sussex Senior Cup Round 2 tie.