Larkhall Athletic V Bath City – FA Cup 2nd Qualifying Round

Larkhall Athletic 2 - 3 Bath City
16 Sep 2023 - 15:00Securitas Stadium - Plain Ham, Larkhall

The Larks’ FA Cup run came to an end on Saturday in a memorable fashion. This was an historic tie between two clubs which are near neighbours but had never met in this competition before. It more than lived up to the excitement it had generated and the record crowd of 1000 people watched an absolute classic of a tie.

Although two divisions divide the Larks from the Romans, the home side silenced the large contingent of Bath City supporters from the start of the game. Showing impressive levels of desire and energy, the Larks simply tore at City, dominating possession and playing with great confidence. Home fans were given an early present when Jack Camm picked up the ball at the edge of the City area and blasted an unstoppable strike into the far corner of Ollie Wright’s goal. Only five minutes later we were delirious as Matt Bowman got on the end of a corner to make it 2-0 (see photo by Jeremy Richards above).

The scoreline could easily have been even more in the Larks’ favour before the break. Archie Ferris attempted an audacious lob over Wright from distance which bounced off the bar and over, and Max Williams came close with an effort that went just wide. So the Larks went in at half time with the advantage and Bath City had a job to do.

Clearly whatever Jerry Gill said to his players had an impact as City took the game to the home side in the second half. Arthur Nasta pulled off some sensational stops to keep them out but the turning point of the game came fairly late on. It took City almost 75 minutes to register a goal and it was the softest of penalties that got them back into it. Cody Cooke duplicated this effort with 10 minutes to go and it was all to play for. Arthur pulled off another extraordinary save from close range but City retained the ball and got a winner from Jordan Thomas.

Massive disappointment for the home side and supporters but everyone should be so proud of how they performed. Giving a National League side who are flying at present a football lesson is a sight we will never forget.