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Match Reports

REPORT: Stanley 1 Boreham Wood 0

Tommy Leigh's 97th minute penalty seals a clash with Premier League Leeds United

24 January 2023

Match Reports

REPORT: Stanley 1 Boreham Wood 0

Tommy Leigh's 97th minute penalty seals a clash with Premier League Leeds United

24 January 2023

Tommy Leigh scored the penalty to earn Accrington Stanley a bumper payday and a BBC appearance with a home tie against Premier League Leeds United in the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup on Saturday.

National League side Boreham Wood took the Reds all the way and the side’s couldn’t be separated afer 90 minutes.

However Shaun Whalley was fouled in the area on 97 minutes and Leigh despatched the spot kick to send Stanley into raptures and the chance to test themselves against Premier League opposition, with Leeds boss Jesse Marsch in the crowd at the Wham Stadium.

Michael Nottingham started his first game since April after a long-term foot injury.

Boreham Wood had an early chance on three minutes when Dennon Lewis crossed towards Tyrone Marsh who slid in but the Reds managed to clear their lines.

Stanley had a couple of goalmouth scrambles which they couldn’t capitalise on and had one effort cleared almost off the line on 16 minutes from Doug Tharme’s looping header.

There was an early enforced change for Stanley on 33 minutes when Rosaire Longelo came on for defender Nottingham.

Longelo and Shaun Whalley both played a couple of dangerous balls into the box but no one was able to get on the end of them before half-time.

Stanley forced the pace after the break. Whalley had the first shot after the re-start but his strike curled wide and, on 57 minutes, the frontman broke from his own half and charged into the area but Cameron Coxe made a timely tackle as Whalley charged down on goal.

On 59 minutes, Whalley was again the threat, he had a free header from around eight yards out but he could only find the hands of Nathan Ashmore with the best chance of the game so far.

A Tharme long throw found Ryan Astley at the far post on 67 minutes but he couldn’t guide the ball on target as Stanley enjoyed a good spell of pressure.

In the final ten minutes, Whalley’s strike was caught by Ashmore while Tommy Leigh couldn’t find the target with a volley.

Ashmore was the Wood hero on 87 minutes somehow keeping out an effort on the line from Sean McConville as it looked like Stanley had won it late on.

Then it was Toby Savin’s turn in added time as he denied George Broadbent, the keeper dashing out to block his shot after a quick breakaway from Wood.

Stanley started 30 minutes of extra time on the front foot with a goalmouth scramble but the flag  went up as Tharme tried to force the ball over the line.

Brentford loan striker Aaron Pressley came on, hoping to add to his two-goal tally.

However it was Leigh who struck. The Reds were awarded a penalty on 97 minutes when Whalley was judged to have had his legs taken by Zak Brunt and Leigh rifled home his 11th goal of the season.

Pressley’s deflected effort was over the bar in the second half of extra-time with former Red Erico Sousa clearing another strike off the line.

Boreham Wood kept pressing and came close to an equaliser with Lee Ndlovu not far off with a fierce strike in the 110th minute and then Savin keeping out Femi Ilesanmi’s dangerous cross.

Stanley held on for what promises to be a memorable day on Saturday.


Stanley: Savin, Astley, Rodgers, Nottingham (Longelo), Tharme, McConville, Hamilton (Pressley), Coyle, Martin, Whalley (Woods), Leigh

Subs: Jensen, Nolan, Perritt, Adekoya, Pickles, Fernandes

Yellow: Tharme

Attendance: 1940 (175 from Boreham Wood)

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