City dump holders out in stunning comeback

City stunned FA Trophy holders Bromley at Twerton Park this evening as they overturned a two-goal deficit before producing a perfect penalty shoot-out display to complete the turnaround and secure a place in the 4th Round of the competition. After a bright opening for the Romans – Dan Hayfield forcing a smart stop on seven minutes from Smith in the Bromley goal – the higher division side took control of the tie with a brace of quick-fire strikes. Webster’s close finish from a far post free-kick on eleven minutes opening the scoring before Whitely fired home a second goal ten minutes later. City enjoyed decent possession after this but rarely threatened the visitors goal. However, just before the hour mark a mix-up between Sowunmi and Webster allowed Scott Wilson to nip in and round Smith before rolling the ball home. With the tie back in the balance Bromley struggled to regain their control, largely looking to slow down the game at every opportunity, but as the game entered six minutes of additional time it looked like they had done just enough to hold on. Then another error at the back allowed Danny Greenslade to gain possession ahead of keeper Smith and he pulled the ball back for substitute Rex Mannings to beat two players on the goalline and send the game to penalties. Chris Lines, Wilson, Luke Spokes and Mannings all converted from the spot despite Smith trying to replicate Emi Martinez’s World Cup Final antics. Vennings, Dennis, Whitely and Sowunmi were equally successful for the Lilywhites but the fifth kick by Forster (first name Harry …) was blasted high into the Twerton sky. This left Greenslade with the chance to win the tie and he made no mistake, sending Smith the wrong way, to cap a remarkable victory and book a trip to Bracknell Town on Saturday 14 January.