Robins exit the League Cup after narrow defeat

The Ely City squad for the 2015/16 season.

The Ely City squad for the 2015/16 season. - Credit: Archant

Ely City fell at the first hurdle and exited the League Challenge Cup in the opening round after a 2-1 defeat away at Fakenham Town on Wednesday night.

Marcus Brook made his debut for the Robins and Nathan Littlefair returned to the starting line-up having been out since pre-season through injury.

Fakenham, who sit bottom of the Thurlow Nunn First Division, struggled to get a foot-hold in the first half as Ely controlled the game and created a number of good chances to take the lead.

Craig Neal, Ash Walter, James Seymour and Jack Saunders all failed to beat the keeper when in good positions, and Ely received a killer blow for failing to turn chances into goals when Fakenham’s Ben Boyce headed his side in front on the stroke of half time.

The second half started with Ely pushing for an equaliser, with Alex Theobald having a chance from a Jamie Alsop corner cleared off the line. However, Fakenham went up the other end and extended their lead when Boyce had plenty of time in the box to pick his spot and give Brook in goal no chance for his second of the game.

Ely were slightly subdued following the second Fakenham goal and the game looked out of reach until and excellent goal from Craig Neal just after the hour.

Josh Sewell stepped out from centre back to break up the play and hook the ball over the top of the Fakenham defence for Craig Neal to blast the ball into the bottom corner.

Most Read

Neal’s goal gave Ely a much-needed lift but the equalising goal could not be found; Nathan Littlefair had an effort saved by the Fakenham keeper and Jack Saunders had a shot well blocked. Fakenham looked dangerous on the break as Ely searched for an equaliser late on but it proved elusive and the Robins exited the competition.

City’s attentions will now turn back to the league on Saturday when they entertain Needham Market Reserves at the Unwin Ground.