Beckenham 1, King’s Lynn 2

King's Lynn progressed to the last 32 of the FA Vase with a hard-fought comeback win at Eden Park Avenue.

Kieran Doherty and Jack Defty, who also missed a penalty, struck after the break following Quentin Conteh's earlier opener. The Linnets will now travel to Northern League Norton and Stockton Ancients on January 25.

'First half, only three or four of the players reached the levels we know they can,' said joint boss Kevin Boon.

'Second half, we held our discipline kept our shape and we were fantastic. Beckenham could have been two up if they had taken there chances.

'Jamie Alsop made a great block, Pedro (Alex Street) a great save. We wasn't at the races first half. It was a long narrow pitch, wet conditions and we were lucky to come in at half time 1-0 down – although we created some chances.


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'Both myself and Setch (Gary Setchell) had to get into them at half time. We made a tactical change with Danny Buhlemann going on and for his contribution second half he was up there for man of the match.

'But, for me, one player who stood out miles was Luke Thurlbourne. He deserves headlines because they were rough and tumble but they also played some football and they were a good side.

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'The number ten won their league's golden boot last year and we couldn't handle him at times in the first half. King's Lynn progressed to the last 32 of the FA Vase with a hard-fought comeback win at Eden Park Avenue.

'We plugged on and on but when you miss a penalty it does cross your mind if it's going to be your day. Jack seemed to be in his wrong stride for the run up and it went ten yards over the bar. Even then, I still kept believing because we were playing all the football and we were a class act.'

Becks' assistant boss Michael Marks believes 26-goal hitman Defty was the difference between the two sides.

'He weren't bad was he? He's a big boy, a big unit, that's what I called him at half-time,' said Marks.

'He's a unit, he was a handful. He could play as well, the boy being fair to him, and they played to his strengths and they used their strengths to the best of their ability.

'Other than that, they had a few good players but I think he was probably the difference between the two sides and they played off him and used him well.

'The boys are gutted. They couldn't give us no more. We let them on to us, but I think they've given us so much during the first 60-70 minutes.

'You've got to be some sort of side to take an avalanche like we was taking for the last half-an-hour and not concede. It's a big dream for us, this cup, and now it's over but we didn't go out there and not turn up or get smashed.'

Beckenham's pitch survived the torrential overnight rain and a 9am pitch inspection for the much postponed tie to finally get under way at the Kent Leaguers pleasant Eden Street Ground.

Lynn won the toss and elected to defend the Railway End and kick up the slope in the first half. Lynn's management made just the one change from the side that had beaten Raunds Town 10-1 in the UCL - White returning instead of Doherty, who reverted to the bench, where Nelson Moreira replaced the ineligible Chris Bacon.

Beckenham looked lively from the start and Alex Street had to be alert to leave his line to block a through ball to the eager Conteh.

At the other end, a Pat Bexfield effort was off target. The Kentish side were causing Lynn's defence problems as they launched the ball forward at every opportunity with Conteh and right winger Danny McKone always looking dangerous.

It came as no real surprise when Beckenham took the lead after 14 minutes through a dreadful error from the Lynn defence. Conteh picked up a poor clearance to slide the ball into an unattended goal.

Minutes later Ross Watson was cautioned for tugging Conteh's shirt as he sought to break clear. Lynn responded with an attack which saw Jamie Thurlbourne almost find Robbie Harris but Gorman made a timely interception for a corner, from which Defty caused Nick Blue to make a fine save from his header.

Danny Lawson now went into the book for a foul on Jamie Thurlbourne. Beckenham returned to the attack and Watson came to Lynn's rescue, heading off the line, before Street made great a save from Gary Gorman.

Spriggs saw two efforts from the right go wide. Harris hit the post from close range, keeper Blue diving to save the rebound. Martin McNeil became the second Lynn player to go into referee Tweed's notebook after a foul on Beckenham's Gary Gorman

The second half saw Lynn come out in determined mood following a half time 'pep' talk from the management duo.

Danny Buhlemann had replaced the out of sorts McNeil. Lynn, now kicking down the slope began to impose themslves on the game as Beckenham strong defence looked to hold on to what they had.

Lynn thought they had the ideal opportunity to level the tie in the 51st minute when Harris was brought down by Chris Hill for clear cut penalty.

But Defty almost put his spot kick onto the railway line behind the goal. Watson and Defty then had headed chances saved by Blue, who was by now, far the busier of the two keepers.

Doherty replaced White on the hour mark to add steel to the midfield and with substitute Buhlemann playing well at the back, Lynn were looking much more solid as they pressed.

On 78 minutes they were eventually rewarded when Blue and Lawson made mess of a cross from Spriggs, the ball broke to Doherty who slotted home from close range.

Lynn now went in search of the winner and it came just six minutes later. A cross from Spriggs appeared to be handled by John Farley as he put the ball out for a corner. However, justice was done, as from the flag kick Defty rose to power home a header which gave Blue no chance.

Battling hard to the end, Beckenham threw everything into a last ditch effort to take the tie to extra time. Lynn's defence saw some desperate action as efforts were blocked and Street made two good stops from close range and Bexfield kicked two off the line.

Lynn nearly added a third when substitute Nelson Moreira, on for Harris gave Jamie Thurlbourne a chance, but Lawson kept Thurlbourne's strike out.

• Beckenham: Blue, D Gorman, Farley, Hill, Lawson, McNamara (Holder, 81), McKone, Curran, Conteh, G Gorman, Paul. Subs (used): Cook, Parmenter, Wise, Clews.

Goal: Conteh (14)

Booked: Lawson, Curran

• King's Lynn: Street, Bexfield, Alsop, L Thurlbourne, McNeil (Buhlemann 46), Watson, Spriggs, White (Doherty 63), Defty, Harris (Moreira, 87), J Thurlbourne. Sub (not used): Hails.

Goals: Doherty (77), Defty (84)

Booked: Watson, McNeil

• Attendance: 240

• Referee: Mr M Tweed (London)

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