Needham Market produce huge FA Trophy shock by beating Yeovil

Needham Market celebrate their historic FA Trophy win at Yeovil Town

Needham Market celebrate their historic FA Trophy win at Yeovil Town - Credit: Ben Pooley

Needham Market secured the biggest win in club history in dramatic fashion yesterday, beating Yeovil Town 8-7 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in their FA Trophy Fourth Round clash at Huish Park.

The Marketmen, cheered on by 58 hardy souls who made the long trip from Suffolk for the game, reached the last 16 of the Trophy by upsetting a team who play in the National League - two tiers above them - and once competed in the Championship.

Needham Market players celebrate their FA Trophy shock win at Yeovil

Needham Market players celebrate their FA Trophy shock win at Yeovil - Credit: Ben Pooley

The Glovers were humbled as Kevin Horlock’s Marketmen produced a stunning performance that had to be seen to be believed, and will send shockwaves through non-league football.

After three straight defeats, including their narrow FA Cup loss against League Championship side Bournemouth a week ago, Yeovil manager Darren Saril announced his strongest line up for the visit of a Suffolk side that had knocked out Wealdstone, also from the National League, at Bloomfields in the previous round.

The match kicked off in splendid surroundings and on a superb pitch in front of a crowd of 1,642, with the visitors on the front foot.

Needham Market fans celebrate their FA Trophy win at Yeovil with hero Marcus Garnham

Needham Market fans celebrate their FA Trophy win at Yeovil with hero Marcus Garnham - Credit: Ben Pooley

Noah Collard released a fine ball to Ben Fowkes, whose ensuing effort was deflected for a corner. At the other end, Jake Dye produced a great tackle to deny Jordon Barnett as the game settled.

The home side picked up the pace with their physical advantage, and started to impose themselves, but the visitors repelled their advances until the 30th minute, when the deadlock was broken as Adi Yussuf’s cross was swept home by Morgan Williams.

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Resilience broken, it was time for calm and a positive response from the Suffolk side. The Marketmen reacted with successive corners and, from Collard's free kick on the stroke of half-time, Ben Fowkes struck an unstoppable volley into the Yeovil net - sending a corner of the ground into raptures.

Ben Fowkes celebrates after scoring for Needham Market at Yeovil

Ben Fowkes celebrates after scoring for Needham Market at Yeovil - Credit: Ben Pooley

The second half saw resilience beyond the call of duty as the home side had the greater share of play, but the defending was largely heroic with particularly Kieran and Dan Morphew, outstanding and a supporting cast putting their bodies on the line to help protect Marcus Garnham’s goal.

At the other end Needham showed fine technical ability, and often working on the break, they saw Callum Page lift his shot on the run over, and the hard working Luke Ingram, sometimes alone up front, heading inches over.

Needham Market players relish getting back on level terms at Yeovil Town in the FA Trophy

Needham Market players relish getting back on level terms at Yeovil Town in the FA Trophy - Credit: Ben Pooley

Needham almost scored in added time when Grant Smith made a fantastic save to deny Ingram, and the tie went to penalties.

The penalty shoot-out proved to be an epic in itself. The drama that unfolded was unreal. 20 quality penalties, all on target, that either beat the keepers or saved by them.

Needham Market keeper Marcus Garnham scored a penalty - and then saved the next one to win the game

Needham Market keeper Marcus Garnham scored a penalty - and then saved the next one to win the game - Credit: Ben Pooley

It was finally settled as man of the hour Garnham scored the 19th spot kick - and then saved the next and final kick to win the match 8-7 on penalties.

Heroes all for Needham. What a game!

Needham Market fans at Yeovil Town

Needham Market fans at Yeovil Town - Credit: Ben Pooley