Ward Joy As City Scrape Through

Last updated : 25 January 2009 By Kev Monks at Plainmoor

Westwood, Gunnarsson (Ward 44), Hall, Turner, Fox, Doyle, Beuzelin (Thornton 63), McKenzie, Mifsud, Eastwood, Morrison. SNU Dann, Marshall, Walker, Fraser, Wynter

Bevan, Nicolson, Woods, Mansell, Sills, Dsane (Carayol (87), Wroe, Hargreaves, Carlisle (Stevens 80), Hodges, Green (Benyon 80) SNU Poke, Robertson, Thompson, Adams.

HT TUFC 0-0 CCFC FT TUFC 0-1 CCFC Att 6,013
Ref K.Friend Booked Gunnarsson, Mansell
Man Of The Match Ben Turner took the votes with nominations for Ward and McKenzie. Scott Dann and the rest of the subs warmed up well.
Chris Coleman fielded the strongest side he had available.
With City's free for all policy meaning the 1450 tickets were snapped up, some City fans got tickets in the home areas thus wiping out a black market which had seen touts trying to sell tickets for up to £50 each.

A good number stayed for the weekend whilst others made the 390 mile return journey from Cov on the day.

Coventry City left it late to scrape through to the FA Cup Fifth Round with a 1-0 win at Torquay United.

At a packed Plainmoor, which saw both sets of fans mix well in the pubs and clubs around the ground before the game and in the ground as Coventry supporters had tickets in the home Popular Terrace as well as the Grandstand, side terrace and the terrace behind the goal where the majority of the support.

City boss Chris Coleman had warned that the same sort of poor performance that City had turned in against Blackpool could make this a very tough match.

The Sky Blues enjoyed the majority of the possession in the first half but the giant Scott Bevan in the Torquay goal was not overly troubled.

Eastwood and Mifsud both wasted good chances in the first five minutes as City,attacking into the sun, won a number of corners.

It was Mifsud,who had decided to stay on his £8K a week, who had City's first shot on target in the 12th minute with a righted footed volley that the Sky Blue shirted Bevan caught.

Ben Turner kept the defence reasonably tight and with the home forwards only giving Keiren Westwood easy catches and clearances, there was little to worry City in the first half.

In the 35th minute,a handball by Lee Mansell gave City a free kick which Danny Fox curled just over.

Then, two minutes before the interval, centre half Aron Gunnarsson had to be replaced after picking up a groin injury. He applauded the City fans as he left and after a minute or so, Elliott Ward came on to replace him.

Last week, City reacted to what their manager said at the break but today, it was Paul Buckle's side who looked the more like to score as the second half progressed.

With the sun having gone down and the temperature starting to drop, Matt Green started to cause problems for the Conference side.

He had a 49th minute header saved and then was involved three minutes later as Westwood pushed away a Kevin Nicholson corner and then got his fingers to deny Green before Fox cleared.

The City support was growing restless and started to urge the increasingly agitated Chris Coleman to make a change.

It came in the 63rd minute, when Kevin Thornton came on for Beuzelin.

City tried to bypass the midfield. Westwood sent all of his kicks long and even the back four which saw Marcus Hall at right back, opted for the long ball to try and play in Morrison and Eastwood who were being starved of any service and forced to look for scraps.

Two Matt Green free headers in the space of three minutes saw the City support demand that "Coleman Sort It Out."

Before the game, the Torquay fans had said that the reason they are not top of their league is due to their form in front of goal and ten minutes from time, this was proved as Nicky Wroe wasted a good chance.

Thoughts were turning to replays but in the 86th minute, City got a corner. Danny Fox swung in his best flag kick of the match. Former Plymouth loanee Elliott Ward got up to it and delivered a powerful header into the back of the net from eight yards with Bevan helpless.

Ward celebrated with the City supporters and his team mates in the corner and that was that.

It was a poor performance but City were in the fifth round for the second consecutive season.