Penalty heartache for Villa as they lose in cruellest way

Euxton Villa forward  Dan Birkby
Euxton Villa forward Dan Birkby
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Euxton Villa suffered cup heartache as they lost their Richardson Cup second round tie 3-2 on penalties against Fleetwood Hesketh.

The sides battled it out over a gruelling 90 minutes with two goals coming in the opening eight minutes.

David Brooks gave Fleetwood the lead after five minutes before Danial Hogg equalised just three minutes later.

Both sides had chances to win it normal time but Hogg became the Euxton villain as he was sent off with just over 20 minutes left after receiving his second yellow card.

Mark Swift and Ryan Thompson gave Villa a 2-1 lead in the shootout but key misses from Rick Wilson, Sam Bolton and Dan Birkby saw Mark McDonnell’s side lose 3-2.

Villa sent several corners into the box but against the run of play, they fell behind.

Jack McKluskie latched on to a Peter Hennerty pass, he played through Brooks and the prolific striker slotted past goalkeeper Struan Robertson.

The goal didn’t deter Euxton and they hit back almost immediately when a long ball was sent forward and Hogg ran on to the ball before finishing well past Sam Wilkinson.

Euxton were buoyed by their goal and they increased the pressure, with Hogg spurning another chance.

Fleetwood sent several shots wide, before Robertson made an excellent save tipping wide a Craig Massam shot.

The hosts rarely threatened Robertson then Hogg had a golden chance but from three yards he dragged wide Ian Billington’s pull back.

With full-time close, Dan Morris rose above everybody in the box but his header glanced the outside of the post.

Swift and Thompson gave Villa the upper hand in the shootout as Hennerty converted and Brooks was denied by Robertson.

Mark Baddeley then hit the post before it all went downhill for Villa as Rick Wilson shot wide before JP McMullen equalised.

Sam Bolton saw his spot-kick saved before Jack Craig gave Fleetwood the lead and then Dan Birkby missed the all important one.