Farsley Celtic comfortably defeated Knaresborough Town 4-1 to begin their defence of the West Riding County Cup in fine style. The three-division gap between the two sides was clear to see, however Knaresborough refused to give in and gave a good account of themselves, writes Thomas Ritchie.
Luke Parkin scored his first Farsley Celtic goal to give the hosts an early lead as Ryan Watson’s miscued effort fell to him in the area and he slotted home past Dan Atkinson.
Farsley continued to pressure the Knaresborough goal as Luke Parkin’s flick found James Walshaw who had his effort well saved by Atkinson.
Almost immediately after Farsley doubled their lead as a superb crossfield pass from Paul Walker found Adam Porritt who fired home into the top right corner from the edge of the box.
Knaresborough then came close to pulling a goal back twice, with Stephen Bromley picking out a wide-open Colin Heath in the area, however he was denied by a stunning Kyle Trennery save. Then, Farsley failed to clear the ball and it fell to Conor Donoghue ten yards out who shot wide when it seemed easier to score.
Luke Parkin could have had his second of the game after being played in by Paul Walker, however he was denied as his effort was beaten away by Dan Atkinson.
Atkinson was then called into action once more as after a quick free-kick Walshaw’s low shot on the turn would have crept into the bottom corner, if not for Atkinson’s save.
Knaresborough did manage to pull a goal back before half-time as a terrific first time cross from Conor Donoghue was headed home by Stephen Bromley, to give the visitors hope.
Early in the second half Colin Heath had another fantastic opportunity for the visitors after being played through by Harry Brown, however he fired his effort wide of the upright.
Farsley regained their two-goal advantage on the hour mark as James Walshaw played Paul Walker in down the left who delivered a cross for Adam Porritt to head home at the far post with Atkinson stranded.
Colin Heath once again came close for Knaresborough after receiving the ball from Ben Parkes, with Heath’s strike pushed around the post by Kyle Trennery.
With less than ten minutes remaining Farsley secured their progression through to the next round as Isaac Baldwin made a superb driving run before firing an excellent finish into the top corner to make it 4-1.
Farsley could have added another on the break in stoppage time, as Ben Atkinson’s through ball found Paul Walker who helped the ball onto Mark Bett, but after rounding the goalkeeper Bett’s effort failed to hit the target.
Farsley Celtic: Trennery, Harris, Baldwin, C. Atkinson, Pollard, Clayton (Bett 72), Porritt, Watson, Walshaw © (B. Atkinson 60), Parkin, Walker. Unused subs: Danny Ellis.
Knaresborough Town: Atkinson, S. Parkes (Youhill 67), Cook, Wilson, Anderson ©, Donnelly, Bromley, B. Parkes, Heath, Brown (Clayton 72), Donoghue.
MOTM: Paul Walker