PETER MORRISON TROPHY QUARTER-FINALS
MACCABI MANCHESTER 2nd 1 MACCABI LONDON LIONS BLUE 0
A second-half header from Gabe Silva was enough to send Manchester into the last four of the Jewish FA Cup, where they join holders North London Raiders A. Haroldeans, Redbridge Jewish Care A, Manchester 1st and Lions White have yet to play their quarter-final tie.
The decisive moment of a well-contested tie came on 75 minutes saw super-sub Silva leap highest to plant a towering header into the net following a long-throw from Adam Herman.
Jubilant Manchester joint-manager Jonny Rose told JC Sport: "It was a typical Peter Morrison Trophy tie, very tight and it always had 1-0 written all over it. Lions are a big, strong and physical team who surprised us. So the message to the boys was stay in the game and our superior fitness was an important factor. The rotation of the squad during the second half definitely won us the game.”
Asked who he'd like in the semi-final draw, Rose responded: "We’ve already exceeded expectations in reaching the last four. We're not expected to win so are quite relaxed about who we get.”
Lions boss Sam Marchant told JC Sport: "It was a typical cup affair, something you’d associate more with the FA cup in the 1980’s, or classic Sunday League. We were certainly up for the battle and knew what to expect, however we found it difficult to play our football."
Marchant believes home advantage was a big factor in Manchester's victory, and he voiced concerns about the playing surface that greeted the visitors at Old Bury Farm: "As you know, we like to get the ball down, pass it and play our ‘football’. I am not one to usually make excuses, but it was close to impossible to play how we like on the pitch we were on. With four or five large holes filled with sand, other terrible areas, and a generally ‘heavy’ pitch, all passes received their bobbles and strange bounces which makes it hard to play.
"We knew the game would be evened-out and that it was likely a set-piece would decide the game 1-0. And that is exactly what happened when we conceded to a long-throw. It’s always a shame to lose a game in such a manner, and the game was particularly scrappy, but this is football and sometimes you just have to accept the situation and move on.
"At Rowley Lane, we feel the story would have been extremely different. I was told after the game that Manchester specifically opted to not play on their artificial grass pitch as they knew we were used to playing on high-quality grass pitches or our own artificial grass pitch. That decision, whether fair or not, I feel certainly had an impact on the game.
"We are disappointed because we felt with the teams left in the competition, we had a serious chance of going further, but at the end of the day, we are out the cup and we now just focus on our last game of the season. I wish Manchester luck for their future matches."