Hawks' Cup cruise does not satisfy hungry boss
Lee Bradbury enjoyed a comfortable afternoon as the Hawks cruised to a 5-1 win over Highworth Town in the second qualifying round of the FA Cup at Westleigh Park.
Striker Matt Paterson grabbed a hat-trick as the home side easily saw off their Hellenic League visitors.
The Hawks made their quality count from the start and virtually decided the tie with two goals inside the opening 12 minutes.
Highworth could easily have crumbled at that stage but to their credit they kept battling away.
It wasn’t until the final half-hour, when they tired that the Hawks bagged another three goals.
The hosts had spent a lot of that time going through the motions knowing they already had the tie won.
And Bradbury admitted it irritated him a little.
‘It was emphatic in the end but being hyper-critical at 2-0 we were cruising a little bit,’ said the boss.
‘I don’t want us to be a team that does that.
‘The two early goals set it up for us but then we didn’t play with the intensity I wanted.
‘I want us to be going for the jugular and scoring as many goals as we can.
‘Overall it was a good team performance but for spells we came off it a bit.
‘In the last 20 minutes our fitness showed and we should have scored a lot more goals.
‘We are in a good situation at the moment because I was able to change things a little and we still scored five goals. Matt Paterson was great and scored an excellent hat-trick.’
The Hawks were gifted their opener after three minutes following dreadful hesitation in the Highworth defence.
With both the keeper and centre-back leaving Ryan Young’s long clearance, Paterson nipped in to lob the ball into the unguarded net.
Nine minutes later Ryan Woodford easily headed in a Ben Swallow cross.
The Hawks then slipped into cruise mode, although Swallow continued to cause Highworth a headache.
‘I thought Ben gave them problems all game,’ added Bradbury.
‘They had to take their full-back off because he was cutting him up at will.
‘He deserved to score because he got himself into some very good positions.
‘Alongside Matt, he was our man of the match.’
Highworth had their best spell at the start of the second half.
The Hawks were eventually woken from their slumbers at the hour mark.
James Hayter scored a penalty after being clumsily felled in the area.
Highworth substitute Ashley Edenborough replied in kind soon afterwards – following a Harry Medway trip.
But Paterson knocked the final nails into the visitors’ coffin with two goals in as many minutes at the death.
Hawks: Young, Strugnell (Medway), Williams, Stock, Woodford, Harris, Swallow, Lewis, Hayter (Rutherford, 69min), Paterson, Barker (Tarbuck, 69min)