Hebburn still on course to win the FA Vase twice in the space of 20 days.
Hebburn Town have taken the first step towards their extraordinary bid to win the FA Vase twice in the space of 20 days.
A late winner from substitute Olly Martin gave the Hornets a 3-2 victory over their Northern League rivals Consett in the pandemic-delayed 2019/20 final at Wembley this afternoon.
The Hornets could be back at the national stadium for the 2020/21 final on May 22 - with US Portsmouth or Binfield their opponents.
But in order to book a Wembley return, Kevin Bolam’s side must negotiate two more ties.
They face Warrington Rylands in the quarter-final next Saturday with the winners progressing to a last-four fixture with Walsall Wood.
Hebburn, who had won 11 of their 12 Northern League games this season prior to curtailment, were forced to show their resilient side after falling behind twice to Consett through Ali Alshabeeb and Dale Pearson.
But equalisers from Amar Purewal and Michael Richardson gave Martin the platform to grab a winning goal five minutes from time
Hebburn are the seventh club from the Northern League to win the Vase since 2011, following on from Whitley Bay, Dunston UTS, Spennymoor, North Shields, Morpeth and South Shields. In addition, West Auckland were beaten in the 2014 final by Hampshire club Sholing.
In contrast, US Portsmouth are aiming to become only the fourth winner from the Wessex League since that league was formed in 1986 after Wimborne Town (1992), Winchester City (2004) and Sholing (2014).
Bolam has now won all 11 of the Vase ties he has taken charge of, including a penalty shoot-out win at Corinthian in last September’s delayed 2019/20 semi.
That went to extra time, thanks to an 88th minute penalty leveller from Graeme Armstrong when Hebburn were down to 10 men following a red card.
They have shown similar battling spirit since then in this season’s Vase - coming from behind to beat North Shields, needing a 93rd minute leveller to force penalties against Vauxhall Motors, and requiring an 89th minute goal to beat Congleton in the fifth round.
Taking into account a run to the fifth round in 2018/19, and Hebburn have now only lost one of their last 18 Vase ties.