Even without star striker Dylan Parker who is trialling with League One side Walsall Town Youth were still too strong for Bedworth as they progressed into the Second Round of the Birmingham County F A Youth Cup (which now carries the title of the Joel Richards Memorial Cup) at the MoodChimp Stadium on Thursday evening.
George Kirby had the unenviable task of taking over Parker’s number 9 shirt and responded in the best possible with two well taken goals of his own with the two Harrys of Hartin and Jones also being on the scoresheet for Nick Ballinger’s side while Sam Holden and Ryan Skidmore were on target for Bedworth.
Town took the game to Bedworth straight from the kick off with Ben Couki going close inside the opening five minutes. Tom Rowe and James Pomeroy troubled the Bedworth defence with their pace down the flanks with Yussuf Saleem catching the eye with his skill on the ball in midfield as Town had most of the meaningful possession.
Bedworth keeper Ziggy Bentley saved well from Kirby and both Hartin and Pomeroy had decent efforts deflected behind before Town took the lead in the 29th minute
Saleem’s inch perfect pass released Kirby down the inside left channel and he ran on to coolly slot the ball past the advancing Bentley.
And five minutes before half time Kirby almost doubled Town’s advantage when his shot looped off a defender with the ball being desperately clawed away by the backpedalling Bentley as it threatened to drop behind him into the net.
Bedworth made a bright start to the second d half with Holden having their best try yet comfortably held by Town keeper Archie Donaldson, but Town were soon back on the attack with Bentley saving from Hartin, and they went two up on 56 minutes.
Bentley did well to beat away a fierce Hartin effort but Jones seized on the rebound and from the edge of the penalty area hit a sumptuous drive into the top corner.
But to their credit Bedworth hit back to enjoy their best spell of the evening. As Town lost concentration at the back Euan McEnroe crossed from the left for Holden to make it 2-1 and an equaliser suddenly didn’t look far away.
But McEnroe volleyed over when unmarked inside the six yard box and another attempt was somehow scrambled off the line as Town survived before recovering their earlier composure to put the result beyond doubt with two goals in four minutes.
In the 70th minute Rowe sent Kirby clear down the right and hr cut in to shoot across Bentley into the far corner, and soon after Hartin added Town’s fourth with a crisp finish from 12 yards out.
Bedworth kept trying and Skidmore slid home their second from close range with two minutes to go, but by then Town were safely through to the next round.