Rutherford: Chi City beaten by better team in FA Vase

Chichester City battle away at 1874 Northwich - but it ended in defeat / Picture by Tommy McMillan
Chichester City battle away at 1874 Northwich - but it ended in defeat / Picture by Tommy McMillan

Chichester City boss Miles Rutherford reflected on their FA Vase exit and said: I’ve got no complaints.

He felt his team, who had reached the last 16 for the first time in the club’s history just a year after getting to the last 32 for only the second time, had gone out to a very good side in the shape of 1874 Northwich.

The tie looked to be heading for an extra-time and possibly an Oaklands Park replay with the score locked at 0-0 in the last minute – only for the North West Counties League premier-division side to break Chi hearts with a late winner.

Rutherford said: “I’ve got no complaints whatsoever. We’ve got beaten by a very, very good side.

“They kept the ball, they made us work hard. We had some nerves and some players that hadn’t played in that sort of game before.

“It’s obviously a learning curve for them. I think there were two or three players wanting in the first half. We spoke to the lads at half-time. I wasn’t going to moan at players.

“If Northwich played in in our area they would be playing a lot higher than the county league. From one to 11 I didn’t see a bad player. They had two players in the middle of the park that could play two, three leagues higher than they are at the moment.

“We tried as hard as we could. It’s disappointing to lose in the 90th minute but if I’m honest they controlled the game. They didn’t necessarily have loads of chances. We defended ever so well.

“They must have had 80 per cent of the ball in the first half. They made us work hard and pulled us into places we didn’t want to be. We had players that didn’t know whether to come or go. We were all over the place at times. Ender’s made two or three decent saves.

“All credit to Northwich. I hope they do well in the next round. I think they will. They’re a very good side.”

Chi had beaten Deal, Whitstable and Horley on their way to the fifth round and earned £4,650 in total from this season’s run.