Notts County 0 Harrogate Town 1 - Will Smith secures Wembley return

Harrogate Town's Will Smith.Harrogate Town's Will Smith.
Harrogate Town's Will Smith.
Having never once played at Wembley in 106 years, Harrogate Town are set for a second visit to the home of football in a matter of months.

Simon Weaver’s team, who beat Notts County in the National League play-off final at the start of August, will return to the famous arch later this season having once again got the better of the Magpies in Tuesday’s 2019/20 FA Trophy semi-final.

Will Smith scored the only goal of the game just before half-time, and although Harrogate weren’t anywhere near their best on the night, they managed to see out the second period without too many scares, setting up a showdown with Concord Rangers of National League South in the competition’s final.

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Town started the brighter of the sides, however clear-cut chances were at a premium, until the visitors began to move through the gears with the interval approaching.

George Thomson, Connor Hall and Brendan Kiernan all went close to breaking the deadlock before centre-half Smith eventually did.

Thomson delivered a 45th-minute free-kick from the left to the right-hand side of the County area, where Aaron Martin rose highest and nodded the ball back across goal for Smith to place an excellent header just inside the post.

The second period was a scrappy affair, with both sides guilty of giving the ball away on a regular basis, though Town had already made their mark.

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Notts County: Slocombe; Brindley, Rawlinson, Graham, Chicksen; Reeves, Doyle, Roberts (Kelly-Evans 78), Rodrigues (Boldewijn 68); Thomas (Sam 68), Wootton. Unused substitutes: Pilling, McCrory, Lacey.

Harrogate Town: Cracknell; Fallowfield, Smith, Hall, Burrell; Thomson, Falkingham, Kerry, Kiernan; Martin (Stead 90), Muldoon (Beck 69). Unused substitutes: Minter, Lawlor, Walker, Lokko.

Referee: W Finnie (Bedfordshire).

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