Cammell Laird were knocked out of the FA Cup at the Extra Preliminary round on Thursday night, after being beaten by St. Helens Town, 5-4 on penalties.

Lairds took the lead shortly after half time with a corner directly going into the net from Paul Bathgate. The hosts levelled midway through the second period thanks to Colyfar Kamara.

The game also had a red card, Neil Weaver saw red after two yellow card offences towards the end of the match, meaning he is unavailable for the next round.

The game began as a scrappy affair, with both sides looking to get a foothold on the match.

St. Helens started off the better side with Jesse Robinson who showed good trickery on the near side, before floating a cross into the danger area, but it was just too high and dipped over the bar.

Soon after, there was another chance for the hosts to open the scoring, but for some super defending by Cammell Laird, firstly a 50/50 challenge and then to block a shot from Weaver, to keep the scores level.

As the half progressed, there was another chance for the hosts; a short corner was taken to Daniel Lomax, before Weaver’s header at the back post just strayed wide after a fabulous cross in.

While Lairds continued to keep the home side at bay, St. Helens continued to knock on the door. Weaver had a chance to score, but his effort smashed against the woodwork, before Robinson’s cross went straight into the danger zone, only for nobody to be there to meet it.

Lairds had a chance to score just before the break. Josh Donnelly was kept out before the ball fell to Isaac Jones, who’s shot went just wide, to bring an end to the first half.

The second period was much more of a match between two equal sides, which started off, a flyer. 

Following a corner straight from the kick-off, a corner from Bathgate curled straight into the goal, giving the visitors the lead.

Soon after, Lairds looked to double their lead and perhaps should have done, with Donnelly through on goal but Nathan Wolland saved with his feet to prevent a second in quick succession.

Again, Lairds looked to double the score line minutes after, when a effort was blocked on the goal line by St. Helens defender Lomax, who kept the tie alive.

After rued missed chances for Lairds, they were made to pay when the hosts levelled just after the hour mark. A short corner caused havoc for Lairds inside the penalty area, and the ball was eventually scrambled home by Kamara.

Inside the last ten minutes, after a challenge on Weaver, it all kicked off. Handbags would be the word to describe it.

Referee Josh Cassidy showed a number of cards in the scuffle, including a harsh second yellow to Weaver for delaying the restart of play.

With the score level at the end of ninety minutes, the match went to penalties. With all five going in for St. Helens, they won the match with Lairds missing the one spot kick in the shootout.

St Helens will now progress to the next Preliminary Round where they will face Mossley next Saturday.

Report by Aidan Jones @ajones_media