FA Cup: Norton striker Micky Lennon to miss Shildon replay

Norton United signed Micky Lennon from Hednesford Town
Norton United striker Micky Lennon got to the FA Cup first round last season with Hednesford Town

Norton United striker Micky Lennon is out of Wednesday night's FA Cup fourth qualifying round replay at Shildon as he is away on holiday.

It is half-term week for Lennon, whose full-time job is as a PE teacher at Discovery Academy at nearby Longton.

Lennon is the only player with the Evo-Stik League club to have reached the FA Cup first round proper before, with Hednesford Town last season.

He played a part in the equaliser in Saturday's 1-1 draw against Shildon.

Norton looked as if they might be up against it when Mark Hudson put the north-east side ahead on 10 minutes.

Home left-back Paul Taylor was then sent off five minutes before the break, before 10-man Norton responded.

A link-up with Chris Baker pressured Shildon defender Carl Jones into putting through his own net on 65 minutes to book a replay.

Where they rank in the English football pyramid
Norton United currently lie 12th in the Evo-Stik League First Division South - the eighth tier of English football. Shildon are 11th in the Northern League Division One - a level below in the ninth tier, the lowest-ranked side left in

Part-timers Norton have already gone three rounds further in the Cup than they had done previously in their 25-year history.

Having made it into the hat for the first round proper, they pulled another home tie, against Conference side Gateshead on 8 November, if they can make it past Northern League side Shildon - the lowest-ranked club left in Monday night's televised draw.

"If we beat Shildon, we would have another home tie and could have all the excitement of last Saturday all over again," said manager Scott Dundas. "It's a massive game for our club."

The two sides are due to meet again up in County Durham at Dean Street on Wednesday evening.

Norman Smurthwaite, owner of Potteries neighbours Port Vale, has offered use of the League One club's matchday team coach and will be travelling with the team.

"It'll be fantastic for the lads to travel to the game in style", Norton chairman Steve Beaumont told BBC Radio Stoke.

"We wanted Port Vale, Crewe, Coventry, Sheffield United or Portsmouth. That would have been a great incentive for the players to try and get through. But we've had a great time so far in the FA Cup this season and we'll see how far we can go."

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