Date: 7th January 2018 at 9:30am
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The FA Cup, it can be the best thing since a giant man sized Yorkshire pudding filled with a dinner and half with and a gallon of gravy, or it can leave you cursing your manager and players as we live in a world where some of the best foods are given names such as Lancashire hotpot or Manchester tart does not make all things fair. I dare to say, most readers of this will be the latter. This month, not only am I going to look at players that have played games, I’m going to look at some of the movements of ex players for you as well.

Phil Parkinson you cannot fail to mention during cup weekends. Bolton Wanderers hosted Huddersfield Town at home. The game didn’t go to plan for the Cup wizard with the Terriers winning 1-2 at the Macron stadium. Parkinson has faced Town twice in the past few years in cup competition, his last coincidentally by the same score line a 1-2 loss, that time with Bradford City in the League cup in August 2013. Felipe Morais and Aaron Wilbraham featured for Wanderers.

James Hanson has made a loan move for the rest of the season from Sheffield United to bottom of the table Bury. An interesting switch for the ex City legend who was finding it difficult this season breaking into an inform Blades side, which is no fault of his own. A great servant in League 2, but a better player in League 1 and least forgetting the cups. Big Jim has only 2 games to his name this season, a start in the League cup, home to Walsall and getting subbed on 52 minutes, and then coming on for the last quarter of an hour at home to Fulham in the Championship. Hanson’s Blades stats reads 15 games scoring once. He’s scored just the once since the end of November 2016, has he lost that scoring ability? A bit of a hero to many Bantams, hopefully he will knock them in during his spell at Bury and help them stave off relegation.

Nahki Wells is starting to make appearances for Burnley, now playing his 3rd game in 8 days over the Xmas/New Year period. Wells’ latest outing was as a 69th minute sub as Burnley lost 4-1 in the FA Cup away to Man City. Nahki now has 4 games under his belt since the 23rd December, 3 in the Premiership and 1 in the FA Cup. All appearances have come off the bench, his first 3 coming on after 81-86 minutes. Wells’ has still to start a game, the last being the play off final win as Huddersfield Town won 4-3 on penalties at Wembley in May 2017 against Reading.

Mark Bower had a bit of a tough weekend as the Bradford Park Avenue manager saw his side lose 2-1 at home to Spennymoor Town. Despite the loss, Avenue still occupy the last play off place of 7th having played a game more than York City who are 1 point behind them. However the season ends, Bower is doing a remarkable job.

Jon Stead scored the only goal as Notts Co. caused a bit of a shock as the 4th division club won 0-1 away at 2nd division Brentwood in the FA Cup. Stead has now scored 6 goals this season.

Devante Cole helped Fleetwood Town at home to Leicester City earn a replay against the ex Premiership Champions with the sore ending 0-0. Cole will still get a chance to add to his 12 goals of the season against the Premiership side when the Fleet travel to the King Power Stadium. The question is, does Leicester’s new stadium actually have a name since Filbert Street was demolished?

Mark Yeates scored his 4th goal of the season to put Eastleigh 3-1 up at home to Guiseley with the match ending 4-2. Eastleigh have climbed to 15th in the conference who find themselves with games in hand over teams around them. This was Yeates’ first goal on home soil since Oldham lost to Barnsley back in November 2015. Mark’s last goal on home soil whilst on the winning team is back in December 2014 as Bradford City beat Dartford 4-1 in the FA Cup and his last in the league at home in a winning match was again for Bradford City back in August 2013, the score 4-0 home to Carlisle. So the goal was long overdue.

Scott Loach had a bit of a stinker in goal as Hartlepool lost 4-2 away at Dagenham and Redbridge in the Conference. The Pools sit on 33 points, and you would expect them to avoid relegation in 17th spot 8 points above the bottom 4.

Kevin Ellison only took 10 minutes to put Morecambe 0-1 up away at Grimsby Town in League 2, his 7th of the season, and his 70th league goal for the Shrimps. The game ended 0-2. Garry Thompson came on as a last minute sub for the away team. Nathan Clarke played the full match for Town with the result lifting Morecambe up to 20th in the table, 7 points above relegation and Grimsby drop to 15th.

Zavon Hines has transferred from Maidstone United in the Conference to Chesterfield in League 2 as his contract was about to end this month. The 29 year old made 22 appearances scoring 7 times for the Stones. Chesterfield sit 1 point from safety in the table having played a game more than all the teams around them. Glad to see Hines back in league football.

Marc McNulty deserves a mention, although he didn’t score, 4th division Coventry City faced 1st division Stoke City in the FA Cup. In front of 14199 supporters, the Sky blues caused one of the upsets of the third round winning 2-1.

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