- Wigan Athletic progressed to the FA Cup second-round with a hard-fought extra-time victory at National League side Solihull Moors.
- The hosts took a controversial lead early in the second half when referee Charles Breakspear awarded a penalty and Adam Rooney converted the spot kick.
- Latics rallied and drew level on 66 minutes when Jason Kerr deflected Gwion Edwards strike into the net.
- The visitors dominated in extra time and they deservedly sealed the tie when Callum Lang headed home Max Power’s free-kick.
- The 2013 FA Cup winners now travel to Colchester United in the second round on Sunday 5th December.
Leam Richardson made one change from the FA Cup tie at the DW Stadium with Gavin Massey replacing Will Keane.
Latics enjoyed plenty of possession in the early stages but it was the Moors captain Kyle Storer who tried his luck on 12 minutes and volleyed over the crossbar from 25 yards.
For the visitors, Lang had a shot spilled by Moors goalkeeper Ryan Boot, but the keeper retrieved his mistake and gathered the ball at the second attempt.
Power and Tom Pearce wasted free kick opportunities as the visitors pressed but the game remained goalless at half time.
Early in the second half Solihull were awarded a controversial penalty by referee Charles Breakspear. Following a corner the ball was handled by Moors defender Lois Maynard in the area but bizarrely the referee awarded a penalty to the hosts which was converted by Rooney.
Fortunately the referee’s mistake wasn’t to prove crucial to the final result.
Latics showed good resilience and upped their game. As they pressed forward Boot tipped over Callum Lang’s dipping volley and then saved Darikwa’s shot from the resulting corner.
The visitors were level on 66 minutes when a mix up in the Moors defence allowed Edwards to shoot and Kerr to deflect his effort past Boot.
The hosts didn’t capitulate however and Darikwa made an important block to deny James Ball an opportunity to regain the lead.
At the other end, Lang’s strike was spilled by Boot but Edwards couldn’t quite convert the loose ball on the follow up.
Then in the second minute of added time, Edwards was denied by a superb save from Boot as he tried to curl the ball into the corner of the net.
Early in the first half of extra-time Darikwa’s cross found Charlie Wyke inside the box and the striker turned and fired towards goal but his effort was well-saved by Boot low down to his right.
Soon afterwards another Darikwa cross was headed back across goal by Wyke, but Edwards could only fire wide on the volley.
In the 104th minute Latics were finally ahead when Power’s excellent free kick from the left was glanced home by Lang.
The hosts were not giving up however and in the second half of extra-time Latics needed a goal-line clearance from Massey to stay in front.
With 10 minutes of extra-time remaining Edwards should have sealed the tie as he went one-on-one with the Solihull keeper, but Boot made an excellent save low down to his left deny him.
Latics lived dangerously in the dying seconds and Jamie Jones had to make a good save to deny Ball, before the midfielder fired over from a great position. When the final whistle came Latics’ players gave a huge sigh of relief.
Afterwards the Latics manager Leam Richardson gave credit to Solihull for their efforts over the two games.
“The main thing is to qualify and be in the hat for Colchester away, but I thought credit goes to Solihull,” he said.
“They challenged us over the two games and we had to find a way. Sometimes you have to do that in the FA Cup, and although I thought the first goal is possibly a mistake by the officials, thankfully it didn’t affect the outcome.
“It was great for Solihull. 3,700 plus, which for an FA Cup tie under the lights on a Tuesday, is fantastic. You can see where they want to go as a Football Club and tonight was important that we respected ourselves and the opposition.
“The most important thing is that we got through tonight and now the preparations start for Saturday because we’ve got a big week, next week.”