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Coventry 2-1 Morecambe

Coventry City's Gary McSheffrey scores his team's first goal. Picture: PA

Coventry City's Gary McSheffrey scores his team's first goal. Picture: PA

Morecambe bowed out of the FA Cup at the second round stage with a narrow defeat to Coventry on Saturday.

Goals either side of half-time from Gary McSheffrey and former Shrimps favourite Carl Baker put the home side in command at the Ricoh Arena.

Morecambe did however give their League 1 hosts a fright, Kevin Ellison pulling a goal back on 76 minutes, but Jim Bentley's side couldn't find an equaliser to take the game to a replay.

The visitors made a confident start, Chris Dunn in the home net having to palm away a low Lewis Alessandra effort on just five minutes.

The Sky Blues' best early opening fell to Frank Moussa who hammered over a half-volley from the edge of the area on nine miuntes after Baker's shot had been blocked.

But it was the visitors who continued to have the lion's share of the early possession, one slick passing move seeing Jack Redshaw nearly release Alessandra one-on-one with Dunn with a nifty back heel.

The home side did have a good chance on 27 minutes, Roy O'Donovan counter-attacked at pace after a poor Shrimps corner and fed McSheffrey who could only poke his effort wide of Barry Roche's left-hand post from 15 yards out.

The Shrimps didn't learn from that let off and Mark Robins' side were ahead 10 minutes later from the penalty spot.

The visiting defence was left exposed once again as Coventry counter-attacked from a corner and former Preston midfielder Adam Barton released McSheffrey in the box who was felled by Roche as he rounded the Shrimps 'keeper.

The former Birmingham man picked himself up and dispatched the penalty confidently low to Roche's right.

The Sky Blues then had their first sustained spell of pressure, Richard Wood coming close to doubling his side's lead five minutes before the break, but he could only head Baker's cross harmlessly over from six yards.

After what had been a promising start for the Shrimps, things went from bad to worse just 18 seconds into the second half.

Home skipper Baker had the time and space just outside the right corner of the area to curl an excellent left-foot shot past a motionless Roche to double his side's lead.

Despite the shock of an early goal, the Shrimps did threaten themselves in the opening stages of the second half, Andy Fleming firing over from 20 yards out after the ball had broken to him.

But it was Baker, still Morecambe's record signing, who was pulling the strings for the home side after a quiet opening period.

He saw another left-footed effort from range whistle over Roche's bar just before the hour mark.

Richard Wood thought he'd made it 3-0 on 67 minutes but he was flagged offside after turning the ball home after Moussa had seen his original effort saved one-on-one with Roche.

Just when it looked as if the Shrimps were running out of ideas, Kevin Ellison gave his side a lifeline out of nothing.

Battling to win the ball in the air he took it down on his chest and fired a great right-footed effort beyond Dunn and into the top corner from 22 yards with just under a quarter of an hour remaining.

But despite showing plenty of attacking intent in the closing stages the Shrimps were unable to find a leveller to keep themselves in the world's most famous cup competition.

Coventry: Dunn, Christie (Clarke 86), Wood, Edjenguele, Adams, Baker (capt), Jennings, Barton, Moussa, McSheffrey, O'Donovan. Subs not used: Burge (GK), Cameron, McDonald, Fleck, Ball, Lobjoit.

Booked: O'Donovan

Morecambe: Roche, Wright, Fenton (capt), McCready, Threlfall (Haining 88), Drummond, McDonald (Reid 70), Fleming, Alessandra, Ellison, Redshaw (Parkinson 80). Subs not used: Arestidou (GK), McGee, Parrish, Doyle.

Booked: Roche, Fleming

Referee: Carl Boyeson (replaced by Graham Horwood at half-time)

Attendance: 6,339 (610 from Morecambe)

 

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