Tring Athletic secured a terrific 2-0 victory against Wembley as they produced one of their best performances this season against a strong side who could still have a say in the title race.
Wembley, whose captain Ian Bates was making his 950th appearance for the club, enjoyed a lot of possession during the first half but failed to dent the solid Athletic defence – with 18-year-old Jack Hopwood making his debut in goal.
The home side were presented with an opportunity when they won a free-kick in a promising position, but leading scorer Yassine Fehmi-Gil merely found Hopwood’s midriff.
There was a lot of good play and movement from the home side, but Athletic defended well as a unit and began to create chances of their own.
Taylor Collins, Kevin McManus and Paul Jeffrey all had chances for Tring as the half progressed, before the latter whipped a ball into the area for Chris Salmon to give the visitors a precious lead which they held onto until the break.
Wembley showed their intent by bringing on second top scorer Joe Wright at the start of the second half, and he was presented with his side’s best chance of the match when a sass from Bates sent him into the area but he shot past the post.
Despite some sustained pressure from Wembley, it was Athletic who wrapped up the win in the 64th minute when McManus won the ball and fed Chris Vardy, who in turn found Collins.
The youngster had too much pace for the defender and he ran through and calmly tucked the ball away to give Athletic a crucial second goal.
On Saturday, Tring have a huge game at home to Norwich United in the FA Vase.
They have the opportunity to create a bit of history by going through to the last-32 of this prestigious national competition – something they have never achieved before.