Eastleigh earn FA Cup replay in 1-1 draw at home to Crewe

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Marcus Barnes came off the bench to earn National League Eastleigh an FA Cup second-round replay against League Two high-fliers Crewe Alexandra in front of 1,806 spectators at The Silverlake Stadiim.

The forward, on loan from Southampton. tapped in on the goalline moments after coming on to put Ben Strevens’ side into the third-round hat for Monday.

It was a deserved draw for the Spitfires who more than matched their opponents, especially in the second half, when they created numerous chances.

Crewe had gone in front through Owen Dale’s first-half header, and could have won it after the equaliser, but Daniel Powell’s effort struck the post.

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An entertaining, end-to-end game at the Silverlake Stadium saw a total of 36 efforts on goal – 22 of them to the non-league side.

But a combination of poor finishing and excellent goalkeeping at both ends kept the score down.

Crewe goalscorer Dale missed a glorious opportunity before his opener, heading off target from just a couple of yards out with the keeper stranded.

Dale made up for his mistake as he headed in a corner for the side third in League Two, but Eastleigh refused to lie down after the break.

Tyrone Barnett was denied by a wonderful save by Will Jaaskelainen but, just as the hosts looked to be running out of time, Barnes pounced on Scott Rendell’s flick.

The Spitfires or Crewe are number 53 in the draw with the likes of Manchester City and Arsenal in with them (7pm this evening, BBC 2). Eastleigh will be concentrating on Tuesday night’s match however at home to rock bottom side Wrexham.