Frantic Finish

ARGYLE remain in the FA Cup draw for the third round after 15 minutes of high drama concluded an entertaining Westcountry derby at Bristol Rovers.

The Pilgrims fell behind to a goal from Liam Sercombe in the closing stages but quickly levelled with a penalty from Antoni Sarcevic, and the same Pilgrim then had a second spot-kick saved in the dying seconds.

From going out of the competition to the brink of advancing, Argyle experienced the full range of football emotions but can take great confidence into the replay at Home Park after an excellent overall display at their League One hosts.

“The last 15 minutes were [a proper cup tie],” said Argyle manager Ryan Lowe. “Our lads played some good football and created a few opportunities to score, especially in the first half, but it wasn’t to be.

“Overall, I’m happy because, with 15 minutes to go, we were potentially out of the FA Cup and then with 60 seconds to go, we were potentially through to the next round. I can’t fault the boys, they’ve been terrific.

“I don’t know what the possession stats were but we will always try to dominate possession stats, with our flow and the way we want to play our football, from the back and through the thirds. We’re getting better, keep learning, keep improving and I think we proved that today.

“We’ve got a great set of lads, playing the right style of football and we’re getting better. We had an attacking bench because, in the cup competitions, you may want to throw on three strikers to try and lift it.

“In terms of selection, the team picked itself. The lads are on a good run of form and they’ve all been terrific in training as well. Today, was a result we will take because we are in the hat.”