Adebayo the stoppage time hero as Luton defeat Wigan in FA Cup replay

Amari'i Bell moves forward against Wigan this eveningAmari'i Bell moves forward against Wigan this evening
Amari'i Bell moves forward against Wigan this evening
FA Cup third round replay: Wigan Athletic 1 Luton Town 2

Town striker Elijah Adebayo scored a late, late, late winner as the Hatters reached the FA Cup fourth round with a stoppage time winner over Wigan Athletic this evening.

It had looked for all the world that a seemingly never-ending game would be going to extra time, a further 30 minutes that no-one really wanted, until Adebayo thankfully struck in seven minutes of added on time, with a classy close range finish.

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The visitors had made four changes to the side who lost 3-2 to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday, as Gabe Osho and Reece Burke returned to the defence, with Louie Watson and Cauley Woodrow also starting.

Carlton Morris missed out with a slight calf injury, Dan Potts, Tom Lockyer and Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu dropping to the bench.

The visitors made a decent start, Woodrow showing some sublime skills to ghost past two markers and see his scooped shot deflect over the bar for an early corner.

That set-piece came to nothing, but another on 11 minutes almost bore fruit, cleared out to Watson whose deep ball was nodded back across by Woodrow, Adebayo's header straight at Ben Amos.

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Still Luton looked the most likely to break the deadlock, Burke's instinctive cross leading to Woodrow getting underneath his header, before James Bree's 30-yard free kick didn't come down in time.

Wigan created their first opportunity midway through the half, Thelo Aasgaard, he who scored a cracker at Kenilworth Road in the Latics' Championship victory, teed up on the edge of the box only to drag badly wide.

A first half with little goalmouth action was then almost typically followed by two in the opening six minutes of the second period.

Less than 60 seconds in and Luton were behind, a clearance met on the volley by Aasgaard as the former Liverpool youngster thrashed his effort into the top corner.

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Yes, it was a brilliant strike by the midfielder, but as mentioned, the Hatters knew all about his ability from distance, and really should have had a man stationed at least in his vicinity.

However, Town hit back with an instant equaliser just five minutes later when Allan Campbell's low cross as met by Woodrow whose first-time effort was parried by Amos, the forward volleying the rebound back where it came, with referee Matthew Donohue's watch confirming it had crossed the line.

Just after the hour mark, boss Rob Edwards brought on the scorer from the first game, Harry Cornick, for Campbell, but as expected, the contest reverted to type, with neither side looking capable of winning it in normal time.

Finally, Luton started to pick up the tempo, clearly not wanting to prolong the fixture, as they began to dominate both possession and territory.

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A deep cross was met by Adebayo and cleared away, with Doughty teed up to see his fierce effort blocked.

It looked like Cornick might find the net once more, as he sprang the offside trap with 15 minutes left, and went clean through.

The attacker sorted his feet out to squeeze a low shot past Amos, but not the covering James McLean who cleared off the line, with Donohue confirming it hadn't gone over this time.

Although Will Keane was unable to test Ethan Horvath, as time started to run out, still Edwards’ side looked the more likely, Adebayo spinning and shooting straight at Amos from 12 yards.

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There had long been a growing inevitability that extra time was on the cards, Aasgaard trying to prevent that, although on this occasion placed his volley too close to Horvath.

However, Town then won it when a cross from Cornick made it all the way through to Adebayo, and this time, to the delight of his team-mates, manager, and 191 travelling fans, he swivelled and rifled past Amos to seal a fourth round tie with Grimsby Town later this month.

Latics: Ben Amos, Tom Naylor, Jack Whatmough, Max Power, Curtis Tilt, Callum Lang (Josh Magennis 63), Joe Bennett (James McLean 59), Ashley Fletcher (Will Keane 64), Tendayi Darikwa (C), Thelo Aasgaard, Charlie Hughes.

Subs not used: Jamie Jones, Ryan Nyambe, Gwion Edwards, Anthony Scully, Baba Adeeko, Abdi Sharif.

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Hatters: Ethan Horvath, James Bree (Tom Lockyer 90), Reece Burke, Gabe Osho, Amari'i Bell, Alfie Doughty, Louie Watson (Pelly-Ruddock Mpanzu 90), Allan Campbell (Harry Cornick 64), Jordan Clark (C), Cauley Woodrow, Elijah Adebayo (Cameron Jerome 90).

Subs not used: Harry Isted, Casy Pettit, Elliot Thorpe, Dan Potts, Luke Berry.

Referee: Matthew Donohue.

Booked: Whatmough 55, Tilt 79, Burke 90, Hughes 90.

Attendance: 5,668 (191 Luton).