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Last Updated: Saturday, 7 January 2006, 19:34 GMT
Nuneaton relish Cup cash reward
Nuneaton boss Roger Ashby
Nuneaton boss Roger Ashby said their draw at home to Middlesbrough in the FA Cup might have saved the club.

"It has just been magnificent - a magnificent performance and a magnificent day," said Ashby, whose side earned a replay with a 1-1 draw.

"It feels like we won the game to be honest and the supporters who are here will remember this for the rest of their lives.

"That replay in the FA Cup will be a saviour for us financially."

Nuneaton equalised with a 90th-minute penalty from Gez Murphy but the manager felt were fully deserving of the draw.

Ashby added: "We more than matched them and we caused them a lot of problems all the time going forward.

"I'm just pleased my players have done this against a side from the top level. This club has a fantastic spirit and I thought that shone through for the 90 minutes.

"I also thought we had another 100% penalty turned down so we could even have won it, but in the end with only a couple of minutes left we got the decision and Gez was so confident from 12 yards."

When you're only leading 1-0 it's always dangerous and that's why the FA Cup is such a great competition
Steve McClaren

Middlesbrough boss Steve McClaren admitted his side were fortunate to earn a replay after being outplayed for much of the game by the Conference North side.

McClaren said: "There are so many upsets in the FA Cup each year and we were very nearly one of them.

"It was very, very disappointing but it could have been even worse, and we live to fight another day and we have to make sure we get into the next round.

"It was always going to be a difficult game and in the end we were fortunate it was just a draw.

"We came here hoping to win and I have been involved in the FA Cup for too long to take anything for granted.

"We prepared well, came down and looked at the pitch yesterday and after we went in front I hoped that would be it but we couldn't finish them off and all credit to Nuneaton who kept going.

"But when you're only leading 1-0 it's always dangerous and that's why the FA Cup is such a great competition."


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