Boreham Wood’s resilience broke in the 57th minute, but before that the team from the National League hadn’t been overly tested by their Premier League opponents. Yet, in the second half and once Frank Lampard’s side had scored the opener, the gulf between the two teams looked a little more like reality.
Still, Luke Garrard was “gutted” that Boreham Wood couldn’t muster a greater challenge in their 2-0 defeat to Everton and failed to register a shot at goal. Nevertheless, ‘the Wood’ manager admitted that his players will celebrate their FA Cup run, which spanned seven games, with a few beers.
“What this group of players have achieved, what this club has achieved, has been fantastic,” said Garrard. “I am just gutted we haven’t been able to give our fans a moment – they were colossal all evening and it was a shame we didn’t test Asmir [Begovic] in goal enough, but what we have achieved in this cup run has been fantastic.
“To come to Goodison in the first 45 minutes and not concede was immense and that is 500 minutes without conceding a goal in the FA Cup, so we have to take great pride in what we have achieved. They [Everton] went up several gears in the second half when they brought on Richarlison, with the way he and Rondon work together, and (Anthony) Gordon is unbelievable, frightening.”
Salomon Rondon scored both of Everton’s goals and took the tie beyond Boreham Wood who sat 77 places below Everton in the league standings. The National League side, who are also vying for promotion into League Two, have also been granted a mid-season mini-break by club chairman Danny Hunter in reward for their cup run.
“We are going for a winter break in Dubai,” added Garrard. “We have a free weekend in March and it is something we are looking at – that shows you the measure of the chairman, that he thinks the boys need to be rewarded.”
'Rondon gives us something different'
Anything other than progression into the quarter-finals would have been disappointing for Everton, but it wasn’t until Richarlison was sent on in the second half that the home side started to pose a threat. It was Rondon, however, who put the ball beyond Boreham Wood ‘keeper Taye Ashley-Hammond — once with a near-post finish and another with a strong header.
“He’s been an ideal squad member with his attitude and when he comes in he contributes and he gives us something different, a physical presence in the box and we need that,” Lampard said of the Venezuelan striker.
On his half-time team talk, the Everton manager said: “I am here not that long and the players need to hear a message, not just me shouting at them. We made a change to get Richarlison on, another player behind their midfield line. I have got no problem with how the game went.” A trip to Crystal Palace awaits them in the quarter-finals.