DARWEN crashed out the FA Vase despite a spirited performance against Guisborough Town.

Manager Steve Wilkes adopted a solid 5-4-1 formation with Denny Khan as a lone striker in a bid to contain the Middlesbrough-based side who play their football in Division One of the Albany Northern League.

And on 20 minutes the gamble paid off as Lee Webb gave the visitors a shock lead, coolly converting a one-on-one after being put in by Matt Anderton.

With Anderton, Matt Atkinson and 18-year-old Phil Docker outstanding in the centre of defence, Darwen stood firm despite the physical presence of Guisborough striker John Outhwaite.

"We were very comfortable for much of the game," said Wilkes. "They are a powerful side and we were more than a match for them. I was very confident we would hang on for the win, or at least take them back to the Anchor, yet some individual errors cost us the game."

Indeed, Outhwaite got the home side back on level terms 20 minutes from time after Lee Purvis failed to collect a weak bobbling cross following Scott Grundy's failure to shepherd the ball out for a goal kick.

The home side then went in search of a winner and it duly arrived five minutes from time - a Guisborough forward latched onto a ball over the top and lobbed the onrushing Purvis from 25 yards.