BERNARD Mensah scored twice as Redditch United eased to an impressive 4-1 win against 10-man Rushall Olympic to advance to the next round of the FA Cup.
Mensah twice put the game out of Rushall’s reach with Ryan Boothe also on target and an own goal ensuring the Reds came away from Dales Lane with an emphatic victory in First Round Qualifying.
The Reds will face National League North side Peterborough Sports in Second Round Qualifying with the game to take place on Saturday, September 17 with kick-off at 3pm at the Trico Stadium.
And Redditch took the lead on 15 minutes when a Rushall defender turned the ball into his own net under pressure from Robbie Bunn as he raced to meet Max Sheaf’ low cross.
The Reds doubled their lead just three minutes later when Mensah tapped in at the back post after Sheaf played a superb defence splitting pass into his path.
And Matt Clarke’s side thought they had the game wrapped up inside half an hour only for Boothe’s effort to be ruled out for a foul.
Rushall eventually began to assert themselves as Reds goalkeeper Kieran Boucher made a fine reaction save to keep out Sam Mantom’s flicked effort.
However, the home side deservedly halved the deficit on 42 minutes when Kristian Green stroked the ball home after a long throw-in was flicked on at the near post.
The visitors restored their two-goal lead in first-half injury time when Boothe’s brilliant near post flick found the net via the post from Lewis Hudson’s low cross.
And the task became even harder for Rushall when their captain, Richard Batchelor, was sent off on 53 minutes after he received a second yellow card for an elbow on Jack Byrne.
There were few notable chances in the second period before Mensah wrapped up the win with his second of the game late on as his curling effort found the top left corner from Sheaf’s pass.
Redditch are next in action at home to Needham Market on Saturday, September 10 with kick-off at 3pm at the Trico Stadium.