CARLISLE UNITED booked an FA Cup third-round trip to Championship Cardiff City and £54,000 prize money after Aaron Hayden’s first-half header dumped abject Forest Green out of the cup.

Hayden scored the only goal of the game on 41 minutes as he got his head on a Nathan Thomas free-kick past keeper Adam Smith.

That broke the deadlock after a short spell of Carlisle pressure after Forest Green enjoyed the better of play in the opening half-hour, with Aaron Collins and Dayle Grubb having early shots and Junior Mondal and Kyle Taylor going closer midway through the half.

Head coach Mark Cooper, who made five changes from the team beaten 2-0 at home to Scunthorpe United, hooked Grubb at the break for Matt Mills.

Rovers huffed and puffed after the break as Carlisle stood firm to book a trip to Cardiff City in the new year.

Carlisle United: Collin, G Jones, Branthwaite, Webster, Hayden, Carroll, M Jones, Scougall, N Thomas, Hope, Loft.

Subs: Gray, Elliott, McKirdy, Olomola, Sagaf, Knight-Percival, Sorensen.

Forest Green: Smith, Shephard, Bernard, Rawson, Kitching, Taylor, Adams, Winchester, Mondal, Grubb, Collins.

Subs: L Thomas, M Mills, Stevens, Morton, Dawson, McGinley, Godwin-Malife.

Attendance: 1,736

FGR fans: 88

Next up: Forest Green return to league action with a trip to Northampton Town on Saturday, 3pm.