Workington Reds 4 Carlisle United 2: Danny Grainger’s Workington got the better of his former club Carlisle to progress to the Fred Conway Cumberland Cup semi-finals.

On a night the Blues fielded several pros – including fit-again duo Ryan Edmondson and Ben Barclay – Grainger’s Reds twice came from behind to seal a last-four tie against holders Carlisle City.

Edmondson shot United ahead before the impressive Obua Hashim Mugalula levelled for Reds.

Mason Hardy and Steven Rigg then traded goals before, after the break, sub Reuben Jerome and Lewis Reilly punished a young United defence for Workington.

There were pluses for Carlisle in the returns of Edmondson and Barclay, who both played for an hour, while Josh Dixon made his first sub appearance on his return from long-term injury as the Blues also included senior players Jayden Harris, Jack Robinson and Michael Kelly.

But it was Workington’s night, former Bolton prospect Magalula the star in front of a 603 county cup crowd and Rigg also impressing against his former club.

Edmondson was in the Carlisle line-up having been out since December with a shoulder injury – while defender Barclay got a start on his return from a more recent calf problem.

Workington’s line-up, meanwhile, included Ben Hughes for the first time since suffering an injury last summer, with Sam Smith able to be involved despite serving a league suspension.

United’s Kai Nugent started against his loan club, while Reds’ Charlie Birch faced a visiting team coached by his father Mark. Another former Carlisle man in the home ranks, Dav Symington, received a presentation before the game marking 200 appearances for Workington.

With Carlisle boss Paul Simpson watching on from the stand, Workington made the brighter start and could have gone ahead when Matty Clarke picked out Keelan Leslie in space, but Kelly saved his header.

A potent spell from United then saw them in front on 12 minutes – and it was a welcome return in front of goal for fit-again Edmondson, who ran onto a good Hardy header on halfway, cut in from the right and beat keeper Danny Eccles with a measured low shot with the outside of his right foot.

READ MORE: Workington Reds 4-2 Carlisle United - as it happened

United could have added to their lead, Nic Bollado having a shot blocked and Eccles later doing well to keep out an Edmondson save.

But Workington grew again into an end-to-end game, Kelly saving a Reilly free-kick, Rigg having a headed goal disallowed, a Leslie cross cleared off the line – and then Mugalula levelling impressively.

He brought the ball down outside the box, turned and stunned Kelly with a superb dipping shot.

Carlisle, though, responded by re-taking the lead two minutes later, youth team forward Hardy getting beyond the Reds defence down the left before shooting across Eccles.

Yet it was then Workington’s turn to hit back, and a third goal in five minutes came through a terrific attempt by Rigg, after he robbed Nugent just outside the Carlisle box.

Mugalula remained a lively threat on the left for the hosts and after he was denied by Kelly, another Rigg pearler hit the post late in an eventful first half.

After the break, with Jerome on at the break for Reds, a more experienced Workington forced the early pace, with Smith just failing to connect properly with a free header from a corner.

Mugalula then pounced on a Gordon attempted backpass and Carlisle were grateful to Barclay for his timely sliding block.

That was the defender’s last involvement of note, both Barclay and Edmondson substituted after 60 minutes and seemingly unscathed after their comeback appearances.

On went youngsters Josh O’Brien and Romeo Park for United, Bobby Carroll having replaced Hughes for the hosts – and it was Workington who were next to strike.

Inevitably it was Mugalula at the heart of things again, leaving Gordon behind as he cut in from the left, and his cross found Jerome between Carlisle’s defenders as he volleyed home from close range.

United’s attempted response saw Hardy denied by Eccles, before Josh Dixon made his highly welcome return as a 75th-minute substitute, Allan replaced.

The Blues forced another big chance but Bollado shot wide – and then Workington went up the other end and made it 4-2, Reilly pouncing to finish low past Kelly after United’s young defence failed to deal with a ball in from the left.

Carlisle were unable to respond and Reds went through to the semis.

Reds: Eccles, Clarke, Birch, Smith, Leslie, Farmer (McCaragher 79), Hughes (Jerome 46), Hubbold (Carroll 59), Reilly, Rigg, Mugalula. Not used: Symington, Atkinson.

Goals: Magalula 28, Rigg 33, Jerome 67, Reilly 80.

United: Kelly, H Gordon, Robinson, Harris, Bell, Barclay (O’Brien 60), Allan (Dixon 75), Nugent, Edmondson (Park 60), Hardy, Bollado. Not used: Hetherington, Breeze.

Goals: Edmondson 12, Hardy 30.

Ref: Kevin Mulraine.

Crowd: 603.