Match report by Dean Allchin
The unlikely figure of Ashley Jarvis struck a 92nd minute winner to see United defeat Little Common 2-1 at The Oval.
With the game looking likely to be heading to a replay, it was the returning Jarvis who was the match winner as he burst from midfield to strike home into the roof of the net after Ollie Sotoyinbo has found time and space to cross from the left.
United handed debuts to full back Adil Salih and midfielder Kane Penn, with Salih coming only a posts width away from a dream start to his United career with an early free kick that rebounded off the bar.
Sotoyino also saw an effort denied by the upright as he weaved his way into the area from the right wing before unleashing an effort that hit the outside of the post before going out for a goal kick.
Common took the lead at the start of the second half after Phil Hawkins had produced a reaction save with his feet to deny Lewis Hole, but the ball eventually found its way to Harry Saville who curled home a superb 25 yard effort into the top corner that left Hawkins helpless.
Lady luck looked like it might have deserted United for the afternoon as the woodwork was struck for the third time, with Penn the man denied.
United's luck changed with fifteen minutes to play as the impressive Penn took control of the ball one the edge of the area and fired the ball low past Matt Cruttwell to draw United level.
Almost immediately, Common attacked and it was their turn to be denied by the woodwork as Jared Lusted's effort smashed back off the bar and away from danger.
But, with time running out, there proved to be time for one more chance and United took full advantage as Jarvis struck to seal a place in the Emirates FA Cup Preliminary Round.
United will be away to either Chatham Town or Littlehampton Town, who meet in a replay on Wednesday night, in the Preliminary Round on Saturday 19 August.
Photo courtesy: Eastbourne United AFC