Reffley Youth First Winners of the Stuart Dracup Cup

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Stuart Dracup Cup Final 2015
Stuart Dracup Cup Final 2015
Stuart Dracup Cup Final 2015
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Reffley Youth were the first side to win the Stuart Dracup Cup Friday evening when they ran out 2-0 winners over Firside Athletic.

The competition, previously known as the Minor Cup, was renamed this year after the sad passing of former Life Vice President Stuart Dracup in March 2014.

The game had action from the very beginning with a goal in the third minute. Ryan English picked up the ball 25 yards out and fired a long lofted shot, which Firside’s goalkeeper Jake Harvey managed to grab hold of.

Unfortunately for the young keeper, upon landing the ball spilled from his grip and bounced into the net, allowing Reffley to take the lead.

The game seemed pretty even for the next spell, but it was Reffley who were able to double their advantage on the 16th minute. The loft was the undoing of the Firside keeper once again, when Daniel Arnold clipped in a great shot from just outside the area.

It wasn’t until being 2-0 down that Firside started to get a grip on the game, allowing their midfield to get on the ball and create openings. Jak Greenwood was particularly bright on the right hand side and played a big part in the chances his side created.

Reffley always looked dangerous on the counter however, and it took a great reaction save from Harvey to stop his team going into half time with a mountain to climb in the second half.

The second half was a different game, with Firside seemingly more alert and more dominant in possession. Reffley were quite content to sit further back and pose a threat on the counter, which Firside had no choice but to be aware of.

This was proved right when early in the second half English found himself through on goal once again, however Harvey who was determined to make up for the first half made an outstanding diving save to keep his team in the game.

Firside dominated most of the following 15 with Kyle Richardson heading just over. The team looked comfortable on the ball, in particular Owen Murphy who was pulling the strings in the centre of the park, the team just lacked a final pass or shot.

That threat from Reffley remained with the energetic Charlie Edgeley twisting and turning defenders whenever he got the ball. A clever run meant he found himself through on goal, only for Firside’s centre back Joshua Ford to sprint back and make a perfect last ditch tackle.

A few moments later they had the chance to put the game out of reach when Connor Joyce met a header perfectly only for Harvey to produce the save of the match and somehow push the ball over the ball from point blank range.

The remainder of the game was Firside’s, the team pushed and pushed for a goal and Reffley were content to sit and absorb their attacks.

They created chance after chance but could not find the back of the net. Credit must go to the Reffley back line and goalkeeper who remained resilient throughout and always looked composed under pressure.

The Referee signalled for stoppage time which saw Reffley keep the ball in the corner and play out the final minutes to take the trophy home.  

Final Score: Reffley Youth 2 - 0 Firside Athletic

Line ups:

Reffley Youth: Lewis Herbert, Kai Wysoczanski, Jay Sansom, Connor Joyce, John Ellis, Kieron Wingfield (C), Daniel Arnold, Eddie McGharen, Charlie Dungey, Ryan English & Ryan Kilvington.

Subs: Harry Fysh, Charlie Edgeley, Ryan Bateson.

 

Firside Athletic: Jake Harvey, Connor Smith, Ray Urry, Henry Metcalf, Joshua Ford, Jak Greenwood, Kyle Richardson, Owen Murphy, Rhys Manley, Aiden Oliver & Lennon Collier (C).

Subs: Charlie Wright, Tinashe Katsande, Harry Brookes.

 

Referee: Warren Skoulding        

Assistants: Tom Harvey & Ryan Barnes

Fourth Official: Murray Grant

Player of the Match: Connor Joyce

 

 

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