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Norwich United win 2018 Senior Cup

Norwich United won the Norfolk Senior Cup for the first time in their history last night, after beating Downham Town 4-2 in extra time at Carrow Road. 
Photography credit: Oliver Harrison

Norwich United were victorious at Carrow Road last night, winning the Norfolk Senior Cup 4-2 in extra time at the expense of Downham Town 

Underdogs Downham, who play two levels lower than the Planters, took the lead in just the third minute after Matt Bussens’ back-heel was cleared off the line, only for top scorer Ben Baxter-Hunt to sweep the loose ball into the net.

Shaun Wones headed just wide as Norwich responded well and took control of proceedings, with Nathan Stewart their driving force, with Wones heading down his free-kick from the right in the ninth minute and Sam Watts firing over from close range,

Downham keeper Matt Capes superbly tipped a deflected Stewart shot around his post in the 21st minute, who soon after teed up Sonny Carey, who could only fire against the keeper’s legs from 15 yards.

However, Carey took centre stage with two goals in four minutes to send Norwich into the break with a deserved lead. The first came from fine play on the right from Stewart, whose cross was flicked on by striker Liam Jackson to allow Carey to bundle in at the back post in the 40th minute. Stewart’s lovely back-heel then played Carey into the box and the midfielder finished calmly into the bottom-left corner to turn the game around.

Norwich keeper Andy Wilton made a superb diving save to deny Bussens in the 65th minute as Downham rallied, with Simon Bird bringing them level in style four minutes later, lashing a low shot home from 20 yards.

That was enough to take the game to extra-time, when the final was settled in superb style after 13 minutes. Town defender Pat Yates was booked for bringing down Stewart and the Planters livewire dusted himself down to bend a fine free-kick into the top-left corner off the underside of the bar from 25 yards.

Yates earned his second yellow soon after for bringing down Stewart, before the attacker teed up Jackson in the 111th minute to make sure of the win and ease the disappointment of dropping back into the Eastern Counties League.

Thank you to local Architects Chaplin Farrant for being the official Player of the Match & match ball sponsor of this year's Norfolk Senior Cup Final. 


Line ups

Downham: Capes; Sykes (C), Pritchard, Yates; Cross (Gould 78), Dougal (Tansley 106), Hunt (Calvert 51), Bird, Oughton; Bussens, Baxter-Hunt. Unused subs: Jardine, Willmott

Norwich United: Wilton; Applegate, Wones (C), Watts, Rose (Brown 73); Jones, Mackie (Probert 63); Stewart, Carey (Pollock 72), Hipperson; Jackson. Unused subs: Mokake, Johnson

Attendance: 787

Player of the Match sponsored by Chaplin Farrant: Nathan Stewart

Match report by David Freezer (EDP) you can see a gallery of EDP photographer Ian Burt’s photos from the final here.