Mattishall lift Norfolk Senior Cup
Mattishall 1, Norwich United 1 (Matishall win 5-4 on penaltes)Mattishall edged a thrilling Carrow Road penalty shoot-out last night to lift the Norfolk Senior Cup.
Mattishall 1, Norwich United 1 (Matishall win 5-4 on penaltes)
Mattishall edged a thrilling Carrow Road penalty shoot-out last night to lift the Norfolk Senior Cup.
The Anglian Combination underdogs claimed their third Ridgeons League scalp in dramatic fashion to cap a memorable giant killing run in this season's competition.
Planters' skipper Darren Coe dragged his penalty wide at the Barclay End after six perfect spot kicks before Ben Lewis and Andrew Fulcher kept their nerve. Mattishall skipper Jimmy Lovell lifted the magnificent trophy in front of the club's travelling support to seal a fairytale return to action for the centre back.
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Lovell dislocated his shoulder in the semi final win over neighbours Dereham but battled back to fitness to lead his men to victory in the biggest night in the club's history.
Mattishall's captain had earlier drawn the blue and whites level in normal time on 76 minutes when United keeper Ben Nower fumbled his hanging free kick.
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The Planters looked to be closing in on a maiden cup success at the fifth attempt when Jordan Blyth rifled them ahead on 52 minutes before Paul Chick's side were reduced to ten men when Paul Atkins was red carded with ten minutes left in normal time.
The showpiece final began in feisty fashion when Mattishall's spiky frontman Jason Cole left an early calling card on Nower - but referee George quickly diffused the potential flashpoint.
Mattishall midfielder Daniel Palmer lashed the first chance into the Barclay from 25 yards before towering team mate Simon Wooden headed over Lewis' hanging cross.
The waspish Cole pounced on indecision in the United backline to race onto Palmer's raking cross field ball but Nower palmed away his angled strike at the near post.
Wooden's fresh air shot on 24 minutes left the Mattishall man thrusting hands to his head then Cole was inches from connecting with Lewis' header back as Mattishall continued to dominate.
United's Steve Shipley spurned the Planters' best chance of the half when his close range header from Lee Hunter's inviting corner flew a couple of yards over George Pledger's bar.
Hill's brave near post block foiled Andrew Claydon minutes before the break after the United striker escaped the Mattishall backline.
Blyth broke the deadlock on the restart when he latched onto Lee Hunter's cut back to calmly slot left footed past the grounded Pledger from 12 yards.
Fulcher's last ditch tackle robbed Atkins after the pacy Hunter had again escaped down the right to evade Pledger in a leg race.
Claydon's glancing header flew a yard wide of Pledger's left hand upright with the Planters now enjoying their best spell of the final.
Cole wasted a golden opportunity to drag the Anglian Combination side level on 58 minutes when he raced clear but struck the side netting with only Nower to beat following Wooden's cute first time flick.
Pledger and Hill then combined to deny Claydon from inside the six yard box after the rangy frontman slalomed his way past three Mattishall markers.
Skipper Lovell equalised in bizarre circumstances when Nower spilled his deep free kick wide on the left before Atkins was shown a straight red after a full-blooded challenge on Tim Hill left the Mattishall full back needing treatment to a right ankle injury.
Jake Anema went close to winning it for the underdogs in the final seconds of normal time when his 12-yard volley cannoned away for a corner.
Nower kept his side level two minutes into extra time when he beat away Luke Catchpole's flashing header from another probing Lovell delivery. Pledger went full length to claw away Ricci Butler's skidding long range effort for the ten men. Nower was again called into action at the start of the second period with a one-handed parry to claw out Duncan Hewitt's curler from the edge of the box.
Chris Squires' piledriver clipped Anema with both sides desperate to avoid a penalty lottery in the closing stages. Andrew Fulcher cynically dragged down Claydon in the last act of extra time but Hunter's 25 yard free kick flew into the empty seats to set up a thrilling spot-kick finale.
Mattishall: Pledger, Hill, Anema, Lovell, Fulcher, Hewitt, Lewis, Palmer, Cole (Connelly 98), Wooden (Sommerfield 98), Hall (Catchpole 38). Subs (not used): Harbour, Stenner.
Bookings: Wooden, Catchpole, Fulcher
Goal: Lovell (76)
Norwich United: Nower, McCabe, Furlong, Coe, Wilson, Shipley, Hunter, Squires, Claydon, Blyth (Butler 84), Atkins. Subs (not used): Jeal, Bugdale, Cook, Thornton.
Bookings: Squires, Claydon
Sending off: Atkins
Goal: Blyth (52)
Penalties (Misses in bold)
Norwich United: Hunter, Claydon, Butler, Coe, Shipley
Mattishall: Connelly, Sommerfield, Catchpole, Lewis, Fulcher
Referee: M George