Rangers victory is all the more sweet
Acle Rangers are celebrating their first Evening News and Copy IT Norwich Sunday League Cup success after a 1-0 win over Dog House in the final at Wroxham.
The match was always going to be a tight affair, with Dog House eager to complete a cup double having already won the Norfolk Sunday Senior Cup at Carrow Road earlier in the campaign.
The game was decided by a solitary strike from Acle forward Ramsay Gashut, who struck in the 20th minute with his 14th goal in his debut season for the club.
Acle were well worth their early lead, having dominated proceedings early on, and were perhaps unfortunate to have not held a more emphatic lead at the break, with the pace of Gashut, in particular, causing problems for the Dog House back-line.
The second half saw a much improved performance from the County Senior Cup winners, but the Acle defence held firm to deny their challengers and seal a narrow yet deserved win.
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Acle Rangers manager Richard Westgate was delighted with his players following the historic victory, he said: “Dog House are a very good side - make no mistake about that - so to play well and beat them in the final is very pleasing.
“You’re never confident at 1-0, and I felt we should have been further ahead at half-time as we had a number of chances. We expected Dog House to improve in the second-half, but we defended magnificently to hold on for the win.”
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The victory represented a reversal of fortune in the competition for Acle, who suffered a extra-time final defeat to The Grove last year. It was the memories of such a defeat that inspired Rangers this time around, as Westgate explained: “Losing in the final last season spurred us on and makes the victory extra sweet. The majority of the squad played last year, and were determined not be on the losing side again.”
Westgate also outlined his determination for the club to build on the League Cup success, saying: “I’ve been the manager here for four years now, and we’re improving every year. We finished fourth in the league after spending the majority of the season in the top two, so our eventual aim is to reach the Premier and play at Carrow Road in the County Cup Final. That’s what we’re building towards.”
The ambition is clear, but for now Acle Rangers can bask in the joy of lifting the prestigious trophy for the first time in their 38-year history.