North Ferriby United: 1. Adam Nicklin, 2. Steve Gardner, 3. Nathan Peat, 4. Danny Clarke, 5. Gregg Anderson, 6. Paul Foot ©, 7. Wayne Brooksby, 8. Russell Fry, 9. Timothy Taylor, 10. Gary Bradshaw, 11. Chris Bolder. Subs: 12. Sam Belcher, 14. Sam Denton, 15. James Williams (Gardner 70), 16. Louis Lirk, 17. Steve Wilson.
Rushall Olympic: 13. Chris Gemmell, 2. Mitchell Tolley, 3. Jonny Haynes, 4. Lucan Spittle ©, 5. Decio Gomes, 6. Nick Amos, 7. Ahmed Obeng, 8. Grant Beckett, 9. Kyle Brady, 10. Alex Melbourne, 11, Luke Bottomer. Subs: 12. Martyn Naylor (Tolley 98), 14. James Skedgel, 16. Alex Forde, 17. Gary Fitzpatrick (Melbourne 64), 18. Danny Campbell (Brady 86).
Referee: Mr. G. Hilton
The gloss was well and truly taken off Rushall Olympic’s fine end to the Evo-Stik League Premier Division campaign as they crashed to a heavy extra-time defeat at the hands of rivals North Ferriby United in the final of the Doodson Sport Cup at Eastwood Town FC.
In truth the Pics were second best for the majority of the game and the deserved victors really should have wrapped up their trophy success in normal time, however three goals in a devastating 16 minute spell of extra-time meant the Villagers’ ultimately won at a canter.
Despite the final score line Rushall made a good start to proceedings as they forced three flag kicks in the opening three minutes.
In the seventh minute a great ball over the top of the United defence sent Ahmed Obeng racing in to space, but with the unmarked Kyle Brady wide open to his right as a pair of defenders were drawn inside, his initial effort was saved by ‘keeper Adam Nicklin and the loose ball was ultimately shepherded out for a goal kick.
As play moved swiftly to the other end Nick Amos executed a great tackle just inside the box to stop Gary Bradshaw in his tracks, but the challenge still yielded an extremely hopeful penalty appeal from the North Ferriby contingent.
With the East Yorkshire outfit beginning to enjoy an increasing amount of openings as the first half continued, on 17 minutes Russell Fry sent a solid rising drive just shy of the top left corner from 25 yards out as Olympic’s defence opened up all too easily.
Five minutes later the Villagers were again on the offensive as Danny Clarke ghosted past Decio Gomes, before turning and firing in a low effort that Chris Gemmell safely gathered.
In the 26th minute a foul challenge from Tolley conceded a free-kick in United’s favour that Fry curled straight into the waiting arms of Gemmell
Two minutes after the half hour mark Olympic were finally able to mount a response as Brady curled the ball ambitiously, but ultimately well wide and high of the top left corner from 25 yards out.
A great through ball from Luke Bottomer on 35 minutes sent Obeng racing clear of his marker and despite the front runner appearing well off-side play was allowed to continue. As Nicklin advanced off his line to narrow the angle Obeng attempted to lift the ball over his adversary but failed to get enough height, allowing the custodian to block the effort and mop up the danger. All this despite Alex Melbourne being in acres of space at the right face of the box screaming for a pass.
Nine minutes prior to the interval and United threatened again as Fry’s corner from the left found its way through to Tim Taylor some 25 yards out through the right channel who unleashed a venomous first time drive that went marginally over the woodwork.
On 41 minutes only the brilliance of Gemmell kept Rushall’s goal intact as he produced a fingertip save to push the unmarked Bradshaw’s flying header out for a corner after meeting a centre from the right towards the edge of the box.
Half-Time: North Ferriby United 0-0 Rushall Olympic
Any notion the Pics had of improving on their first half showing were quickly dispelled when ten minutes following the restart a dangerous free-kick played in by Bradshaw from the right appeared to cause havoc within Olympic’s defensive ranks. However, there was some relief as Clarke ended up stabbing the ball wide of the left hand post when well placed.
Six minutes later and as the Villagers’ Chris Bolder worked his way into the left side of the box, under pressure from Lucan Spittle the midfielder ultimately drove well wide of the left hand upright.
Although Olympic were clearly firing on only a limited number of cylinders, in the 63rd minute a long through ball from Jonny Haynes caused some panic within the North Ferriby defence as Brady was able to get a shot off on the spin that Nicklin was forced to save.
Eight minutes later and Nicklin had to tip Tolley’s looping high ball over his crossbar to concede a corner as it dropped dangerously down towards his goal line.
On 74 minutes Bottomer cut inside from the left channel and along the by-line before firing low towards the near post with the United custodian doing well to quickly get down to make a block.
The game finally burst into life in the 75th minute when Brooksby broke through the middle, but as Tolley attempted to make a last ditch tackle he only succeeded in hauling down his opponent. After being prompted by an assistant the referee then had no hesitation in pointing straight to the penalty spot. FRY was given the responsibility for the conversion attempt and from the 12-yard mark the midfielder clinically dispatched the ball into the bottom left corner, sending Gemmell the wrong way in the process.
With things looking grim for Olympic they were handed an immediate lifeline when straight from the restart Bottomer made inroads into the right side of the Villagers’ box with his run being unceremoniously ended by an opponent to yield another penalty kick. As TOLLEY placed ball on the spot the defender drilled a consummate finish into the right side of goal beyond the reach of Nicklin to restore parity.
With eight minutes remaining a spectacular bicycle kick from Rushall’s Brady 12 yards out went well over after the striker latched on to a useful looking centre from the right.
Right on the stroke of full time and Pics player-assistant manager Nick Amos sustained a nasty looking facial cut that required attention after being caught by a flailing elbow. Fortunately he was able to return to the fray bandaged up as extra-time commenced.
Full-Time: North Ferriby United 1-1 Rushall Olympic
In the first minute of extra-time North Ferriby went straight for the jugular as they carved their way into the Pics box and only a brilliant save from Gemmell prevented Clarke from netting as the custodian stood up extremely well to parry away.
Sadly Olympic failed to heed their stark warning and in the 92nd minute some shambolic defending proved to be their downfall as United were again given the freedom of Coronation Park to enter the penalty area. Despite Gemmell single handedly attempting to prevent the onslaught he could do little to stop TAYLOR from slotting the loose ball into the bottom left corner from 10 yards.
Things went decidedly from bad to worse for Rushall just five minutes from the restart when they found themselves an unsalvageable two goals adrift as a corner from the left was palmed away by Gemmell. Unfortunately his colleagues failed to react to the loose ball and GREGG ANDERSON stabbed in unhindered from close range.
There was some respite for the Pics in the 99th minute when a free-kick from Haynes had to be tipped over by ‘keeper Nicklin, who had been fortunate to remain on the pitch after racing out of his box to poleaxe substitute Danny Campbell to yield the set-piece in the first instance.
The second period of extra-time was only four minutes old when North Ferriby increased their superiority by claiming a fourth decisive goal. More shocking defending saw substitute Martyn Naylor play the ball straight to Bradshaw who had the easiest of tasks to lay a pass off to BOLDER who rifled powerfully inside the right hand post beyond the unfortunate Gemmell.
It could have been far worse for badly misfiring Olympic when with a minute remaining they once more needlessly lost possession and as Brooksby countered from well in his own half through the left channel past Bottomer and then last-man Spittle, only yet another superlative save from Gemmell pushed the midfielders pacey drive around his left hand post to concede a corner.
All in all Rushall were simply not good enough on the day with far too many of their playing contingent having an off-day as part one of the Pics end of season cup final trilogy got off to the worse possible start.
After Extra-Time: North Ferriby United 4-1 Rushall Olympic