Greens lead but lose final
Ridgeons League Cup finalGorleston 1, Needham Market 2THE Greens gave an excellent performance at Diss on Monday against Premier Ridgeons League side Needham Market, who had finished as runners-up and FA Vase semi-finalists this season.
Ridgeons League Cup final
Gorleston 1, Needham Market 2
THE Greens gave an excellent performance at Diss on Monday against Premier Ridgeons League side Needham Market, who had finished as runners-up and FA Vase semi-finalists this season. Gorleston led after 10 minutes
For this important game Gorleston lined up in a 4-4-2 formation which at times became 4-2-4 as their two wide players John Bell and Ricci Butler attacked at every opportunity, writes Mick Heard.
Needham had the better of the early play and put considerable pressure on the Gorleston defence, who coped admirably. Keeper Tom Marsden acrobatically foiled Needham midfield player Rhys Barber after experienced striker Glen Snell had headed over from close range.
As the early pressure on the Gorleston goal continued John Bell kicked Needham captain Mark Bailey's header off the line.
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Gorleston's back four of Kyle Howell, Eddie Thompson, Adam Thurtle and Jack Marsden all showed their defensive qualities and gradually started to restrict the danger caused by the quick Needham forwards and began to build attacks from the back.
After 10 minutes Gorleston took the lead when midfield player Richie Fruin broke on the left and his inch-perfect cross was headed in by fellow midfield player Peter Lambert from close-range.
Needham were shocked and play for the remainder of the first half was more even, with Gorleston strikers Nathan Thompson and Gary Ingram making numerous runs and being well supported by Ricci Butler and John Bell on the flanks.
As their attacking moves increased Jack Marsden came close to scoring the second goal when he made tracks down the left and sent a shot in which seemed bound to go in by the far post, only for Needham keeper Liam Jones to push the ball away for a corner.
As the second half got underway it was evident that the Needham team were becoming concerned as Gorleston still dealt with all their attempts to even the score.
After 58 minutes the Gorleston defence failed to clear and Glenn Snell fired the equaliser in from 10 yards.
Both sides then went all out to score the winner. Ricci Butler sent in a superb curler which had keeper Jones scrambling across his penalty box. Soon after Peter Lambert worked his way through the Needham defence but drove his shot straight at the keeper.
Needham won the match when left-winger Daniel Thrower, who was voted man of the match, took a corner on the right which totally deceived the Gorleston defence and the ball went in at the near post.
Gorleston tried to save the match, with substitutes Gary Todd, Matty Bowls and Mitch Forbes coming on.
As Gorleston threw men forward Needham broke quickly and Tom Marsden made a tremendous save to push Thrower's angled strike against the bar.
Gorleston: T Marsden, K Howell, J Marsden, J Bell, A Thurtle, E Thompson, R Butler, P Lambert, G Ingram, N Thompson, R Fruin. Subs: G Todd, M Bowles, M Forbes, not used: L Goreham, B Gillies.
Peter Lambert and Scott Butler were presented with their respective trophies for Supporters' Players of the Year for first team and reserves at Diss.
Thanks went to the staff at the Cliff Hotel, Gorleston, for sponsoring the pre-match breakfasts for players and committee at the hotel on Monday morning.