U9A Reach Premier League Cup Final
HORSLEY U9A 1; WOLVES U9A 1 (aet) - Horsley win on penalties
The semi final brought together the two strongest teams in the U9 Premier League. Wolves had come to Horsley earlier in the season and though Horsley had won neither team had deserved to lose. This sentiment would again prove to be the case today.
The game started with Wolves on top and their centre forward dominating proceedings. His first touch was imaculate and his ability to bring other players into the game first class. Aaron Owen the Horsley keeper was called into action early and as usual was not found wanting.
Horsley's midfield consisting at various times of Mark Purves, Dominic Clark, Paul Dewy, Hector Platt and Orlando Anker battled hard against a resilient Wolves midfield. If a breakthrough was to come for Horsley it felt like Orlando might be the architect, but it was not to be.
Early in the second half the Wolves danger man latched onto a pass and shot early across goal, beating Aaron at his far post to take the lead. This was disappointing but not concerning as the boys have come back from a goal down many times this season. No reason at this stage to think they couldn't do the same again. The alternating Horsley forwards of Toby Hernandez and George Sellick both came close. However it was the home sides keeper that was the busiest.
Orlando again started to pose problems for Wolves and from another "jinky" run was pulled down in the area for a clear penalty. After offering the ball to his team-mates, (not) he duly lashed the ball home to make it 1-1, and game on!
Clear chances were few and far between for Horsley after equalising although Wolves came close. Harry Mead and Ethan Salter started to get a handle on the Wolves forwards and normal time ended 1-1.
Extra time came and went without noteable chances so it was penalty shoot-out time.
The first 5 penalties for each side were taken and still it was all square at 3-3. Then in sudden death Horsley missed and Wolves had a chance to win..... they missed too!
Next up stepped the not very well known penalty taker, Horsley keeper, Aaron Owen. If truth be told the coach had little confidence. In 7,843 penatly attempts in the back garden this reporter has never seen him score. Oh ye of little faith....the ball was deposited neatly in the corner of the net.
With the roles reversed it was the Wolves keeper who was next to take a spot kick, he missed and Horsley had won.
Commiserations to Wolves, a cracking team who we will meet again this season in the league. They are worthy opponents in every respect and we look forward to that match.
Nontheless it was a great effort by Horsley and just reward for a good season so far. The final will be played at Coulsdon in May and this group of boys have the ability to win the final - and dare we say it - perhaps even a league & cup double!!
Well done to manager Kieran Salter and his team!!