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Oh Brother.....Keeper Jamie's spot kick heroics see off Sibling Sean's Saints

Wednesday, 11 December 2019 18:57

HUNTINGDONSHIRE FA SENIOR CUP QUARTER FINAL

 

St Neots Town        3        Eynesbury Rovers     3

(Eynesbury won 4-1 on penalties)          

 

Three old boys came back to haunt St Neots as they were despatched out of the Hunts Senior Cup at the quarter final stage by neighbours Eynesbury Rovers.   Hero of the hour was goalkeeper Jamie Greygoose (2014/15) – brother of the St Neots Assistant Manager – who saved the first two penalty kicks in the shootout, Jordan Brown (2018/19) who scored Rovers’ second goal to put them in initial second half control, and Rukky Djemoah (U18 side 2013/14) who slotted home the deciding fourth Rovers penalty, also in the shootout.   St Neots must justifiably thought they had turned the game around coming from 3-1 down with 18 minutes remaining to earn the sudden death decider but their inability to beat the visiting keeper from the spot proved to be their downfall.   Rovers were delighted to avenge the defeat in their last Senior Cup visit to the Premier Plus Stadium when they had been thrashed 6-1 in the Senior Cup Final of 2017/18.   St Neots had to make two changes to the side that had lost at Halesowen because Tom Boxer and Joe Massaro were ineligible so back into the side came Aaron Smith with Sam Gomarsall slotting into the defence in an unfamiliar full back role. There was also a senior debut as a second half substitute for Reif Clarke, the leading scorer in the Saints U18 side.

The first half was largely a scrappy contest with neither side able to dominate play.   Rovers unsettled the St Neots defence with their long ball tactics and their threat at set pieces when the home defence failed to show aerial superiority and an inability to clear their lines, whilst the home side showed some neat approach work but little finish.   After a quarter an hour of not very threatening play Eynesbury won five corners in as many minutes and from the fifth, they took the lead.   With St Neots failing to clear Steve Gentle forced the ball home from close range in a goalmouth scramble after 21 minutes, but their advantage lasted just seven minutes before a scruffy goal at the other end brought parity as St Neots skipper Lee Watkins forced home a cross from the  left.   Eynesbury arguably then had the better of the final fifteen minutes of the half with Gentle finding the net again but penalised for a push, Daniels linking well with his attack for Jordan Brown to squander a good chance and Williams setting up Gentle for a close range effort that James Philp saved well.

The second half seemed to be very tightly fought until Eynesbury scored twice in as many minutes around the hour.   Looking suspiciously offside Jordan Brown outstripped the St Neots defence to finish confidently to reinstate Rovers’ advantage and before St Neots had time to recover Stevan Shaw upended Brown to concede a penalty, confidently dispatched by Ashley Fuller.   At 3-1 down St Neots needed to review their approach so they took off a defender and introduced Reif Clarke up from and Ben Stokes as an additional attacking midfielder and their rethink quickly paid dividends.  After 72 minutes Joe Sutton wove his way past two defenders to be brought down by a third and from the resultant penalty award Alan Musoke reduced the arrears.   Rovers seemed to opt to sit on their single goal advantage soaking up pressure from the home side but with eight minutes left St Neots introduced Prince Mutswunguma as their final substitute and with his first significant involvement he crossed the ball into the heart of the Rovers defence and the ball went in off a defender to send the match into the penalties decider.

Greygoose saved the first two St Neots kicks from Musoke and skipper Watkins – St Neots two scorers in the ninety minutes – and although Ben Bradley netted their third attempt successful conversions by Gentle, Jamie Cole, Fuller and Djemoah put Eynesbury in the Semi-Final.

St Neots: Philp, Gomersal, Smith, Butler, Shaw, Goode, Watkins, Bradley,  Musoke, Foster, Sutton

Subs:  Stokes (for Foster 66 mins), Clarke (for Shaw 67 mins), Mutswunguma (for Sutton 82 mins), Badiani and Hudson

Cards:  Butler (Y – 9 mins)

Goals:  Watkins (28 mins), Musoke – pen (72 mins), OG (86 mins)

Penalty: Bradley

 

Eynesbury:  Greygoose, Clark, Fuller, Daniels, Duckett (J), Utteridge, Lewis, Duckett (R), Gentle, Brown, Williams

Subs:  Djemoah (for Williams 53 mins), Cole (for Daniels 62 mins), Sinclair, Jarrold and Duckett (M).

Goals:  Gentle (21 mins), Brown (60 mins), Fuller – pen (62 mins)

Penalties: Gentle, Cole, Fuller and Djemoah.

 

Referee:  Ashley List (Papworth)

Attendance:       114

 

John Walker

 

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