Cup Success For Winsford United

Fri 26th April 2013 | Winsford United
By Ian Templeman

A dramatic late extra time winner clinched victory for Winsford United over old rivals Northwich Victoria in the final of the Mid-Cheshire Cup.

After going a goal down just after half time, Andy Keogh equalised for the Blues to take the game into extra time, and the same player became the match winner with almost the last kick of the game deep into extra time.

It was a nervous first 45 minutes for Blues, which the visitors took advantage of and they had the better of the few chances in the half. Andy Jones was called into action early on when he had to palm over a header from Kevin Leadbetter, and a couple of minutes later there was the first of three penalty shouts for Winsford during the game, the whole team shouted for hand ball when Ricky Mercer stopped a goal bound shot with his outstretched elbow but the referee turned it down.

Andy Hurst had a glorious chance just before the break, with only the keeper to beat, he hit ball straight at the Vics custodian who gratefully held on to it, but straight after the restart, Blues were caught napping.

Brian Summerskill hit the ball over the top, it was collected by Alex Taylor and he slid the ball past Jones to give Vics the lead.

Winsford came back with a blistering run down the wing by Brian Matthews, but his cross sailed over the waiting forwards in the box.

Another scintillating move between Matthews and Hurst resulted in a shot from John Bennett going just wide of the upright.

In the 66th minute, manager Lloyd Morrison played his masterstroke and brought on Wayne Welbeck. Welbeck changed the course of the game with his pace and power, and combining with Andy Keogh they began to bully the visitors and take control of the game.

It was Keogh who grabbed the headlines with the equalizing goal on 77 minutes, smashing it past Steve Dickenson after Welbeck had forced his way to the by-line.

At this time, Winsford had taken control of the game but were unable to finish it off before the whistle went on 90 minutes.

Charlie Weir and Brian Matthews, having run themselves to a standstill, were replaced by Callam Gardner and Danny Egan to add fresh legs to the attack, and with just minutes to go in the 2nd period of extra time, Wayne Welbeck was brought down in the box for what looked like yet another stone wall penalty, but the referee waved play on.

But Vics respite was only temporary, as the winner arrived moments later. Welbeck never gave the Vics defence a second’s peace, and after Kevin Leadbetter brought him down to concede a free kick, he received a second yellow card and was sent from the field of play.

The resulting free kick ended with Welbeck’s shot rebounding off the post and Andy Keogh was the first to react, getting his second goal of the game and more importantly the winning goal, as the referee blew for full time just after the restart.

Winsford United Assistant Secretary Steve Wright said: “This may not have been the FA Cup Final, but beating Northwich Vics in any competition is always something to be celebrated, especially at Barton Stadium.

“The excitement was all too much for the Blues young fans who ran on to the pitch to celebrate. They were soon calmed down though and the presentation of the medals and trophies took place just in front of the main stand.

“That’s the silverware in the bag, let’s see what we can do about the league title!”

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