Raunds Town was the neutral venue for the 2019 KitmanUK UCL Knock Out Cup Final verses Holbeach United. The pitch was in excellent condition for the final match of the season and despite the threat of rain, it remained dry throughout the day.
Other than long term injury victims, Arron Parkinson has a full-strength squad to choose from which made selecting his starting line up all the harder.
After a cagy start to the match, Town’s first real spell of pressure led to the opening goal. Confue’s chip into the box was just cleared by the keeper Ricky Drury back to Confue who tried his luck from 25 yards out. The stopper managed to get across goal to push the shot around the post. From the resultant corner in the 8th minute, the ball was only partially cleared out to Joe Merrill on the right. His ball back into the box was met perfectly by head of in-form striker, KIERAN FITZGERALD and gave the keeper no chance.
Town faced a set back on 22 minutes when Top Scorer and Supporters Player of the Season Luke Emery went down with an ankle injury. After returning back on to the pitch, the striker went down again and was replaced by Adam Creaney.
Town had looked fairly comfortable since taking the lead although the only real danger they created was a Creaney free kick which hit the wall and was eventually cleared.
Holbeach were awarded a penalty in the 33rd minute when the tricky William Bird was adjudged to have been brought down in the box by Dean Lukeman. Josh Ford made no mistake from 12 yards for the equaliser.
Town restored their lead just before halftime. Joe Merrill made a fine break down the right flank and his ball in caused chaos. Adam Creaney appeared to have forced the ball over the line and while the players appealed ADAM CONFUE followed up to remove all doubt. Supporters by the goal believe Creaney’s shot went over the line however it will be a brave man who takes away Confue’s goal.
Holbeach United 1 Daventry Town 2
Town shaded the first half however the second half certainly belonged to Town.
Phil Cassidy, twice, and Adam Creaney both had efforts just off target in the first 10 minutes as the Champions started brightly.
Some excellent defending from Captain Ross Harris and Rico Alexander and then a brave stop at the striker’s feet by Iustin Cerga prevented the tigers from snatching a second equaliser.
Town started to find gaps in the Holbeach defence. Taylor Orosz headed just wide of the post and shortly afterwards Drury denied him by pushing his shot around the right hand post.
Just two minutes later and the all important fourth goal went the way of Town via the penalty spot. A defender was adjudged to handle the ball in the box and ADAM CREANEY made no mistake to put Town 3 1 up.
Cerga made an excellent stop from substitute Kieran Hamilton shortly before the end.
Holbeach United 1 Daventry Town 3
Ross Harris and the team were presented with the trophy to go alongside that of the UCL Premier Division. Adam Confue also picked up the Man of the Match award
And so, a remarkable season for the Town comes to a end. No one at the club expected promotion with only minimal changes to the squad. An improvement on last year’s 10th place, braking into the top six would have been seen as a successful campaign. It was soon evident that Parky had built a team much better than that after putting 7 past least year’s league winners Yaxley in the FA Cup and then later when they put 6 past second placed Pinchbeck United at home and taking their 15 month unbeaten run off them. We all feared Rugby Town and their rumoured budget but Boxing Day’s fairly one sided affair erased that. Deeping Rangers put up a fantastic run and showed what a great team they are in the League Cup semi final however the damage was already done in the home league fixture when a Confue inspired Town won 4 1 at home.
The league’s top goal scorer and Supporter’s player of the Season, Luke Emery along with Taylor Orosz scored for fun early on but both also have brought out the best in a number of players such as Manager’s Player of the Season Adam Confue and Young Player of the Season Kieran Fitzgerald in particular. Captain and joint Player’s Player of the Season Ross Harris alongside “The Old Farts” Young Player of the Season Rico Alexander appear to get better every week and when anyone does get past them, the other joint winner of the players accolade, Iustin Cerga has commanded his box and produced some stunning saves. Dean Lukeman, Phil Cassidy and Tom McGowan give you 100% every week, if you went into battle, you’d want these boys by your side. Adam Creaney and Taylor’s brother Jordan caused harvoc for defences with their pace and silky skills and the passionate Dan Childs bleeds purple. The experienced Ollie Stanbridge along with Joe Merrill and Sam Jackson who came in later in the season and scored some cracking goals. Sam’s wonderful free kick at Pinchbeck securing the point needed for the title. Greg Anayiotos also changed games when coming off the bench such as Boston Town where he scored less than a minute after leaning the bench. Greg, Sam and Jake Dumbleton are players who have a great future in the game along with a number of promising prospects in Andy Emery’s Reserves.
The Club’s AGM will be held on May 9th at 7.30 at the clubhouse. Again, everyone is invited to attend.
Town are looking for local businesses to get involved with the club and help build on the success of the past three seasons. Our thanks go to Alpine Carpets who sponsored our recent home match v Rugby Town and have recently supplied and fitted a new carpet in the clubhouse. All funds raised by the club go back into the football club.
|Holbeach United FC||Loss|
|May 6, 2019||3:00 pm||Kitman League Cup||2019||90'|