West Midland Regional League
Birmingham County FA
Floodlit Cup Final
Saturday 23rd April 2018
Atherstone Town 3-3 Tividale
Atherstone Town win 4-2 on Penalties
Tividale pay the penalty
Tividale will feel that they had a great chance of making it a double in the space of 3 days as they took the holders of the Floodlit Cup all the way after a disastrous start.
Tividale welcomed back Dan Bryson and Ryan Cheshire who were both unavailable on Saturday and reverted back to their familiar 5-3-2 formation. With Cheshire replacing the ineligible Niall Maher between the sticks and Bryson coming in for Jamal Fuller with Darragh Bustin moving back to his usual wingback role.
Played on a dreaded 3G pitch, a surface that we have not won on in over 3 years, we could have been behind in the very first minute when a half clearance from Bryson fell kindly to Jake Wooley and his precise shot was turned around his far post by Cheshire. Tividale hit straight back and after a great run and cross from Demetri Brown he found Bustin at Atherstone’s far post but he could not keep his header down and the ball cleared the bar.
Atherstone took the lead on 12 minutes when Tividale gave away a needless foul some 25 yards out and their top scorer Alex Naughton stepped up and with the aid of a slight deflection off the Tividale wall, the ball beat Cheshire on the inside of his right hand post.
Dan Smith should have done better 10 minutes later when Brown picked him out at the Atherstone back post and despite beating Atherstone full back Darren Eggleton with a fine first touch he blazed his shot over the bar. On 23 minutes Tividale came even closer when a poor headed clearance from Atherstone defender Kieron Brehon fell nicely to Curtis Cocking and his shot was touched over the bar by Atherstone keeper Carl O’Neill.
Atherstone doubled their leas on 30 minutes when Naughton turned provider when he found Atherstone substitute Sam McLintock with a deft clip and the young winger chipped Cheshire from 6 yards out. Tividale were just not getting the rub of the green in front of goal and Dan Smith again fired over from the edge of the “D” on 35 minutes, but they were back in it in the 38th minute. Brown beat defender’s Nathan Hutchcox and Kyle Baxter down Tividale’s left, pulled the ball back to Dan Smith and he swept the ball past O’Neill from 12 yards out.
Tividale were now in control of the game as the Atherstone defence struggled to cope and on 42 minutes from a Tividale corner Dan Smith and Hutchcox looked to get in a tangle and both went down, but on the video footage it is clear that the defender inexplicably attempted to stamp on the forward right in front of referee James Cox and the man in the middle had no option but to point to the spot. In the aftermath Hutchcox can count himself lucky to only receive a yellow card. Bustin stepped up and from the spot kick beat O’Neill and although the keeper guessed right the right way, he could not keep the ball out. .
Tividale were now all over the opposition and with the fourth official stating 4 minutes of first half injury time to be played Tividale struck again with 20 seconds of it to go. Eggeleton gave away a free kick a couple of yards outside the Atherstone box and Bustin stepped up and beat O’Neill at his near post with a trade mark curling and dipping free kick.
Half-Time:- Atherstone Town 2-3 Tividale
Bustin had a chance to extend the lead on 55 minutes when Baxter brought down Dan Smith on the edge of the Atherstone box, But this time he could not get it down quick enough and just cleared the bar but O’Neill looked to have had it covered. Tividale will feel they should have made the most of their dominance but fair play to Atherstone in the 67th minute they had a chance and took it. McLintock found Brehon and his cross should have been cleared comfortably by Hurdman but his header fell to Baxter and his shot on the half volley beat Cheshire.
Atherstone looked to have a great penalty shout when Ben Birch looked to have bundled over striker Joe Obi but Mr Cox waived play on. Both sides had great chances in the last 10 minutes. First Naughton had a shot from distance that went wide of Cheshire’s post. Then O’Neill had a lucky escape when he came out for a Bryson free kick into the box and missed it. He then decided to race out to challenge Dan Smith who calmly lobbed the ball over the keeper and goalbound but Eggleton was on the line to head clear.
Atherstone finished the stronger as the game became stretched and they had a couple of chances in the closing stages both falling to substitute Mitch Thomson but he failed to hit the target with either chance.
Full Time:- Atherstone Town 3-3 Tividale
With no extra time in this competition, the game went straight to penalties
TOWN Naughton Scored 1-0
TIV Bustin Scored 1-1
TOWN Obi Scored 2-1
TIV Welding Scored 2-2
TOWN McKlintock Saved 2-2
TIV Brown Saved 2-2
TOWN Ashby Scored 3-2
TIV Dan Smith Missed 3-2
TOWN Baxter Scored 4-2
Atherstone Town win 4-2 on penalties
Tividale Supporters Man of the Match – Darragh Bustin
Tividale:-1. Ryan Cheshire, 2. Tom Hurdman (16, Brad Welding 82), 3. Darragh Bustin, 4. Ben Birch, 5. Dan Bryson, 6. Matt Hunt, 7. Lee Smith, 8. Liam Wilkinson, 9. Dan Smith, 10. Demetri Brown, 11. Curtis Cocking (12. Harvey Walker 75)
Unused Subs:- 14. Karl Gardner, 15. Alex Cameron, 17. Jamal Fuller
|10. Demetri Brown|
|2. Tom Hurdman|
|3. Darragh Bustin||GoalGoal|
|8. Liam Wilkinson|
|9. Daniel Smith||Goal|
|22. Matthew Hunt|
|11. Curtis Cocking|
|6. Daniel Bryson|
|7. Lee Smith|
|4. Benjamin Birch|
|1. Ryan Cheshire|
|19. Harvey Walker||Sub11|
|16. Bradley Welding||Sub2|