JPL Finals day Worcester City U13's v Stourbridge
Ormer FC, Wells FC in the groups...Stourbridge in the final
After winning their JPL regional league following a stunning play-off win against Oxford Soccer Schools last week Worcester City U13's had now earned the right to play against the other five regional league winners in the 'Champion of Champions' JPL Finals day.
With the group stage split into 2x groups of three Worcester City were drawn to play Wells City FC & Ormer FC(JPL Cup winners last week) in 30mins games.
Group stage results:
Wells FC 2-2 Ormer FC
Wells FC 0-3 Worcester - 2x Harry Wilesmith, Yousef Khan
Worcester 2-0 Ormer FC - Yousef Khan, Joe Rothery
In what had been had been a day of torrential rainstorms everyone was soaked through to the skin although the pitches continued to remain in great condition. With Worcester City and Stourbridge FC winning the group stages we were expecting a very exciting tactical & physical challenge in the final and we were not disappointed!
The game started at an electric pace and was finely balanced when WCFC scored the first goal. After 10mins Harry Wilesmith skillfully lobbed the ball over the keeper and as he dived back to save it on a wet pitch the linesman flagged highlighting the it had crossed the line, 1-0 City!
Stourbridge then went up a gear and following a foul on the edge of the WCFC box the resulting free kick was smartly curled into the top corner, 1-1! At the midway stage it was end to end stuff with both teams creating chances, but both keepers and defence were faultless. Stourbridge using their pace down the left wing scored next with the winger unselfishly cut the ball back to the striker who made it 1-2 Stourbridge!
WCFC regrouped, changed to a more attacking formation and the momentum swung again with Yousef firing a stunning shot into the bottom corner from the edge of the area to make it 2-2! With minutes remaining the pressure grew as both teams pushed forward, however the referee blew to signal the end of game & onto a dreaded penalty shootout...
With nothing separating the two teams after 2 calmly taken pens, Archie pulled off a great save to make it 2-3 to WCFC with 2 pen each remaining. The next round of pens both were scored in what was nail biting tension and then Archie pulled off another stunning save to win WCFC the Finals Cup!
Respect to Stourbridge who played some great football throughout the day and either team would have been worthy winners. We know how it feels to lose a final on penalties and it's never nice.
Congratulations to the Worcester City players and coaches as it's been a rollercoaster of a season on & off the pitch, but ending the season like this will a lasting memory and is a fantastic achievement!!!
Onwards and upwards, next stop St George's Park!!!!!