In a thrilling game away at Wildern School,Â the Year 11 ‘eagles’ tore their opponents apart in extra time to progress one step further to their dream of ending their secondary school career as ‘County Champions’.Â Wildern who had previously won the cup twice, were the favourites to qualify for the next round, especially as they had previously defeated the ‘eagles’ 4-1 in the last 64 of the National Cup in Year 9. However, as in previous rounds, the ‘eagles’ refused to be intimidated by their opponent’s history, and exacted their revenge in tremendous style.Â The game could have been over by half time if the ‘eagles’ had converted the numerous chances that they created through their enterprising and attacking play. The chief culprit was Goodson (sorry Ellis)Â who missed three 1v1’s against the goalkeeper, but he did make amends with a well taken goal in extra time so all is forgiven.
The ‘eagles’ took the lead in the first half through a Josh Webb corner which swerved over the keeper into the far top corner of the goal. This lead was thoroughly deserved and Wildern was defending desperately to keep the score at 0-1. The second half started the same way as the first finished, with the ‘eagles’ dominating possession and creating good goal-scoring opportunities. The defence was being well marshalled at the back by Willoughby and with Glennister a defensive rock alongside him, and Urry providing the wizardry in the middle all looked well. It was no surprise when the ‘eagles’ scored their second, and the game looked all over. Suddenly Wildern realised they were on their way out and threw caution to the wind, ball after ball was launched into the ‘eagles’ goalmouth andÂ the 2-0 lead started to look a little fragile. The game turned in the space of ten minutes, 1-2, 2-2, and only a great save by Barnett kept the dream alive, angling backwards he managed to dive and tip the ball over the bar. This save turned the game, and seemed to inspire the ‘eagles’,Â who went close to winning the match in normal time when UrryÂ glanced a header agonizingly over the bar.Â Extra time once more! The third time this year! The ‘eagles’ were young men on a mission. A lot of players’ heads would have dropped losing a 2-0 lead, but not this team.
Captain Danny Urry pounced in the first half of extra time to make it 3-2 and when Goodson made it 4-2, Wildern were ‘OUT’. Ayling rubbed more salt into their wounds with a fifth after rounding the keeper in the second half of extra time, to make the score an even more satisfying 5-2.
An outstanding result against a very good team who had dominated County Cup football for 4 years. Maybe this is the ‘eagles’ year after all, and they really do deserve it. This cup run has been a rollercoaster of emotion, but just maybe, as they say, the ‘eagles’ name is on the cup, and the title, Yr 11 County Champions, isÂ more than a possibility. Well done boys, congratulations on another great performance to all the players involved.