Magpies pinch a victory in close encounter

Longhoughton Magpies U12...1 Longhorsley U12...0

GLENDALE LEAGUE U12

LONGHOUGHTON Magpies marched into the Glendale League Cup Final with another fine display last Saturday.

The final is just reward for the team who have played a style of football that would have their Newcastle namesakes green with envy.

From the first whistle the boys showed they were up for the challenge and pressed the Longhorsley defence for an early goal.

Longhorsley showed that they were going to make life difficult for the ambitious Longhoughton side and defended in numbers.

The Magpies stayed true to their passing game and early chances fell to captain Chris Cooke.

This was not going to be a game of one-way traffic though.

Brandon Mallaburn and Harry Davison needed to be strong and disciplined in defence to keep the opposition at bay.

When Longhorsley did break through, goalkeeper Liam Crowston proved to be as reliable as he has been all season.

Both sides played an excellent standard of football, but Craig Vint and Ben Pratt started to control the midfield, feeding wingers Joe Straker and Elliott Campbell with decisive through-balls.

Substitutes Daryll Cooke, Lewis Finney, Matty Campbell and Josh Breeds freshened up the team at half-time and enabled the team to continue pressing for that vital goal in the second period.

The Magpies really started to turn the screw and the pressure paid off.

A superb corner by Straker was met by Daryll Cooke on the volley to fire the Magpies into a deserved lead (1-0).

Dan Phillips, out all season with back problems, was keen to come on and show that he can fill the shoes of missing striker Alfie Murton, however, nerves got the better of the Magpies coaching staff who decided to keep the team unchanged for the final few minutes.

On the final whistle, the Magpies resisted the urge to celebrate and showed great sportsmanship, shaking the hands of a well-tuned, hard-working Longhorsley team and proving that the standard of football in the Glendale League is of a high quality.

The Magpies, sponsored by Tarmac, now look forward to a final against the Lowick Falcons, a team unbeaten all season and with a goal difference of 50.

While the Magpies go into the game as underdogs, they are playing with confidence and are starting to peak at the right time, believing it is their turn to lift the trophy.