Valley Green win Invitation Trophy
The Invitation Trophy Final took place this afternoon at a cold Rosemary Lane in Halstead with premier division rivals Witham Galacticos and Valley Green going head to head.
Valley Green had the opening opportunity when Alfie Manley beat the full back down the right hand side, he pulled the ball back and it was worked for Bennett to strike but his effort was blocked as was the follow-up, at the other end Jamie Panting worked some apace o the right of the penalty area and crossed for Ahern but he shot over the bar, then and long ball in from Adams found Lawes unmarked at the far post but he couldn’t make proper contact and Dyer was able to gather the ball.
Galacticos took the lead after 14 minutes, ball was played in to Jack Stoneham who played a great first time pass through to Mitchell YEO who run on and slid the ball past Dyer in the Valley goal. Four minutes later Galacticos had the chance to double the advantage when a free-kick from Harry Stoneham was only half cleared to Jack Murphy who smashed the ball back against the cross-bar with the rebound being cleared away for a corner.
Valley Green equalised in the 23rd minute when McCormack played the ball wide to Harry ELLIS who on the right of the penalty area fired the ball in to the bottom corner. Valley were now on top and a great piece of build up play saw Bennett go clear of the defence but he overran the ball after going past the keeper, four minutes later Valley were in front for the first time, a long free-kick from Ryan Scofield deep in his own half went over the head of Bennett but fell for Alfie MANLEY who finished nicely over Cannock and in to the net to make it 2-1.
On the half hour mark Galacticos forced a free-kick on the edge of the Valley area, Mitchell Yeo stepped up and forced a fine save from Dyer who pushed the ball round for a corner, the game continued end to end and it was Valley who had the last effort of the half when the unmarked Scofield headed wide at the far post from a corner.
Half-Time: Witham Galacticos 1 Valley Green 2
The second half began with Galacticos in the ascendancy, a ball over the top caused a clash between a valley defender and the goalkeeper but came to nothing, then a corner from Stoneham fell nicely for Jack Stoneham who fired wide when well placed to score, then Yeo had a another chance heading wide unmarked from a corner from Lawes.
Valley made it 3-1 when after a long clearance out of defence forced Galacticos Harry Stoneham to make a bad mistake heading the ball in to the path of Alfie MANLEY and he ran on clear of the defence and fired past Cannock in the Galacticos goal.
Galacticos had the chance to pull a goal back mid-way through the half when Panting worked his way clear wide on the right he advanced and pulled the ball back for Ahern who was unmarked but show how he missed the target. Valley extended their lead with 15 minutes to go when Robbie Bennett sent Alfie MANLEY clear and he slotted the ball past the advancing Cannock to complete his hat-trick, the two minutes it was 5-1 when Robbie BENNETT fired in to the net after running clear of the defence. A moment of madness then happened ten minutes from time when Valley were awarded a penalty after a loss of discipline from Shannon Cannock saw him kick over Valley player Scofield and give away a penalty which Adam CLARK stepped up to score against his former club to make it 6-1, Cannock then continued to lose the plot and was sent from the field leaving his team with ten men for what looked to be dissent towards the referee. Galacticos had a final chance to pull a consolation back when Substitute Steve Vicarage’s chip over the keeper came back off the bar.
Final score: Witham Galacticos 1 Valley Green 6
Witham Galacticos: Shannon Cannock, Jamie Adams, Pat Ahern, Jamie Panting, Jack Murphy, Chris Long, Mitchell Yeo, Harry Stoneham, Jack Stoneham, Jamie Lawes, Joe Jackson. Substitutes: Ben Jeffery, Steve Vicarage, Aaron holder, Tony Wilkenson, Charlie Humphrey.
Valley Green: Charlie Dyer, Ben Palmer, Ryan Scofield, Joe Carlyle, Robbie Bennett, Adam Bennett, Ryan McCormack, Harry Ellis, Danny Stocking, Alfie Manley, Adam Clark. Substitutes: Matt Franks, Jack Stracey, Luke Nial.
Man of the match: Alfie Manley – Valley Green FC.
Referee: David Feline.
Assistants: Stephen Vieira and Paul Goodwin.
Fourth Official: Derrick Packer.