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Harrogate Town 0 – 1 Eccleshill United in West Riding F A Cup Final

A harsh last minute penalty was enough to send Town home empty handed from Bradford City’s superb Coral Windows Stadium.

Matt Bloomer was called into early action to make a vital tackle to stop Adam McCabe, but it was Town who began to create the better chances.

Brendon Roslund twice had to punch clear and Liam Hardy headed wide from a Conor Sellars cross.

Next it was Dominic Rowe’s turn to break clear to leave Hardy one on one with the keeper who managed to turn the ball for a corner.

Roslund saved an Ashley Worsfold shot under the crossbar before Craig Nelthorpe tried to chip the chip the keeper from distance.

Eccleshill’s, Adam McCabe relieved the pressure with a tricky run into Town’s box but he fired straight at Craig MacGillivray.

Unfortunately, Town squandered two more good chances before the break when Michael Woods blazed over the bar after picking up a rebound and Rowe was once again foiled by Roslund after outstripping the Eccleshill defence.

Eccleshill,who were fielding 9 Americans and a Canadian in their 16 man squad were matching Town for fitness and playing some excellent football.,which belied their league status. McCabe forced a full length save from MacGillivray and Town threw on all three subs in an effort to gain control.

Sadly, this was to prove unfortunate, as with 20 minutes left,Chris Hall who had only been on the field for a few minutes fell awkwardly and had to receive lenthy treatment from both physio’s,including being given gas and air,before being stretchered off.

This necessitated ten minutes stoppage time at the end of the match.

However, the ten men almost took the lead when Worsfold took advantage of hesitation in the opposition defence to round Roslund and square across goal, only for the keeper to charge back to scoop the ball away from the onrushing Adam Bolder.

At the other end, MacGillivray did well to block from Eccleshill sub Charlie Flaherty, but fellow sub,Dan Holowaty, was guilty of the miss of the match when he fired the rebound wide of the open goal.

Just when both sets of spectators were resigned to extra time, tragedy struck for Town.

The ball was struck powerfully at Matt Heath and the linesman immediately placed his flag across his chest denoting a penalty.

After a brief consultation, Referee David Storrie agreed with his Assistant Ref and pointed to the spot.

Marcus Edwards duly beat MacGillivray to send the cup to Eccleshill for the first time in their history and send the two coach loads of Town supporters home disappointed.


1 MacGillivray,2 Samuels,3 Nelthorpe, 4 Brown, 5 Heath (c), 6 Bloomer, 7 Sellars ( Bolder 58), 8 Woods ( Hall 69), 9 Hardy (Merris 58), 10 Worsfold, 11 Rowe.

Unused subs, 16 Smith, 18 Crook.

By John Harrison

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