On Sunday 22 April, in front of a packed crowd at Marlborough Town’s first team pitch, MYFC U18’s hosted red hot favourites Chippenham Town U18’s in the semi final of the Wiltshire Youth Cup. Most of the Chippenham squad attend the Pulse Academy which specialises in football development for already talented 16-19 year olds, playing a high level of football.
After a scoreline of 0-0 at the final whistle, then still 0-0 after extra time, MYFC only very narrowly lost on penalties!
Playing on such a big pitch, on a warm day against such a strong talented team, MYFC organised themselves to defend deep and try and score on the counter attack. From start to finish Chippenham had more possession and much of the game was played in Marlborough’s half. However, such was the quality of MYFC’s play, great running, pressing and tackling, Chippenham rarely threatened to score. Jacob Gumm was the rock at the heart of defence, Matt Snell and Sam Hall roamed around the midfield stifling Chippenham’s efforts to move forward. Marlborough counter attacked a couple of times each half, and both Elliot Smith and the pacey James Handley were unlucky not to steal it!
The game opened up more as extra-time was played. Chippenham had more chances to score but Ben Drewett had an outstanding game in goal, making several tremendous saves, he was only beaten once as the ball thundered against the bar and came back out from a free kick. The opposition became increasingly frustrated as the game neared its conclusion and Marlborough had one final chance to clinch it but were stopped by a great diving save from the Chippenham keeper. So 0-0 after extra time and on to penalties!
In the cruellest of penalty shoot outs Marlborough went first and scored their first 4 penalties, but were matched each time by Chippenham. Sadly the home team’s 5th penalty was missed and Chippenham converted theirs to win the game. Despite losing, MYFC were immensely proud to have held such a strong team over 120 minutes and had given their best performance of the season. The supporters applauded the lads and were full of praise for such a brave effort.
Stu Slater MYFC chair said: “I couldn’t be more proud of our u18’s. We may have lost the match, and good luck to Chippenham in the final, but this was a huge victory for team spirit and playing our hearts out. What a performance! MYFC at its best today…”
The U18’s still have the chance to win the league title decidein the next week or two. Watch this space ….an amazing season!