City of Peterborough’s excellent East Premier A Division campaign ended on a high with a 10-1 final-game win at Bretton Gate on Saturday (April 1).
Visitors Harleston were missing a few key players, a fact City ruthlessly exposed as they bounced back from the disappointment of losing out on the title last weekend (March 25). City have finished third, three points behind champions Old Loughtonians and pipped for second place on goal difference by St Albans.
Both teams had an early chance each before Joe Finding opened the scoring for City – squeezing a drag flick between the keeper’s legs. Experienced midfielder Alex Armstrong then notched his first of the season, reacting quickest to a rebound, before adding his second soon after. Manish Patel then struck an excellent fourth goal on the reverse from the top of the ‘D’.
At half-time City decided to shuffle the pack in preparation for next season. Finding was moved further up the pitch and this had an immediate effect as he was in the ‘D’ to finish off a flowing move. The only disappointment of the day came when a sloppy pass out from the back went straight to a Harleston player who drew the ‘keeper before squaring for his teammate to convert.
City then had their best phase of the game scoring three goals in three minutes. The key to this was early one or two touch passing that tore a tiring Harleston side apart. Patel and Ben Read were both key in the build up of these goals with Read then converting two of them himself and Will Astbury also converting from close range.
Patel then scored a brilliant solo effort, jinking through the ‘D’ before firing into the corner on his reverse. Astbury then dispatched his second to make it 10
Talented youngster Nick Reddy was just pipped to the man of the match award, won by Armstrong, in his last game before heading off to University.
City skipper Ross Booth said: “This win was a perfect finish to a successful season in which a lot of new and young players have integrated into the squad and will only be stronger with this experience under their belts. We can all enjoy the summer and then will be raring to go again come next September.”