CROWLAND 0 DEEPING 3 (PFA Senior Cup Final)
(PFA Senior Cup Final)
PETERBOROUGH League Division One side Deeping Sports lifted the PFA Senior Cup with an all-action display at London Road last night.
This has been the first season clubs from outside the top flight have been able to enter the competition, and Deeping showed the big guns how to do it with a convincing win over Premier Division outfit Crowland.
Simon Dethick's side showed true grit and determination as they battled from the outset, throwing themselves in front of everything and showing great composure in front of goal.
And after the game the manager admitted it was a surprise to win so comfortably. He said: "I honestly thought Crowland would be too strong for us, we didn't even bring any champagne to celebrate with.
"The boys did really well though, and defended brilliantly, I thought the back line were fantastic."
Deeping took the lead after 11 minutes when Crowland failed to clear a free-kick properly. The ball was headed back over the defence and Dave Weston latched onto it, skilfully lifting the ball beyond Dave Chapman and into the top corner.
The Premier Division side seemed to take their time getting into their stride, but eventually awoke from their slumber, putting together some flowing moves but never troubling Ash Sylvester in the Deeping goal.
But it was the Division One boys that had the better of the first period, as they displayed more hunger and desire than their opponents.
And they grabbed a second goal at the perfect moment just seconds before the half- time whistle.
Once again Crowland failed to clear their lines, Deeping won the ball back on the right-hand side where Ben Stimpson took his time to line up a perfect cross straight onto the head of Paul Kirk, who placed his header perfectly back across goal and beyond Chapman.
The second half started brightly for Dave Willis's side who played more neat football on the bobbly London Road surface, but again rarely testing Sylvester.
Crowland simply could not break down a dogged Deeping defence who shut down quickly and got their bodies in the way of everything Crowland threw at them.
Crowland came very close when Tim Quy's volley from a corner somehow squirmed underneath Sylvester and rolled along the line before being hacked clear by Andy Stewart.
However, moments later things went terribly wrong for Quy. He was robbed of the ball at the back by substitute Dave Burton-Jones who ran clear for a one-on-one with Chapman.
The Deeping man, who had been on the pitch for only a matter of minutes, composed himself and slipped the ball beyond the keeper to seal the win with 15 minutes to go.
And it could've been worse for Crowland when Stewart's header looked as though it had crossed the line before being hacked clear, but the officials waved play on.
Willis was disappointed with the start his side made. He said: "We started far too slowly, and to concede just before the break really knocked the stuffing out of us.
"But I was still confident we could come back in the second half, but the third goal was just the icing on the cake for them."
Crowland: Chapman, Kelley (McWilliams), Curtis, Quy, Fox, George (Dainton), Jackson (Wilder), Southgate, L. Weston, Hempson, Noble. Subs not used: Stone, Talbot.
Deeping: Sylvester, Woodcock, Frith-Robinson (Chamberlain), Cornell, Wilson, Pearson, D. Weston, Stimpson (Burton-Jones), Palmer, Kirk (Stewart), Birtles. Subs not used: Shaw, Goode.