For the second time in three years both Worthing College Men’s Football squads made their respective County Cup semi finals. Both squads were strong and good to go, however Worthing ended up with mixed feelings and emotions at the final whistles.
The 1st XI took on their arch rivals City College Brighton at the Waterhall 3G and took the game to their opponents straight away going into a 2 goal lead. A Harvey Sparks wonder strike and that man Charlie Dennis again on target from outside the penalty area. Worthing needed to hold this lead until half time, however in added time City College got one back, lobbing Jimmy Punter from an acute angle. 2-1.
The aim for the second half was to keep City College at bay, but literally straight from kick off City equalised after a Punter save. 2-2. The game then turned into a you attack we attack match, which was exciting for the neutral, but not the coaching staff. Into extra time and Worthing began to get another foothold in the game. Josh Parazo found himself in on goal and he unselfishly squared the ball to the tireless Luke Richards, who slammed the ball home. Worthing just needed to hold firm to reach the final. Unfortunately a mistake in the midfield with 10 minutes to go cost Worthing dear and City College brought the score back to 3-3.
Now to penalties. Worthing missed first with Richards blazing over, however City missed their next one to even things up. The quality of penalty was right up there until the unfortunate Matt Smith, who was the 16th penalty taker and his strike over the bar gave City a final berth.
Performance Coach Dave Hall was gutted for the players “It wasn’t a classic with regards to quality, however there was a lot of heart out there and I thought we should have held on in extra time, however it wasn’t to be. When City’s centre half chipped his penalty in off the bar I kind of felt it wasn’t going to be our day. However there were some massive individual performances out there today and hopefully we can take this onto the rest of our National League campaign with a playoff place still up for grabs.”
The 2nd XI had better fortunes against The Regis School 1st XI at Hill Barn. Worthing raced into a 3-0 lead at half time with goals through Jacob Wuyts, Tyrone Madhani and Sam Marsden. Worthing again controlled the 2nd half, but let their opponents slightly into the game, conceding one goal to make the final score 3-1.
Hall commented “I spoke to Danny Cullip after the game and he was extremely pleased with the lads and how they played on a difficult pitch. Its another final for the whole squad to be proud of and the record in both competitions reads 3 finals, 2 semi finals and 1 quarter finals in the last 3 years, which is great for the players development getting to a business end of a competition.”
Onwards & Upwards,