Suffolk cruelly defeated on penalties

SUFFOLK'S Under-18 side were cruelly defeated in a penalty shootout by West Riding following a brave performance in the FA County Youth Cup Final at Bradford City's Valley Parade stadium.

SUFFOLK'S Under-18 side were cruelly defeated in a penalty shootout by West Riding following a brave performance in the FA County Youth Cup Final at Bradford City's Valley Parade stadium.

West Riding had taken the lead in the second half through Matthew Oxer's penalty, but a Scott Chaplin wonder strike took the game to extra time.

A further half an hour came and went without a goal and, with a penalty a piece missed by both sides, the vital shootout miss came from the unfortunate Suffolk skipper Sam Nunn.

After a nervous start from both sides it was West Riding who settled first, the impressive Paddy Miller flashing a left-foot strike just wide from the edge of the area.

Suffolk then saw striker Sean Bammant head just over following a good ball in from winger Chaplin.

West Riding spurned a golden opportunity to open the scoring after 27 minutes when Joe Gidnall shot straight at keeper Carl Goody from eight yards.

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The big talking point of the half came five minutes before the break when the tricky Chaplin went down under the challenge of Downey in the box, but referee Stuart Atwell waved away the protests.

West Riding took the lead 15 minutes after the break when the lively Oxer chased down a long kick from keeper Jonathan Gardiner, knocked the ball around Goody before being brought down.

Oxer then brushed himself down to send Goody the wrong way with a low left-footed spot kick.

A host of substitutions followed for both sides and Suffolk soon took hold of the game, equalising in spectacular fashion after 76 minutes thanks to a superb strike from Chaplin.

Operating on the left flank, Chaplin received the ball tight on the byline, stepped inside his marker with a quick piece of skill before curling a sublime curler into the top right-hand corner from outside the area.

From here on in Suffolk looked like the only side capable of finding a

winner and in the four minutes of stoppage time substitute Read missed a glorious chance to take the trophy when his close-range strike was acrobatically tipped over by Gardiner.

Extra time came and went without any real chances, with neither of two tiring sides wanting to lose this late in the game.

Then came the heartbreak of the shootout for Suffolk. Ashley Sloots, Chaplin and Tom Jeal converted, while a Bammant miss was cancelled out by a Goody stop.

West Riding scored their fifth and the unfortunate Nunn hit the foot of the post to seal Suffolk's fate.

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