Arbroath HSFP 2, NCR Dundee 2
(AHFPs won on penalty kicks)
A LARGE crowd gathered at Ogilvy Park, Arbroath, for the final of the Alliance Cup against NCR. FPs were underdogs being a league below their Dundee counterparts.
The game kicked off with FPs gaining most of the possession and playing good passing football. They deservedly took the lead after 15 minutes when Radunski broke down the right before cutting down the by-line and squaring across the box for MIKE SMITH to pounce on and side-foot home.
Half-time: High School FPs 1, NCR 0.
NCR came out the more positive team after the break and in the 60th minute they equalised when a high ball was launched into the FPs’ box. Goalkeeper Cargill and an NCR striker went to challenge for it and as the ball fell to the ground the striker managed to poke it into the far corner of the net.
FPs struggled to settle on the ball allowing NCR to get back into the game. They then went 2-1 down when NCR were awarded a penalty, Burness was harshly penalised when the ball was hit off his arm at close range and the striker calmly slotted home the resultant spot kick.
Just as NCR supporters prematurely pulled out the bottles of Champagne, FPs pushed forward in the last couple of minutes throwing everything in to the attack and from 20 yards PAUL RADUNSKI drove home, with the aid of a deflection, a low shot into the corner of the net past the sprawling ‘keeper to rapturous home applause.
Full-time: High School FPs 2, NCR 2.
The full 30 minutes of extra-time was played without any real chances being created, FP’s centre half Smith came close with a header just past the post and NCR has a shot blocked off the line by Tierney.
Drama then unfolded as it went to penalty kicks. FPs selected their five hotshots and Gordon Smith led the way with a calmly placed shot into the corner. NCR scored their first and Daz Wilson converted the second for FPs. NCR blasted their second high and wide and Paul Radunski converted FPs’ third. NCR hit the bar with their third and it was left to Jim Forbes to step up and seal the victory with a well placed kick.
A well deserved victory for FPs who have battled hard through each round allowing captain Gordon Smith to lift the prestigious trophy in front of the jubilant home support and to the delight of manager Donnie (Senior) Smith whose tactics paid off and the physio Micker with his magic sponge and deep heat.
FPs: Cargill, Burness, Wilson, Morrison, G Smith, Kyle Lyons, Kieran Lyons, Tierney, Warren, M Smith, Radunski. Substitutes: Cargill, Tasker, Forbes, Reid and Munro.
l Picture: back page