St Neots beat nine-man Stotfold to reach cup final
HINCHINGBROOKE CUP SEMI-FINAL St Neots Town 3 Stotfold 0 SAINTS belied their lowly league finish as they comfortably dispatched UCL runners-up Stotfold to book their place in the final of the Hinchingbrooke Cup. After weathering some early pressure the
HINCHINGBROOKE CUP SEMI-FINAL
St Neots Town 3 Stotfold 0
SAINTS belied their lowly league finish as they comfortably dispatched UCL runners-up Stotfold to book their place in the final of the Hinchingbrooke Cup.
After weathering some early pressure the home side ran away with the game as Stotfold pressed the self destruct button by having two men sent off, and the margin of victory could have been greater but for some fine goalkeeping and rash Saints finishing.
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Manager Steve Lomas told the Hunts Post he felt that some of the tactics used by a physical Stotfold side did nothing for non-league football.
"They tried to intimidate, they failed, and they paid the price by having two players sent off. I was more than pleased with my own players' attitude, although we have played better without getting the results in the past few weeks."
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Stotfold had the first half-chance, but Saints keeper Lee Crockett saved well before the hosts came close when Luke Knight saw his shot cleared off the line. In an open first half Stotfold had more chances to take the lead, but it was Saints who opened the scoring just before the break.
Knight found the space to put in a pinpoint cross which was met by Luke Abraham on the volley, and his shot from the edge of the box gave the keeper little chance. Less than a minute later Ismael Ehui was felled in the box by Tommy Hull, and Stotfold's Mark Bryant, already booked, headed for an early bath after disputing the decision. Ehui took the penalty but was denied by a fine save by Brad Gillham.
Ryan Mitchell had the first chance in the second half for Stotfold but missed the target before Abraham and Matt Kenneford failed to find the mark. On 73 minutes Ehui was on hand to net a rebound after Abraham had seen his effort blocked and two minutes later Stotfold's Paul Donnelly was sent off for a second yellow.
Saints finished strongly with the two-man advantage and substitute Pete Okechukwu fired in a cross that Kenneford gladly tapped home.