They’re up: Goddy win promotion in style

GODMANCHESTER Rovers won promotion to the Premier Division of the Ridgeons Eastern Counties League in style on Saturday, going to Debenham LC and thrashing their opponents 5-0.

Striker James Hall scored a hat trick with leading goalscorer Paul Bass and midfielder Joe Furness also getting in on the act in the win that guaranteed Goddy their highest ever finish.

Nev Nania, one of the club’s joint managers, told The Hunts Post: “They were on it – they were focussed and set. I could see it in their eyes.”

The previous weekend, Goddy had beaten bottom side Cornard United 10-0 on the Saturday, but lost on their travels – 3-2 at Brightlingsea Regent – on Easter Monday. However, the re-focussed team went to Suffolk this Saturday and comprehensively beat Debenham, one of the division’s form sides, to secure at least second place in the Division One table and that all-important promotion place.

“We went into the game in a positive and very determined manner,” said Nania, who shares the management duties with David Hurst.

“We were fresh from training on Wednesday evening where we were able to work on set pieces and finishing.

“It paid dividends as we beat them comfortably with some of our best play of the season. We tore them apart from the word go – we are so proud.”

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John Turner went close to opening the scoring early on with Goddy indeed bright from the very start. The first goal came in the 19th minute when Chris Hyem combined well with Jason King to put through Hall who drew the goalkeeper and lobbed the ball over his head and into the net.

Furness got the second goal on the half-hour when he drove home a low shot after some good work from Bass. And Hall’s second – Goddy’s third – came just before the break when he beat the Debenham goalkeeper with a classy volley.

Bass got number four in the second half when he met a Hall cross with a diving header – and Hall completed his hat trick in the 80th minute when he curled a lovely shot into the top right hand corner of the net following some good work from Carl Foreman.

The three points meant that Goddy will join already-promoted leaders Thetford Town in the Premier Division next season with third-placed Whitton United just missing out.

Hurst said: “When we sat down with the chairman and the committee at the start of the season they said they wanted promotion. We told them we expected promotion plus a couple of cup runs – and that’s what we have ended up with.

“To be honest, with the team we have here, if we hadn’t managed those objectives we would have underachieved.

“The support from both the fans – the GMS they call themselves – and the committee, and the chairman, has been fantastic. It has been a great season for everyone. I told the players to enjoy it and embrace it because seasons like this don’t happen every year.”

Goddy now have two league games left. If they win their next one – against Thetford Town at Bearscroft Lane on Wednesday night (April 18) – they should go top becuase Thetford are currently three points ahead but with a goal difference advantage of just two.

Goddy’s final league game of the season – next Saturday – is also at home, against Whitton. But that won’t be the end of their campaign because the club have two cup finals to play. The first is the Eastern Counties League Cup final at Mildenhall Town’s Recreation Way ground on Friday, April 27 (against Whitton!). And then it’s the big one - the Hunts Senior Cup final against St Ives Town at St Neots Town’s Hunts Post Community Stadium on Friday, May 4.