Felixstowe & Walton United 2 Blues 3
By LFC Media
Matt Blake treble helps the Blues retain the Suffolk FA Premier Cup
The Blues successfully retained the Suffolk FA Premier Cup at a wet Portman Road. A treble from Matt Blake, taking his overall tally for the season to 22, ensuresd the Blues held on to the Trophy although they had to withstand a late comeback from Felixstowe & Walton United, who fought valiantly back into the game late on.
Josh Hitter was cup tied for the Blues but everyone else was available. Joe Jefford, Patrick Brothers and Christy Finch were all making their final appearances, with Joe Jefford and Christy Finch starting and Patrick Brothers coming on for Finch as an 86th minute substitute.
Leiston started extremely well, with Christy Finch firing over early on while Joe Francis tested Marcus Garnham from distance at the other end. However, the Blues took the lead in just the 5th minute when Christy Finch turned on the right hand side to pick out Blake who sidefooted home with his left foot. Leiston then dominated for long periods of the first half with Noel Aikens and Matt Rutterford doing good jobs in the middle of the park and Joe Jefford and Tom Bullard keeping it tight at the back. Blake was sent away after another good attack by Leiston but Jack Spurling pushed his shot wide of the post. Leiston continued their surge and were off target with a couple of strikes before in the 44th minute left back Seb Dunbar ventured forward and Spurling again made a decent stop.
Leiston doubled their advantage four minutes into the second period as Finch this time turned and sprinted down the left to cross for Matt Blake to poke the ball home to give Leiston some breathing space. Leiston were still piling men forward and Spurling saved from Finch outside the box and then Dominic Docherty went close with a header that hit the top of the crossbar. The Blues scored a third goal as Blake turned a defender well and slotted past Spurling to seal his hat-trick and 77th Blues goal in all competitions. Both teams started to make changes and Miles Powell hit a rising strike that Garnham had to make a great save to deny the striker. Garnham had to be alert to produce another two really good saves before in the 87th minute, Dominic Docherty fouled in the penalty area to receive his second yellow card and ex Blues player Jack Ainsley sent Garnham the wrong way to reduce the Blues lead. This seemed to give Felixstowe confidence and ninety seconds into five minutes of added on time, they scored from close range after a delivery into the box was met by Jordan Matthews. The ‘Seasiders’ threw men forward in a last ditch attempt to level the scores but after a free kick was sent into the box, Leiston defender Joe Jefford cleared and referee Callum Walchester blew for full time much to the delight of the Leiston bench and crowd.
After going without a win for their last 11 league games, it was certainly nice to finish on a high and win some silverware at the end of the season.
FT: - Felixstowe & Walton United 2-3 Leiston.
Felixstowe & Walton United: - Spurling, Bloomfield, Clarke, Kerridge, Barber, Davis, Francis (Ruel 56 mins), Jack Ainsley, Hilliyard (Mills 84 mins), Matthews, Powell (Henry 82 mins). Subs not used: - Wiggins, Stuart Ainsley.
Leiston: - Garnham, Hammond, Dunbar, Aitkens, Jefford, Bullard (Knights 80 mins), Lawrence, Rutterford (Eagle 75 mins), Blake, Finch (Brothers 86 mins), Docherty. Subs not used: - Davies, Beckwith.
Attendance: - 1,382.
Man Of The Match: - Matt Blake.