Mowbray Rangers Lions fight back to reach first County Cup final

Mowbray Rangers showed character and spirit in their semi-final fightback EMN-201003-180152002Mowbray Rangers showed character and spirit in their semi-final fightback EMN-201003-180152002
Mowbray Rangers showed character and spirit in their semi-final fightback EMN-201003-180152002 | User (UGC)
Mowbray Rangers Lions Under 15s booked their place in the county cup final after a superb semi-final comeback at rivals Thurmaston Magpies on Sunday.

A tense start, with both sides looking nervous, made for a scrappy opening, with tackles flying in.

Magpies struck first, midway through the first half, when a corner was not cleared, allowing the goalscorer to beat stand-in keeper Jai Wedgwood and find the bottom corner. Mowbray began to grow into the game with forward Tallen Burt unlucky to hit the post from long range, while other decent chances went begging.

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A decisive moment then came as a Thurmaston forward raced clear and bore down on Wedgwood who pulled off a superb save to keep Mowbray just one behind at half-time.

Rangers will play Desford in their first-ever county cup final EMN-201003-180141002Rangers will play Desford in their first-ever county cup final EMN-201003-180141002
Rangers will play Desford in their first-ever county cup final EMN-201003-180141002 | User (UGC)

Mowbray left the pitch frustrated, but after a rousing team talk restarted in determined fashion and soon got into their rhythm.

Roughly 10 minutes into the second half the equaliser came when forward Freddie Mcgrady skilfully rode a couple of challenges and finished superbly into the bottom corner.

The Lions were on top, shrugging off challenges and matching Thurmaston’s physicality as they pushed for the winner.

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And when a careless tackle on Mowbray winger Bayley Purkis saw the referee point to the spot, the visitors had their chance.

Semi-final action at Thurmaston as Rangers clear the danger EMN-201003-180130002Semi-final action at Thurmaston as Rangers clear the danger EMN-201003-180130002
Semi-final action at Thurmaston as Rangers clear the danger EMN-201003-180130002 | User (UGC)

Wedgwood, now playing as a striker, smashed the penalty into the bottom corner to complete the comeback.

The Lions took control of the tie as the hosts struggled to mount any decent attacks.

And the game was put to bed with 15 minutes left when Burt delivered a superb cross from the right into the six-yard box which was met brilliantly by Wedgwood to volley a third.

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Mowbray managed the tie clinically with solid defending and good quality possession as the Lions marched into the county cup final for the first time.

Managers Steve Clarke and Adam Isherwood were delighted at the performance and praised their superb character and desire to get back into the game as a stunning second half got what it deserved.

Lions will face Desford Blues in the final, with date to be confirmed.

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