Tyne Metropolitan College 3 v 1 East Norfolk College
TyneMet Men's Football HE team won the BCS National Knockout Cup after a showpiece final against East Norfolk College at Doncaster Rovers' Keepmoat Stadium.
Tyne Met had all the early possession and totally outplayed their opposition who were either nervous due to the occasion or simply shell-shocked by how TyneMet started the game.
Steven Baptist was asking a lot of questions of the East Norfolk defence early on, dribbling through 2 and 3 players at a time but he could not find the finishing touch.
Daniel Chambers, who started the game quietly, sprung in to action after 15 minutes going past a player and finding himself in a great position for a shot just inside the box, but the ball would not fall kindly and the shot was scuffed and eventually blocked.
Michael McMullan was also causing the East Norfolk defence problems down the opposite flank to Baptist by waiting for challenges and skipping past them to cut in a couple of crosses, but TyneMet could not convert their possession and chances.
However, after 30 minutes they broke the deadlock after winning a free kick around 33 yards out. Only a premiership player would have the audacity to have a shot from this distance but as Daniel Smee and Michael McMullan stood over the free kick it was clear that one of them was going to give it a go. Smee dropped it off to the side and the in-form McMullan, who had scored 7 in 2 games going in to this fixture, hit a rocket of a free kick. Both his legs came high off the ground with the velocity of the shot and the ball flew at such a pace the keeper didn't move. The ball nearly burst the back of the net, rising into the top right hand corner to put TyneMet into a 1-0 lead.
It took the goal to spur East Norfolk in to action, and they pressed Tyne Met right back in to their own half and for the remainder of the 1st half the Tynesiders were very much weathering a barrage of East Norfolk attacks. The East Anglian outfit were utilising their teams height, and a long throw specialist who was throwing the ball deep to the back post.
Tyne Met stood firm at the back with the confidence of a side who had kept 5 clean sheets in their last 5 outings. TyneMet have a great combination at the back with captain Jack Walker who is tidy on the floor, vice captain Simon Patterson who has been the most consistent in this cup and has been likened to Rio Ferdinand, the silky skills and radar passing of Simon Wilson and the pace of Matthew Speedie, who lives up to his surname and is one of the first names on the team sheet.
Half time came and after an inspirational team talk from Garrity his troops went out for the last 45 minutes of this fairytale cup run which was so close to coming to a winning end. TyneMet could almost taste the victory.
But East Norfolk came out at a ferocious pace, causing Tyne Met numerous problems, but you always got the feeling that Tyne Met had a few more gears and they were just waiting for their chance to turn it on and push on to victory.
That's what they did 10 minutes later when some lovely work down the left from Simon Wilson ended in a cross from the left back, and the man you would want on the end of it, was. Stephen Forster is deadly from this distance and he guided the header back across the goal and in to the net leaving the keeper with no chance, and TyneMet in a commanding position with 15 minutes of the game remaining.
Garrity thought this blow would knock the wind out of the oppositions sails but it only seemed to spur East Norfolk on and they started piling the pressure on again. Steven Robinson came on to go 5 at the back but this could not stop the East Norfolk train and with 9 minutes remaining they pulled one back through a long throw and a close range header, this was the first time Thomas Bridgett, Tyne Mets super keeper, had been beaten in 450 minutes of football.
But Tyne Met were destined to win this cup through their determination and teamwork and no one was going to spoil their day. With 1 minute remaining on the clock Tyne Met caught East Norfolk on the break and Alex Redfearn, who made the difference with his bite in midfield in the second half, neatly finished across the keeper beating him from an acute angle.
Tyne Met had done it winning their 1st ever National football cup. Manager Garrity commended his players after the game stating "On and off the pitch they have been impeccable, and I would just like to thank them all for their commitment and endeavour in making this success possible, I could not have asked anything more of them over the course of the season, and in this competition. They have all given me 110% every game and that is a rare commodity. Well done lads you are a credit to yourselves and deserve to be crowned British Champions"