15.04.23 vs Coventrians (Semi-Final)



Joe Delaney scored a 54th minute free kick to send 10-man Sutton United through to the final of the Saturday Vase with a deserved win against Coventrians at Coleshill Road Stadium.

Sutton’s quest to reach their second cup final of the season was seriously put to the test when keeper Reiss Wagstaff was shown a straight red card in the 15th minute for pulling back Sean Kavanagh at the edge of his penalty area. And for the second time in the last four matches, Sutton had to put an outfield player between the sticks and this time it was defender Matt Hurrell who stepped up to the task.

Coventrians immediately tried to press their advantage, but Hurrell stood firm to make a couple of confident saves, in particular a 30-yard rocket shot by Reid Kearns, followed by a great leap to tip over a corner-kick. This then settled United to their task as they finished the half strongly. Striker Leyton Hines came close with a shot across keeper Josh Thompson, that went inches wide of the far post and Freddie Cockerell forced a good saved from Thompson at his near post before heading Josh Duggan’s free kick onto the upright.

Coventrians had two good chances early in the second half, when Kavanagh shot from the right that Duggan deflected wide and then a curling effort from the left that skimmed over the cross bar.

However, it was Sutton who broke the deadlock in the 54th minute when Cockerell dribbled his way forward before being fouled 20 yards from goal, and Delaney scored with a fantastic free kick that he bent over the wall to beat a diving Thompson.

United then worked incredibly hard to protect their lead. The back four were immense and the work rate throughout the team showed as the game edged into the final stages. And it was United who had a great opportunity to increase their lead in the 73rd minute, with a sweeping attack that then saw Joe Gildea denied by Thompson from eight yards.

But with only a narrow lead, there was a nervous end to the match as the referee indicated an extra ten minutes to be played. Coventrians threw everything at Sutton in search of an equaliser, but United stood firm, with numbers back to clear a goal line scramble, Hurrell making a strong save from an 18-yard strike and Duggan sticking a leg out to block an effort in front of goal.

In the mix of all this pressure, Sutton still had opportunities to put the game to bed with some breakaway chances that fell to Pete Bannister, Gildea and Delaney but Thompson was proving difficult to beat.

In the end the one goal was enough to see Sutton through to the final where they will meet MFL Two rivals Knowle FC. Before then, Sutton still have work to do in the league, with their next match at Hampton FC on Wednesday 19th April.

Team: Sutton United
1. Reiss Wagstaff
2. Lewis James
3. Jake Murrell
4. Matty Hurrell
5. Aaron Evans – Brad Gregory 86’
6. Josh Duggan (c)
7. Leyton Hines – Pete Bannister 68’
8. Sef Semlali – Remi Bell 74’
9. Freddie Cockerell – Joe Gildea 61’
10. Tom Massey – Jonny Grigg 57’
11. Joe Delaney

Liam Burke, Richard Heath, Matt Gough,
Chris Bratt-Rose, Louis Singh, Derek Cullen

Team: Coventrians
1. Josh Thompson
2. Lee Kelly – Jordan Brandish 82’
3. Nathan Cadby – Jacob Dumbleton 67’
4. Tom Hall
5. Ally Hassan
6. Danial Hume – Aaron Donaldson 31’ – Anthony Allen 79’
7. Reid Kearns
8. Liam Kennedy
9. Sean Kavanagh
10. Nathan McGarrity
11. Dale Wigmore – Cory Williams 82’

J. Connolly

Match Officials: Jordan Griffiths, Dean Allison, Ryan Ansell

Sutton UnitedStatisticsCoventrians
12Attempts on Target8
6Fouls Committed16
1Yellow Cards2
1Red Cards0

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