The Middlesex Sunday Premier Cup Final was contested on the evening of Wednesday, 16th June at Bedfont Sports FC, between Takers FC and Shire United. In contrast to our previous final at the same venue four days earlier, the players did not have to contend with high temperatures. This time, a light mizzle developed into a steady downpour.
The progress to the final of both clubs had been impressive with both of them disposing of some formidable opposition. Takers FC had beaten previous winners Chiswick Griffin Albion (3-2 Home), Abbey (4-1 Away) and Larkspur Rovers Sunday (6-2 Home). Shire United’s list of victims was even more impressive, comprising of the 2 finalists of the previous (2018-19) competition and the winners of the 2017-18 competition. Highgate Albion (4-1 Home), Old Southall Sunday (5-1 Away) and NLO (2-0 Home) had all been beaten.
Disappointingly for the neutrals, the anticipated epic “battle of the Titans” did not materialize and Takers FC eventually overwhelmed their unfortunate opponents to register a 7-0 victory. They must be congratulated on their outstanding performance.
The evening started badly for Shire United, whose goalkeeper, Luke Wynn-Lintern suffered a ligament injury in the pre-match warm up and had to be replaced by Richard Pike, who was pressed into service off of the substitutes bench.
Zaine Vincent heads Takers' first goal
Zaine Vincent scored Takers first goal in the 12th minute, with a diving header from Adam Laaref’s cross.
Rhys Ellis puts Takers 2-0 up from the penalty spot
Takers’ second goal followed 5 minutes later, from a penalty converted by Rhys Ellis, after Corey Parchment had been tripped while cutting in from the right.
There was no further scoring in the first half. Fabio Nunes scraped the Shire crossbar with a piledriver from 25 yards. Shire’s best chances fell to Guy Hollis, who fired wide after being put through by Mark Bidmead and Mark Bidmead, whose shot was parried by keeper, Hafed Al Droubi.
Half time score: Takers FC 2 Shire United 0
Takers increased their lead after 2 minutes of the second half, through a ballistic missile from Zaine Vincent.
Zaine Vincent lets fly...
Things got even worse for Shire United in the 53rd minute, when captain, Mitchal Gough was dismissed from the field after receiving a second caution.
...and beats Richard Pike for Takers' third goal
Shire United came close to scoring when Christopher Haran’s header from a free kick by Scott Davies was brilliantly saved by the Takers’ keeper.
Adam Laaref's cross shot gives Takers their fourth goal
Adam Laaref’s cross shot over Richard Pike brought Takers’ fourth goal in the 67th minute and another cross shot went through the keeper’s hands 13 minutes later, for their fifth.
Riccardo Clarke-Rowe's drive beats the keeper for goal number 6
Riccardo Clarke-Rowe scored his side’s 6th goal, with a drive in the 86th minute. Adam Laaref capped a very good evening for Takers FC, when he rounded the keeper to net goal number 7 in the closing seconds.
Adam Laaref rounds the keeper before netting Takers' seventh goal
Full time score: Takers FC 7 Shire United 0
Referee Thomas Healy and his team of Robert Reid, Darren Fenner and Shaun Wills controlled the proceedings very well.
The organising committee members chose Adam Laaref of Takers FC as Player of the Match.
Our thanks are again given to Bedfont Sports FC for the use of their facilities and for the assistance given on the day. The all-ticket attendance was 207.
Hafed Al Droubi, Aldis Alui, Harold Joseph, Montel Shalders-Gayle, Bendie Idikayi, Rhys Ellis, Riccardo Clarke-Rowe, Corey Parchment, Zaine Vincent, Fabio Nunes and Adam Laaref.
Substitutes (rolling substitutions are used in this competition): Josh Lancaster, Remarrio Francis, Carlos Ribeiro, Jordan Lovell and Aaron Braine-Edwards.
Manager: Reece Manning Assistant Manager: Tosin Lawanson Coach: Nehemiah Houslin.
Richard Pike, Thomas Hedges, Steven Loveridge, Adam Baigent, Mitchal Gough, Scott Davies, Ryan Blake, Max Worsfold, Guy Hollis, Jack Mills and Mark Bidmead.
Substitutes: Tom Betts, Nathan Smith, Adam Sewell and Christopher Haran.
Manager: Blieu Huskinson Assistant Manager: Peter Cornhill Coach:Tom Betts Physio: Callie Lansley.
Our official photographer Chris Benn, as ever, has provided some fantastic imagery from the game. If using these photos please give credit.
Chris has selected 10 highlight images which can be found here.
Readers wishing to view the full gallery of images can find these here.