Ten-man Willen leave it late to lift Intermediate League Trophy

Willen celebrate their victory
Willen celebrate their victory

Willen won the NBDFL Intermediate League Trophy Final at Stratford Fields on Saturday, beating Wing 2-1 despite playing most of the second half with ten men.

Danny Wing was shown a straight red for kicking out after being tackled on the edge of the penalty area with the match finely poised at 1-1. But despite the numerical disadvantage Willen had the better chances and won the game with a clinical strike from Ricky McAdam with five minutes remaining.



Willen took the lead in the second minute, from a corner Danny Wing beat Paul Searl to the ball and seemed to shoulder the ball into the back of the net. Ryan Guinnane tried his luck from distance for the Milton Keynes based side but easily cleared the bar, before the Wing skipper Dan Farmer cut in from the left and warmed the hands of Willen keeper James Green.

A probing Willen cross was half cleared to the edge of their box and running in McAdam blazed over the top, and on twenty four minutes the scores were back on level terms when a Wing attack ended with a trip inside the box leaving referee Gavin Smith little option but to point to the spot, Dan Farmer levelled from the spot kick.

A Willen throw found Scott Barton who fired at goal from distance, he succeeded in feeding Guinnane twelve yards out who swivelled and fired over, and on the stroke of half time Wing conceded possession in their own half allowing Danny Wing a free run at goal and he forced keeper Alan Bazell into an excellent save, turning away for a corner. H/T: 1-1

Ryan Guinnane glanced an early second half corner over for Willen, and moments later came the dismissal of Danny Wing. A promising Willen attack was ended just outside the box by a Wing defender, but a reaction after the tackle saw the referee brandish a red card to the Willen player despite his side having the free kick.

A fifty seventh minute throw to Willen then found Ashley Ferguson inside the box, with back to goal he managed to turn and shoot however a narrow deflection took the ball out for a corner, which was then headed wide by Samuel Nevin. Wing then pushed on with the advantage and Dan Farmer attacked down their right, as he squared into the box it seemed inevitable a goal would come but somehow a defender got back quickest to clear the danger.

Samuel Nevin then saw another header brush a defender as he went for goal, and from the corner Nevin slid in but could only loop over the crossbar under heavy pressure from a Willen defender. Pete Rowe then drove into the Willen box and flashed the ball across goal but no team mates were near enough to divert home, then with five minutes remaining Willen scored their winner. A ball through the Wing defence saw Ricky McAdam run on and fire across goal and into the bottom corner.

From the restart Wing attacked at pace, and a cross was headed at goal by Steve Fazakerley from six yards out and a brilliant reaction save by James Green denied what looked a certain equaliser, and the save earned applause from the large crowd. Willen held off anything Wing threw at them in the final minutes and held on to lift the trophy.