County U18 Boys' Cup Final

Bottesford Town FC Win 2024 County U18 Boys Cup

Bottesford were crowned champions after a 3-1 victory against Epworth Town Colts AFC U18 Colts

Bottesford Town have been crowned the 2024 Lincolnshire FA County U18 Boys' Cup champions following a tight and rain-sodden clash at Lincoln United's Sun-Hat Villas & Resorts Stadium. 

Nathan Robinson's side took the title with two late goals in a 3-1 victory against 2022 County U16 Boys' Cup champions, Epworth Town Colts. The final wasn't without its drama, even before kick off, with a pitch inspection required following persistent rain throughout the day - but thanks to exceptional work by the Grounds Team at Lincoln United, the pitch was deemed safe to play.County U18 Boys' Cup Final

Jaxon Borland let fly the first attempt on goal of the game within the opening minutes, unleashing an effort from the edge of the Epworth box that was seen behind by keeper Adam Rudkin. Bottesford continued to apply the early pressure, with crosses whipped into the Colts box - though Bottesford were unable to capitalise on their deliveries. It was just 13 minutes in though when Epworth won themselves a penalty as Sam Davies was brought down in the Town box, and Will Vickers wasted no time in pointing to the spot. 

Lewis Shillito hammered the ball into the top corner of the goal to convert the spot kick and give first blood to Epworth. Bottesford tried to get themselves back level quickly, though a nice one-two down the left wing saw them into a dangerous area before the Epworth keeper smothered the ball to see away the danger. It wasn't long before Adam Rudkin was called into action again, as Ollie Jarvis curled an effort at goal before the Epworth keeper made a superb two handed save to deny Bottesford's number 10. 

A few minutes later, it was the Bottesford keeper making exceptional saves as Luke Wilder blasted an effort from close range before Harry Stabler denied the number 12 from doubling Epworth's lead. 

It was around the 42nd minute when another spot kick was awarded, but this time to the Blue's as Bottesford's Keigan Hutchinson was brought down to give them a chance to equalise. Ollie Jarvis stepped up and fired into the bottom left corner, making it 1-1 as we headed into the break. The second half proved to be a very cagey affair, with neither side wanting to give anything away. Bottesford looked the more attacking of the two sides in the early stages of the half, but Epworth contained the threat effectively. County U18 Boys' Cup Final

The half proved to be a very strong midfield battle, with little in the way of clear cut chances. Keigan Hutchinson and Blake Gregory found themselves in space to put Bottesford ahead, but were unable to convert and their attempts were either saved or put wide of the target. With Extra Time looking almost certain, both sides continued to persist in trying to break the deadlock - until up stepped Charlie Robinson. 

Adam Rudkin came out of his box to put a successful challenge in that initially saw away the oncoming danger, before Robinson picked up the ball, took a touch and rifled an absolute screamer into the back of the net from distance to give Bottesford the lead in the 86th minute - sending his team mates and coaches crazy. Sam Davies tried to equalise from Epworth quickly, but his effort skimmed the top of the bar. Epworth, now pressing high into Bottesford's half as they sought a late equaliser to take the game to extra time, left two Bottesford attackers on the half way line and one ball over the top saw them both clear through on goal with just Adam Rudkin to beat. Marshall Backhouse-McDermid didn't need an invitation and slotted home for Bottesford's third and wrapped up the game and the title for his side. 

Nathan Robinson, Manager of Bottesford Town FC U18's, said: "I'm exhausted! Obviously, I'm ecstatic. The boys have been first class today, first of all - full respect to Epworth. They were a very difficult opponent tonight, they worked incredibly hard and made it really difficult for us. The game could've gone either way, literally up until the last couple of minutes, but in the end I felt that we deserved it. Towards the end of the 2nd half, I felt we dominated possession, didn't create as many chances but at the end of the day, I think we thoroughly deserved it. 

We spoke to the lads about those sort of moments [before Charlie Robinson's goal], and then as its come across, we're all shouting 'hit it' from the touchline. The execution, on top of the conditions that we're in, for him to finish it the way he did was absolutely superb. Full credit to Charlie for it, what a finish!"

Jaxon Borland was presented the Player of the Match award by Simon Leach, Area Delegate for North East Lincolnshire on the Lincolnshire FA Council. The Match Official's were Will Vickers, Tony Sharrock, Luke Senescall, and Jay Wright. County U18 Boys' Cup FinalCounty U18 Boys' Cup Final







The full image gallery, taken by Lincolnshire FA's Official Photographer - Ed Mayes Photography - can be viewed here

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