Diggle Football Club beat Kirkheaton Rovers 4-3 in the final of the Barlow Cup at The Galpharm Stadium in Huddersfield in a nail biting final on Monday evening.
The game started slowly as both teams settled. In the 8th minute, following a mix up in Diggle’s goalmouth, Kirkheaton took the lead as a poor clearance bounced in of Gareth McWatt. Diggle held their nerve and responded, after 15 minutes, with a header from Kelvin McWatt. It looked like Kirkheaton would regain the lead after being awarded a penalty but the opportunity was lost as Ben Sykes sent the ball over the crossbar. With tension and nerves playing their part both teams probed for weakness. After 30 minutes Diggle found a route to goal as Matt Taylor headed the ball home.
Half-time: Diggle FC 2 – Kirkheaton Rovers 1
Kirkheaton started the second-half well and were rewarded with a goal on 58 minutes. With the game level again both teams had everything to play for. Following a determined effort to break the deadlock, the second half finished 2 – 2, forcing the game into extra time.
In the first half of extra-time Diggle took control of the game with goals from Steven Stolpock and Jamie McFarlen bringing the score to 4 – 2. It looked like the game was Diggle’s for the taking but Kirkheaton hadn’t read the script. With 8 minutes to go, Liam Dobson scored setting the game up for an electrically charged finish. In the final minutes of the game, Kirkheaton had a great shot on goal tipped onto the crossbar by Gareth McWatt.
Final score: Diggle FC 4 – Kirkheaton Rovers 3
Richard Devy, manager at Diggle FC said, “I am very proud of the lads, they are a credit to the club and Diggle. Although Kirkheaton were particularly strong in the first half, I always thought we could win. It’s fantastic to think that we won the cup ten years ago and now, here we are again.”
Diggle FC reserves have also performed well this season reaching the final of the Huddersfield Junior Challenge Trophy. They will play Shepley reserves at Lepton Highlanders in Huddersfield on Friday the 4th May, 6pm kick-off.
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