Sport: FA Vase Final

The Boatmen sail to victory in the 2014 FA Vase Final.

Sholing FC beat Northern Side West Auckland 1-0 at the nations ground Wembley. In a close 1-0 win thanks to a goal from Winger Marvin Mclean that gave Sholing FC their first FA Vase trophy bringing it back down south for the first time since 2008.

Both sides have travelled a lot to get to this point of the tournament and by getting to the final and to play in such a fantastic stadium is an achievement itself, which both teams should feel very proud of themselves for doing.

It was a very nervous start from both sides and this was obvious to the eye as there was many wayward pass’s here and there and crosses not going anywhere and so both teams really lacked the final ball. But it was Auckland who broke through and got the first real chance. It started from a chipped through ball over the top of the Sholing defence from midfielder Robert Briggs into the path of John Campbell only for the Sholing goalkeeper and eventual “Man of the Match” Matt Brown to make a fine save.

This really got the crowd going and both sets off fans were out in fine voice keeping the atmosphere alive and well. Sholing’s first real chance came in the first half, when danger man Lee Wort beat his man to shot to the near post which forced Jordon Nixon into making a fine diving save to his right hand side.

The best chance of the first half went to Sholings Winger Marvin McLean, as he received a beautiful ball on the left side of the pitch and seemed to just snap at the ball to hard ending with the ball in the stand and Sholing fans with their heads in their hands.

Just before half time however Auckland did come close when the referee awarded a free-kick just shy of 30 yards out, which was struck well by Briggs and saveed fantastically by Matt Brown.

0-0  at (Half-Time)

Sholing came out of the dressing room earlier than Auckland and straight from the off in the second half they “came out of the blocks”, they were far quicker than Auckland. Shortly after the break it was Barry Mason who was through on goal after a good passing move from the Southampton based team forcing Auckland Keeper Nixon to make a save. A Few minutes later it was then Mattie Moffat, who only just returned from a big operation, found himself receiving a beautiful chipped through ball over the Sholing defence, only to hit it into the second tier of seats and should have scored here. Chances came and went but it seemed that it was just every move ended with wither a misplaced pass or a poor shot from both sides.

But it was in the 70th minute when Local boy and winger Marvin Mclean pounced on a misjudged header from Auckland defender Neil Patterson only for it to fall right into the path of Mclean who was running at pace towards the Auckland goal and with help from a defection off defender Lewis Galpin helped guide the ball into the Auckland net. Sholing 1-0 Celebrations didn’t last long, as the tense feeling came through to the Sholing camp that maybe Auckland could nick this and possible take it to extra-time.

At this stage in the game it was a case of when will Auckland score after having multiple chances! But it was that man Matt Brown who made save after save, Punching corners away, catching every cross that made the difference between the two sides keeping it 1-0.

In the final ten minutes of the game fitness played its role and the mid-week games that Auckland had played really showed in the player’s legs, but with minutes to go it was Auckland winger Dennis Knight who headed onto the post, But Sholing defended well and held on.

Full Time 1-0

The ref blew his whistle and the Sholing team sprinted over to the fans. Huge commiserations to West Auckland who have now lost their 2nd FA VASE final in a matter of 3 years!

Goal Scorer Marvin Mclean said after the game “I couldn’t have wished this with a better group of lads, we’ve all been together a long time, 5 years we have been together,  I love them all”.

We spoke to Peter Dixon (Manager of Auckland) after the game who said “I don’t think we could have done anymore today…the bottom line is we didn’t put the ball into the net”.

Matt Brown was fantastic today and very much kept the game in their own hands. Auckland were unlucky and just lacked the final ball every time. It will be a long journey home for the Northern side and their fans. A great day for both clubs whatever the outcome would have been and it will be a day that players and fans all-around the two clubs will remember for years to come. Sholing winning 1-0 on the day was the fair result and so congratulations to them.

Sholing: Brown, Carter, Diaper, Castle (Miller), Bright, Bowers (Brewster 72), Mason, Fennemore(Sawyer 77), Wort, Mason(C) , Mclean

Unused Sub: Jarvis, Watts

West Auckland Town: Nixon, Patterson, Green(C), Hall, Galpin, Close, Vipond(Banks 72), Briggs, Moffat(Richardson 72), Campbell, Knight

Unused Subs: Garthwaite, Gibson, Wilkinson, Richardson

Goal Scorer: McLean 70

Attendance: 5439

Written By:

Declan McCarthy

@dec11mcc                                                                            Email: