Glossop North End 1-2 North Shields – FA Vase Final Match Report

   

North Shields’ late resurgence inflicts more heartache for Glossop North End in the FA Vase Final at Wembley Stadium

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After a morning and lunchtime of grey skies partnered with frustrating gale force winds, the usual London sunshine shone as soon as fans filtered into the home of English football.
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The Wembley Stadium surface could not be described as anything other than perfect, you could not have asked for a better day for a once in a lifetime occasion, well I say once, six of the Glossop North End squad were making their second appearance at Wembley Stadium when the North West Counties side lost 2-0 in the Vase Final back in 2009.
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With the national anthem sung it was then time to get underway as the hordes of blue on one side and red on the other encouraged and got behind their beloved teams.
North Shields got the final underway and after a few minutes were kicking into the shade with Glossop attacking into the blazing sunshine.
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It was the North West Counties Champions, who coincidentally started the brighter attacking the sunny end, pushing high up the pitch and driving North Shields deeper and deeper. Tom Bailey for GNE was the player catching the eye in the early stages looking extremely lively coming in from the left wing position. The first sniff in the penalty area fell to Bailey as he anticipated a loose ball in behind the Robins’ defence but the striker can’t quite make contact and the ball was cleared.
Glossop continued on top in the first 15 minutes playing with great intensity, Samuel Hare in central midfield was linking everything together with cute and simple passing and moving. The first shot on target came just under the quarter of an hour mark and went to the team in the ascendency, brilliant cross from the right hand side by Bowler picked out an unmarked Kieran Lugsden however his header fell straight into the arms of North Shields’ goalkeeper Christopher Bannon.
The side from the North East were struggling to get into any sort of rhythm in the first half, the Glossop backline were comfortable to be honest.
GNE came close to taking the lead once again just a couple of minutes later as another deep and looping cross is met by Tom Bailey who rose highest but flicked his header just over the crossbar.
I wouldn’t say that North Shields got into second gear as such but they did as the half went on hold more of the ball and have more attacks however with no real opportunities. If they did put a teasing ball in behind the Glossop defence for the Robins’ strikers to pounce upon, GNE goalkeeper Greg Hall was doing his best Manuel Neuer impression, coming out way off his line and out of the penalty area and clearing any possible danger.
Glossop captain Dave Young who has had an unbelievable season nearly unlocked the door as he pounced upon a loose ball from a corner but scooped just too much underneath the ball which spun way over the target to keep the final goalless.
The blue army never stopped urging their side on and as the half grew older and older their chances became better and better, another deep cross again is headed back across goal by Bailey to the onrushing Hare but he couldn’t quite get the desired contact to trouble North Shields.
Straight up the other end North Shields went and produced their only chance of the half. 47 goals this season for Gareth Bainbridge received the ball on the edge of the box and struck low with venom but Hall comfortably got down and pushed wide.
With 45 minutes on the Wembley clock arguable the best chance of the half arose and fell to Kieran Lugsden of GNE who already has 26 goals for the season found himself inside the penalty area on the right hand side with the ball at his feet and fires goal wards but Bannon awkwardly saves.
HALF-TIME: GLOSSOP NORTH END 0-0 NORTH SHIELDS
Into the second half and it had to be an improvement from North Shields and it certainly was, the break certainly helped the North Easters and allowed manager Graham Fenton to get them going again, or to just get them going full stop.
The Robins came out and started on top from the off driving forward, moving the ball quicker and taking more risks and just four minutes into the half they came the closest anyone had come in the match so far. Ben Richardson who had been lively in patches, picked up the ball from at least 25 yards out, turned and realised the space he held and let fly, absolute rocket of a strike which cannoned off the crossbar.
Shields came incredibly close once again and but for a top keeper in the Hillmen’s goal in Greg Hall. Not sure who was the man who took the shot but it was a fierce one at that and Hall terrifically tipped over the bar to keep them at bay.
This save proved to be monumentally bigger as just two minutes later Glossop North End took the lead in the FA Vase Final. A ball was whipped in from the blue army side and in the first stage it looked like there was a decent penalty shout on Eddie Moran I believe but it wasn’t given, the ball popped out to the back post and was squared to which Tom Bailey was holding his position and from two yards out he simply couldn’t miss and he smashed the ball into the back of the net to send the Glossop bench and fans into absolute pandemonium.
The Hillmen nearly doubled their lead soon after as a cross from the right hand side was just headed wide of the goal by a Shields defender I believe.
With 15 minutes to go and the early second half positivity from North Shields had been diluted again by the goal, they needed something, anything to swing the momentum once again. They started to commit more bodies forward in which they had to, it was getting to the do or die time.
Approaching the 80 minute mark and North Shields got themselves right back into the FA Vase Final, a corner from the far side to the near post was met by who other Gareth Bainbridge, who had been fairly quiet all day however when a striker has scored 47 goals in 42 appearances (48 goals in 43 now) in one season, then they can simply pop up at any moment and find the back of the net. It was a perfect glancing header from a well worked corner kick and the North Shields ultras finally had their chance to go wild.
FULL-TIME: GLOSSOP NORTH END 1-1 NORTH SHIELDS
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Into the first-half of extra-time and it was tricky to sense who had the upper hand at this point but I think you’d have had to go with North Shields, still on the up from the late equaliser and now really sensing they could win this and just six minutes into extra-time they were massively sensing they could win it as they scored their second goal of the afternoon.
BT Sport’s Man of the Match Denver Morris picked the ball up on the right wing and showed tremendous pace to beat his man and curler in a dangerous cross to which Bainbridge narrowly missed however substitute Adam Forster did not, he brilliantly caressed the ball back across goal and past Greg Hall to send the red side of Wembley into dreamland, never ever write off Northern League sides.
Glossop had to throw absolutely everything they had left at North Shields now, every sinew remaining in their bodies and they did come close through substitute Samuel Grimshaw, another cross from the near side was met by Grimshaw but his header went just wide of the goal.
Next came a moment in the match which sparked huge controversy, GNE skipper Dave Young went up for a header and I think he was elbowed mid-air as when he hit the ground he was unconscious, and you know it is serious when every single player urges the medical team onto the pitch immediately. Young thankfully came round and regained consciousness and also jogged back onto the pitch after being assessed however, the defender was informed to leave the pitch and I presume for blood being displayed therefore down the tunnel he went to get sorted and when re-emerged he wasn’t being allowed back onto the pitch. If my information stands correct one of the Wembley club medical doctors addressed Young and the officials and for precautionary reasons could not possibly be allowed to continue. This decision let’s just say wasn’t taken well, Young was absolutely apoplectic.
HALF-TIME IN EXTRA-TIME: GLOSSOP NORTH END 1-2 NORTH SHIELDS
From the kick-off for the start of the second half of extra-time, North Shields headed straight for the corner somewhat early maybe.
Apart from North Shields substitute Kieran Wrightson having a ‘why not I’m at Wembley moment’ not a lot else happened, going for a slightly speculative volley from all of 40 yards, can’t blame him and to be fair it hit the extension behind the goal so not a bad effort really.
FULL-TIME IN EXTRA-TIME: GLOSSOP NORTH END 1-2 NORTH SHIELDS – NORTH SHIELDS ARE 2014/2015 FA VASE CHAMPIONS
Commiserations to Glossop North End on a valiant effort, a league and cup double isn’t bad really is it?
Massive Congratulations to North Shields though who stuck in there throughout the entire final and struck twice in real opportune moments in the match and great credit has to go to them. 
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