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Match Previews & Reports

Cove celebrate Colony Cup success

A second final in three weeks, and a second penalty shootout, for Cove Youth U13 took place on Sunday as Harlaw Park hosted Cove Youth against West End in the 2023/24 Colony Cup Final.

An end-to-end start to the final saw plenty of chances, the first of these falling to Cove’s Alfie Gray. Lucas Binns was chopped down on the edge of the 18-yard box giving Gray the chance to draw first blood. Unfortunately for Cove, however, Gray was unable to convert from the freekick.

West End then had a chance up the other end with striker Casey Main firing wide of the post six minutes into the clash. West End then had a dominant spell with lovely one-touch football and chance after chance wasted.

These wasted chances were punished as an error from a West End player was pounced on by Alfie Gray who scored the easiest goal he’s had all year. Cove then doubled their lead as Lucas Binns was slipped through and, as calm as he liked, dinked the keeper and wheeled away to celebrate a superb finish.

A mostly boring end to the half for the spectators was to come as each team lumped the ball at every opportunity and neither set of players looked comfortable on the ball. A big save in stoppage time, however, from West End keeper just about kept them in the tie and let them have a glimmer of hope going into half-time.

This glimmer however turned into a fight as straight from kick-off West End nearly pulled one back after some dodgy defending from Cove but a defender just managed to clear their lines. Five minutes into the second half, a corner that, again, wasn’t dealt with by Cove was bundled into the net by West Ends Frank Loach.

Tensions were rising and tempers were flaring, both on and off the pitch. To the credit of the referee, he stood his ground and was, in my opinion, great all afternoon.

Cove nearly regained their two-goal advantage after a mistake from a West End defender allowed a Cove striker in on goal but a brilliant recovery from Callum Duthie saw him block the shot off the line. Elliot Fraser did grab Cove’s third however after a corner fell to his feet inside the six-yard box.

Although many teams would sit down when two behind with 15 minutes left, West End got up and fought back with a goal from Casey Main.

Then with less than five minutes on the clock, a West End striker was brought down by the last man, seeing him dismissed. Harry Rudd stepped up for the resulting freekick and smashed it beyond the keeper to take the final to penalties.

Cove’s Lucas Whicher stepped up and smashed home the opening pen before Casey Main brought the two titans back level. Alfie Gray, who opened the scoring for Cove then buried his penalty which put the pressure on Harry Rudd. He placed his right in the side netting and celebrated.

Duncan Thomson then stepped up and slotted home to make it Cove 3-2 West End. The Cove keeper then made the first save of the shootout to keep the advantage before the drama unfolded.

Cove’s Dylan Maclean stepped up and smashed it beyond the keeper but was asked to retake it. He then did the same again and once again was asked to retake it. The third time was the charm though, as he placed the ball in the back of the net and placed all the pressure on West End. Donald Awa, the Cove number one then produced another brilliant save to win the 2023/24 U13 Colony Cup for Cove Youth.

Cove Youth Player of the Match: Alfie Gray

Gray created chances for himself and his teammates and scored the opener and his penalty.

West End Player of the Match: Casey Main

Main scored the second for his team to start the comeback as well as his pen and he looked really positive all afternoon.

Cove Youth Magic Moment:

Donald Awa saving the final penalty winning his team the Final.

West End Magic Moment:

A huge save from Aaron Kidd to keep the game at just 2-0 just before half-time.

Cove Youth U15s

Donald Awa

Lucas Binns

Callum Duncan

Elliot Fraser

Alfie Gray

Leon Groves

Joshua Hulme

Findlay Jamieson

Dylan Maclean

Oliver Pearce

Sonny Reith

Daniel Smith

Duncan Thomson

Lucas Whicher

Luca Mordente

West End U15s

Ruairidh Anderson

Charlie Beattie

Jacob Bruce

Calvin Campbell

Archie Cardno

Callum Duthie

Cole Innes

Frank Loach

Aaron Kidd

Casey Main

Nolan Petrie

Louie Skinner

Finlay Smithwhite

Harry Rudd


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