Heartbreak for Meridian footballers in District Cup final

MERIDIAN’S senior footballers came agonisingly close to getting their hands on silverware as they fell to a 3-2 penalty shoot-out defeat to Knights Templar School in the North Herts District Cup final.

Having won the league competition Meridian faced KTS in the final having not played each other in the league, so neither team knew what to expect.

Meridian started much the stronger and had long periods of possession, but we were limited to a few long range efforts on goal.

Midway through the first half, Meridian were rewarded for their dominance. Callum Turner punished some poor defending before Anthony Lane doubled Meridian’s lead five minutes later.

After weathering some pressure from the KTS attack Meridian made it to half time with a two-goal cushion.

Half time saw four changes from the opposition in an attempt to get back in the game. For much of the half Meridian restricted KTS to long range efforts, many of which failed to hit the target.

The pressure began to tell and KTS pulled a goal back direct from a free-kick. The win was still on the cards and the KTS players were getting more frustrated resulting in them being reduced to 10 players following a reckless challenge.

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Meridian were unable to make the extra man count and KTS found the back of the net with five minutes of normal time remaining. The score remained 2-2 at the end of normal time.

Meridian were again dominant in extra-time but were unable to convert their chances which meant it would be decided on penalties.

Unfortunately Meridian failed to score two of their spot kicks and went down 3-2 on penalties.

‘The Boys have done exceptionally well to make it to the final and every one of them should be proud of their performances, it’s just a shame it had to end this way’, said Mr Franklin head of PE at Meridian.

‘Thank you to KTS for hosting the final and to Dr Firth and Mrs Roberts for their support.

‘Special thanks go to Mr Crook whose support of extracurricular activities has been invaluable this season.’

Team: Sam Cooper, Luke Ireland, Harry Stafford, Max McClean, Barnaby Jordan, Liam Purkiss, Jake Benstead, Jack Bailey, Reece King, Anthony Lane and Callum Turner.