Cup joy for ten-man Harleston
Foulsham 2, Harleston Town 3DESPITE going down to 10 men just after half-time, Harleston emerged victorious from this epic Anglian Combination Junior Cup tie to claim their place in the semi-final.
Foulsham 2, Harleston Town 3
DESPITE going down to 10 men just after half-time, Harleston emerged victorious from this epic Anglian Combination Junior Cup tie to claim their place in the semi-final.
Harleston looked understandably rusty after such a long break as Foulsham began to dictate the game with their superior recent match practice very evident.
Harleston coped well with the pressure thrown at them and defended well, restricting the hosts to long shots and set pieces.
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As the half wore on Harleston began to show signs of their usual attacking football and duly took the lead when James Trudgill broke from midfield and played in Fionn Goodwin Wright who showed great technique to lob the onrushing keeper from the edge of the area.
However, the lead was short lived when five minutes later Harleston failed to clear their lines and the Foulsham striker finished well.
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Harleston began the second half brightly, using the slope to their advantage and looking the most likely to break the deadlock.
On 55 minutes a Foulsham counter attack saw Harleston full-back Marc Pearce make what looked like a clean challenge on the striker on the edge of the visitors' penalty box.
But the referee decided, controversially, that Pearce was the last man and sent him off.
Almost immediately after the incident, Jake Imrie surged into the Foulsham box only to be up-ended by the goalkeeper and the referee awarded a penalty to Harleston.
David Norman coolly sent the keeper the wrong way to restore Harleston's lead.
Fired up, the ten men of Harleston were now on top of the game and battling for every ball and showing real character. With 15 minutes left Goodwin Wright broke free of the Foulsham defence and kept his cool to finish well. But, from the kick-off Foulsham grabbed their second goal of the game to set up a tense finish.
Foulsham then began to throw everything at Harleston but could not find a way past Town, with Harleston keeper David Forster in inspired form.
Paul Bliss' superb last-ditch tackle - with the last kick of the game - helped seal victory as, despite their numerical disadvantage, Harleston held on for the win and progress to the semi-finals.