Fleet Town 4 Whitchurch United 4, Fleet win 4-2 on penalties.

An incredibly entertaining 1st Round Hampshire Cup tie was played out at Calthorpe Park. There were 8 goals, 2 sending offs and a penalty shoot out. Fleet made a number of changes from their Wessex League tie on Saturday, while Whitchurch bought their team after a number of good league performances. The game itself was an excellent advert for Wessex League football.

The first half was an open half of football with both sides trying to play good passing football. Whitchurch took the lead when they completed a fine passing move and then doubled this soon after with another passing move down the opposite wing. As if things could not get any worse Fleet were soon reduced to ten men after a poor late challenge by midfielder Jack Selby. This however seemed to spur Fleet on and they started to press Whitchurch more. A goal was pulled back by the home team when Taylor Watts won the ball off a Whitchurch midfielder and broke to shoot past their goalkeeper. Half-time 1-2

The second half was barely 2 minutes old when Taylor Watts scored again to bring Fleet back level, many home fans thought this would be the turning point despite being down to 10 men. More attacking football from Fleet soon bought them a penalty after Dylan Ive was bought down in the box. Taylor Watts stepped up to take the kick but his shot was well saved by Whitchurch’s goalkeeper. This really was a turning point in the game as Whitchurch broke again and scored a 3rd goal, many Fleet fans thought this might be the end. They certainly felt this after Whitchurch waltzed through the Fleet defence again and scored a 4th goal. This was only the beginning of the real fun and games. Fleet made three substitutions and pushed to get back in the game. For the second time in the game Taylor Watts stole the ball from a Whitchurch midfielder and drilled the ball passed a helpless goalkeeper, with 4 minutes left in the game it still seemed a little late to effect the game.  Somehow this wasn’t the case and Fleet pressed for a 4th equaliser and thought they had it when an unmarked Enow Ojong headed into an almost empty goal, but a Whitchurch defender appeared superman like to handle the ball on the line to keep it out of the goal. A penalty was awarded and he was sent off. Billy Oram took over penalty duties and duly slotted the ball into the top corner. 4-4 and penalties beckoned.

Aiden Upward proved to be a hero in the shoot-out saving the first and fourth penalties while Fleet scored all of there penalties. Confusion reigned a little at the end when Aiden tipped the ball onto the bar but the referee and linesman had to have a chat to check the ball had not crossed the goal line, when the save was confirmed the junior massive invaded the pitch to celebrate with the players…

Fleet: 1. Aiden Upward, 2. Daniel Framp, 3. Brad Passfield, 4. Tom Williams, 5. Stuart Derry (c), 6. Durrell Brown, 7. Dylan Ive, 8. Jack Selby, 9. Taylor Watts, 10. Jake Hammond, 11. Pasha Tayo-Walker

Subs: 12. Kaine Macauley (11), 14. Billy Oram (3), 15. Bradley Wilson, 16. Enow Ojong (7), 17. Indy Thomas

Goals: Taylor Watts (42, 48, 86), Billy Oram (90)

Man of Match: Taylor Watts

Attendance: 88

Fleet’s next game of the season is Saturday 24th August when we host Baffins Milton Rovers in the Preliminary Round of the FA Cup. Kick Off 3.00pm