Butler strike puts Needham in cup final

RICHARD Butler insisted his 25-yard shot went just where he intended after his fine goal was enough to put holders Needham Market through to the final of the LB Group Suffolk Premier Cup at Bloomfields last night.

Elvin King

RICHARD Butler insisted his 25-yard shot went just where he intended after his fine goal was enough to put holders Needham Market through to the final of the LB Group Suffolk Premier Cup at Bloomfields last night.

Butler struck with four minutes remaining and his accurate pop shot went low into the corner of the goal to the goalkeeper's right - leaving Ian McLoughlin motionless.

Butler, who played well at the back for the home side with Rhys Barber, struck after a Kevin Horlock free kick was only half cleared.


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“I saw a gap and the ball went just where I intended it,” said Butler.

The Ridgeons League side were equal to their opponents for much of the match although it was Ipswich who went closest to a goal on an uneven surface.

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Ipswich were well represented with manager Jim Magilton, his assistant John Gorman, plus Bryan Klug, Steve McCall, James Hollman and Charlie Woods all present along with the man in charge - reserve team boss Chris Kiwomya.

While FA Vase beaten quarter finalists Needham were made up of mainly local players, Town had Canadian and Bermudian full internationals in their side in the form of Jaime Peters and Reggie Lambe.

Peters' pace caused ex-Town player Horlock a few problems down the right side, but it was Lamb who Horlock tripped in the 12th minute to give the visitors a penalty. Dean Bowditch stepped up to take the kick but saw his shot touched onto the bar by Liam Jones - with Bowditch putting the rebound wide from an angle.

Lambe struck the post soon after the restart, and after a good run by substitute Ronan Murray, Barber cleared off the line in the 63rd minute.

With 10 minutes left the busy Bowditch worked an opening, but missed the target despite slotting his shot beyond Jones.

Ipswich's youngsters will have learned from this experience, but full marks to Needham who did not carry a particular goal threat but were well organised and far from outclassed.

Needham now play Lowestoft Town in the final at Portman Road on April 28.

The teams

Needham Market: Jones, Pemberton, Horlock, Parker, Butler, Barber, Boyland, Bexford (Bailey 89), Phillips (Dixon 72), Smy (Smith 63), Thrower. Unused subs: Dennnis, Sparkes.

Ipswich Town: McLoughlin, Hyam, Richards, Cawley (Daniels 57), Ainsley, Eastman, Peters, Upson, Wickham (Murray 57), Bowditch, Lambe. Unused subs: Ward, Clark, Watson.

Referee: Mr S Long (Ipswich).

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