Super Stanway lift Ridgeons League Cup
AFTER disappointment in the Newson household on Monday, it was all smiles yesterday.
The day after Sam Newson’s Needham Market side lost 1-0 to Enfield Town in the Ryman League Division One North play-off final, twin brother Ben turned in a man-of-the-match display for Stanway Rovers as they won 2-1 against Norwich United to lift the Ridgeons League Cup at Diss Town.
Michael Cheek headed Stanway in front in the 16th minute after Norwich United keeper Ben Nower sliced an attempted clearance just outside his penalty area.
Norwich, who were outplayed in the opening period, drew level in the last minute of the half, George Wilson’s sublime pass down the right wing setting Lee Hunter free and his pinpoint cross was powerfully headed home by Jordan Blyth.
Stanway regained the lead when Tom Jeal headed Ben Newson’s left-wing cross into his own net five minutes after the restart for what proved to be the winning goal.
The Essex continued to create the better chances in the second half and could have won by an even greater margin such was their superiority over the 90 minutes.
Man-of-the-match Newson said: “It was disappointing for them (Needham Market) to lose in the play-offs for the second season running. Hopefully they can go up next year. After finishing fifth in the league it was great for us to win today and end the season with some silverware.”
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Newson, who plays on the left wing, has scored an incredible 35 goals this season – 26 in the Ridgeons League Premier Division – and he admitted: “It has been a hell of a season for me.”
His displays are likely to attract suitors in the summer and Newson said: “This is the last year of my contract. I don’t know what will happen in the summer. I will just wait and see and take it from there.”
Stanway boss Steve Pitt, who took over at The Hawthorns last summer, was delighted to end his first season with a trophy.
“I think there was only going to be one winner out there today. Our play in the first half graced the final and we should have been two or three ahead at half time, when we said it could go one of two ways.
“Either we could feel sorry for ourselves as the scoreline was not a real reflection of the first 45 minutes, or we take strength from the quality of our first-half performance, which is what we did.”
Looking ahead Pitt said: “It is a question now of building on what we have achieved and taking this club forward. I believe this group of players are good enough to play at the next level.”
Norwich United manager Paul Chick said: “You can’t be anything other than disappointed when you get to a cup final and don’t play to your potential.
“We gave them the first goal, although they would have been disappointed to go in at 1-1 at half-time, after we scored the best goal of the game. We have been consistently inconsistent and we wanted ten minutes at the start of the second half to keep it tight, but we then gave away a second goal.”