APPEARING in their first league cup final at Edgar Street, home of Hereford United, the Swifts U11s were in a confident mood, having finished runner-ups in the league.


(Swifts won on penalties)

The game started at a good pace, Swifts were first to threaten when Tom Messam put Alex Morgan through but the Wellington keeper reacted quickest to collect the pass. Wellington were soon down the other end testing the Swifts' defence, keeper Clarke Gardner was confident with his handling and kicking.

It was ten minutes before Wellington forced the first corner, an indication of how well Neely Florence, Tom Greening, Aaron Hall and Alaistair were containing the opposition forwards.

Swifts slowly began to gain the upper hand, Olive Ford and Richard Watkins probing from midfield created chances for Alex, Tom and Dean Lee, who hit the first shot on target at either end on 15 minutes. Wellington were dangerous on the break though and were awarded another dangerous free kick on the edge of the Swifts' penalty area, the resultant kick cleared the bar without troubling Clarke.

With half time approaching Tom Jackson replaced Ashley Wadley and had an immediate impact with a long pass wide to Dean Lee who left the full back for dead and hit a first time left foot cross into the area, where Alex Morgan was arriving to head past the keeper.

The large Ledbury contingent in the crowd erupted with joy. Swifts tried to press home their advantage, Alex went close again and Tom Jackson hit a post but half time arrived with just the one goal separating the sides.

Changes were made at half time, Ben Park replaced Tom Green, as manager Richard Hall gave all the squad an opportunity to sample the atmosphere. Wellington pressed from the kick-off and poor defending gave the Wellington winger, Tom Pavey time and space to score the equaliser.

Both sides pressed heard for a breakthrough, Richard Watkins and Alex Morgan combined well but his shot was blocked, at the other end Aaron Hall was having a tidy game, Wellington had one clear chance but the shot cleared the bar.

Ben Gwyther came on for Neely and Ben Adams replaced Richard, the changes gave Swifts some impetus and another long ball from Tom Jackson found Alex who turned the centre half and shot across the keeper in to the far corner with five minutes remaining.

Wellington pressed down their right and a deep cross was turned into the net off the forward's chest to equalise.

The referee soon signalled full time, which meant a penalty shoot out.

Swifts won the toss and went first, Ben Park scoring well, Wellington equalised with a fine strike into the corner. Captain Aaron Hall was next and didn't disappoint, Wellington's second was driven over the bar.

Alex Morgan had his shot saved but the referee ruled the keeper had moved, so the kick was retaken, Alex made no mistake the second time. Wellington then scored.

Keeper Clarke Gardner was next up for Swifts and showed he can score them as well as save them with a well-placed shot into the corner. Wellington scored, although Clarke nearly saved it. Dean Lee was last up for Swifts knowing if he scored Swifts would lift the cup, he kept his nerve driving the ball into the bottom left corner.

Thanks to all the supporters who made the trip and who have followed the team throughout the season.