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Lemons keep dreams alive

PUBLISHED: 16:00 23 February 2015

FC Leytonstone players celebrate their cup win

FC Leytonstone players celebrate their cup win

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Two victories for FC Leytonstone teams

FC Leytonstone under-nine duo Isaac Rice and Nye BevanFC Leytonstone under-nine duo Isaac Rice and Nye Bevan

FC Leytonstone reached the Inner London Football League cup final last weekend after Ahmed Arab struck late on to earn a thrilling victory against West End.

Goals from Ashrad Coowar and Charles Gyamfi were cancelled out by the visitors to make a penalty shoot-out seem likely before Arab’s late heroics.

West End took the lead inside the opening five minutes after the Lemons failed to defend a corner properly.

But the home side slowly got themselves back into the game and started to control possession.

That led to their equaliser as Coowar fired in from 25 yards to make it all square.

Bradley Williams should have given Leytonstone the lead before the break, but he could only hit the crossbar from close range and it was level at half time.

West End came out the blocks fastest after the interval and regained the lead.

Leytonstone made changes after that goal, introducing Gyamfi shortly afterwards.

And the substitute made his mark by dribbling into the box and being upended, earning his team a penalty with 20 minutes to go.

Gyamfi converted the spot-kick and Leytonstone pushed to get the winning goal.

With time ticking away Arab won the ball and sprinted down the left flank before cutting inside and smashing into the bottom corner to score a goal worthy of winning a semi-final.

Leytonstone saw out the final few minutes to qualify for a first final in three years and reserve team manager Nazim Mahmood said: “This was a really hard game. The whole team fought took and nail and that’s the attitude you need in these cup competitions – tough and brave and with ability and desire.”

Leytonstone under-nines were also victorious at the weekend as they beat Place Pro 2-1, despite awful conditions.

Nye Bevan scored the opening goal from Isaac Rice’s free-kick, a move that had been practised in training. But Place Pro pegged them back before the break.

Rice scored a wonderful free-kick to earn Lemons victory and coach Huw Bevan was pleased with the win, sayng: “We showed composure and steel throughout.


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