Villa Park provided an impressive back drop to this season’s Minor Cup Final, thanks to BCFA Kit Supplier Macron Sports.
It was evident from both team’s reactions to being in the dressing rooms at a Premier League Stadium that this was going to be a special experience for them.
Rugby had the better of the opening exchanges and created the first chance of the half as Dylan Tellyn forced Alex Gutheridge into a good save.
Their early pressure paid off in the 8th minute as they moved into the lead.
Good work from Tom Bishop earned Rugby a freekick on the half way line. Harry Dominy found Tellyn who’s flick landed at the feet of Adam Shaw who poked the ball past Gutheridge.
The goal seemed to wake Northfield up and they began to create some chances.
The pace of Dilano Reid on the wing was causing a few problems and his cross found Jordan Masidi, but he fired over from a good position.
Rugby continued to create chances of their own and it took good defending from Kory Roberts to keep them at bay.
Northfield were really growing into the game and the excellent close control of Enbakhare Bright was a joy for the crowd to watch, but they still couldn’t find that elusive goal and went into the half-time break 1-0 down.
Bright had the first chance of the second half, over his good foot work enabled him space to shoot from the edge of the area, but his shot flew narrowly over the bar.
Their increased pressure earned them the goal they needed as Josh Dennis scored with a low hard shot from 25 yards out.
Rugby almost replied straight away, as a long ball forward found Shaw who went past Gutheridge but found the angle too tight to finish.
Arche Pearcey was next to try his luck for Rugby as he did well to connect well with a Dominy corner, but he just couldn’t keep his volley down.
10 minutes from time Bright found himself clear in the box, but he put his shot wide.
He did however redeem himself three minutes later as he jinxed his way through the a number of challenges before calmly slotting the ball past Carlos Gomes to send the Northfield Town fans into raptures.
Shaw did well to break through the middle, and almost put Rugby level again, but he was crowded out by the Northfield Defence just as he pulled the trigger.
This allowed Northfield to break again and Bright settled the game and sealed a fine Man of the Match performance with his second goal.
Credit must go to both teams for the manner in which they played the game and to Rugby who were very gracious in their defeat and stayed on the pitch to applaud Northfield as they celebrated their victory.
Thanks to Macron who generously provided a fantastic venue for what was a fantastic final.
BCFA Offical Photographer Gary Griffiths was present at the final and has captured some wonderful images which are available for purchase here