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Home / News / MATCH REPORT / U23's Suffer Semi-Final Defeat To Deal

U23's Suffer Semi-Final Defeat To Deal


By Paul Meade

Cup holders Margate U23’s bowed out of this season’s Kent Intermediate Cup with a late winner from a hard working Deal Town side, as they fell to a narrow 3-2 defeat on Tuesday night.

In front of a healthy crowd of 280 and on a remarkably good pitch considering the recent rainfall the scene was set.

It was Deal, however, that started the brighter of the two sides as they attacked with pace and were strong in the challenge. Margate U23’s struggled to compete and found it difficult to play their own positive attacking style.

The deadlock was broken by a quick throw on the left in the 9th minute resulting in the opposition forward turning to easily and firing past Freddie Marsh’s near post.

Deal continued to attack into the later stages of the half, with no real threat from Margate, as Deal scored their second goal on 28 minutes from a far post corner that wasn’t dealt with by the ‘Gate’s defence.

It could have easily been 3-0 when a Deal striker found himself through after a long ball but Marsh was quick of his line to block.

Margate soon started playing some nice attacking play with good work down the left as Llewen Campbell found Wes Hennessy and his thunderous strike across the keeper in 40th minute made it 2-1 at halftime.

Margate knew that they had now something to build on but needed to start the second half much brighter and sharper. They did with Louie Procopi and Zak Jobe becoming a constant threat on the wings. It was Procopi who’s great solo run and cross found Sam Belsey in the penalty area who couldn’t find a shot himself before setting it back for Hennessy to strike hard and low in the 65th minute leaving the Town keeper helpless as it went 2-2 .

Margate now had the momentum and had all the possession with Jack Miller driving his players on in the centre. Another fine cross from the right was met by Zak Jobe who’s brilliant effort crashed against the bar.

With all the possession the young ‘Gate side needed to score the third in this period of play and on 75 minutes they thought they had it, but a scramble in the six-yard box looked like going in but was cleared off the line.

‘Gate’s chances continued and Reece Grieg hit the post with a header which then followed with a headed over the bar from a left wing cross.

Deal became more of a threat again after this and started to claw their way back into the half., with many long balls played over the top of the ‘Gate defence, this gave Deal more goal scoring opportunities. It was some brilliant defending from Nathan Geddes and Robson Hulks that denied them.

Despite the resolute defending, the back-line could do nothing in the 86th minute as a free-kick wasn’t fully cleared from Marsh and as the ball was headed back towards goal the Town reacted first and scrambled the ball into the net ultimately sealing the 3-2 win.

Despite showing great character coming back from 2- down in a cup semi-final this was a tough part of their learning and development but should feel proud of contributing to a fantastic and entertaining game in front of a big crowd.

Wednesday, 29 March 2023
By MFC Media

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