SCORES ON THE DOORS
RUNCORN Linnets' under 12s Sunday Blue team suffered cup final heartbreak at Chester FC's Deva Stadium at the weekend.
Despite having the lion's share of the possession, playing the more eye-catching football and creating by far the better goal scoring opportunities (particularly in the first half), the Blues lost their prestige Chester and District JFL Knockout Cup final with Blacon Youth 2-1.
But Linnets still have a chance of securing silverware success in what is their debut season with the Blues locking horns with Waverton in the League Cup semi-finals on Sunday.
Hopefully their luck will change for that one.
Jake Schwarze was particularly unlucky in the cup final. He had a brilliant strike tipped over the bar, saw another one crash against the crossbar and then bounce down on to the goal line and was agonisingly close to successfully chipping Blacon's keeper when clean through on goal - all before the opposition had had a shot.
That shot saw Blacon take the lead completely against the run of play towards the end of the first half following a break down the left wing and a perfectly weighted low cross.
Speedster Josh Senior had two good shouts for a penalty turned down as Blacon struggled to deal with his immense pace.
Other chances came and went and it was apparent that it was not going to be Linnets' day when Blacon went 2-0 early in the second half with a smart finish following a double whammy of defensive errors.
An improvised far post finish from Alfie Hayes after a pinpoint delivery out wide by Josh Senior gave Linnets renewed hope, only for the linesman to disallow the goal for off-side
A Linnets goal finally came with just a few minutes left on the clock, with Jake Schwarze helping to bundle the ball home at the far post from a corner.
But despite a large contingent of Linnets family members and friends willing a second goal to take the game into extra time, Blacon held on to lift the cup and enjoy champagne spraying celebrations.
Football can be a cruel game sometimes but all 12 of the young Linnets players can hold their heads up high. They did themselves, their coaches and their families proud in the cup final, as they have all season.