INFINITY BEAT PAULSGROVE TO REACH HPFL FINAL
28th February 2018 - Infinity FC
Infinity FC have progressed to the final of the Hampshire Premier League Cup after beating Paulsgrove 4-3 on penalties.
Going into the game, Infinity were under no illusions and were expecting a very tough and physical affair, even after running out as 5-1 winners against Paulsgrove earlier in the season.
The hosts started the game on the front foot and caused Paulsgrove all sorts of problems, which soon told when Infinity took the lead. Danny Phillips was set away down the left hand side and he expertly placed the ball past the visiting keeper from a tight angle.
Infinity continued to press Paulsgrove and scored a second goal when Gary Horswell raced away to be one on one with the Paulsgrove keeper, where he passed the ball across the goal for Phillips to tap into an empty net - only for the goal to be ruled out for a controversial offside decision.
In the last 10 minutes before half time, the tide changed and it was Paulsgrove who looked the more threatening.
They made the pressure count right before the end of the half after Infinity lost possession in midfield. The ball was quickly played to their left winger who shifted it and struck a thunderous shot which went in at the near post via a hand from Simon Parker and the underside of the bar.
The second half started the same as the game began and Infinity almost immediately restored their lead after some excellent play by debutant Jamie White. He picked out Gary Fitzhorswell who in turn squared the ball for Phillips to double his tally with his hip from close range.
The home side again created more chances and should have extended their lead but were made to rue these chances with 10 minutes to play. A good turn in the box created a shooting opportunity from close range which Parker saved brilliantly, only for the rebound the fall kindly to an onrushing Paulsgrove player to smash home from 6 yards.
Infinity made a change soon after with Fitzhorswell making way for Filippos Terzidis. This substitution had an immediate impact as Filippos won a race to head the ball on and be clear on goal, only to be clattered by the Paulsgrove defender who got away with a caution.
A few minutes later FIilippos again won a race to the ball and would have had just the keeper to beat but was ferociously upended by the Paulsgrove centre back which again was only deemed a caution.
With a final score of 2-2, the game would be decided on penalties. First up was the very impressive, man of the match, Callum Parker who smashed it top left past the keeper.
Paulsgrove dispatched their penalty bottom left before up stepped James Fry who also smashed his past the keeper. Paulsgrove made the first mistake, sending their spot kick wide of the left post but Andrew Powell was next and his penalty was too close to the left of the keeper who saved comfortably.
The visitors next penalty was hit well to Parkers' left but he brilliantly saved before Phillips effort was hit hard and low to the keepers right who got a hand to it but that wasn’t enough to keep it out.
Paulsgrove kept the pressure on by converting again. The scene was set for the home side's big signing and debutant White to win the game for Infinity. With the help from some poor keeping, he converted the spot kick and Infinity progress to the final.
At present, the Hampshire Premier Football League cup finals are both scheduled to be filmed by South Coast Journalism.
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