Mangos lift county cup

MANGOTSFIELD United ended the football season on a high note by winning the Gloucestershire FA Challenge Trophy.

The Mangos’ 3-2 win over Cheltenham Saracens at Almondsbury made it two trophies in the last two seasons, after winning the Hellenic League Cup last year.

A whirlwind opening 20 minutes saw the Mangos take a 3-0 lead, with two goals from leading goalscorer Jadyn Crosbie and one from 17-year-old Jack Nunn.

The opener came from a penalty in the 12th minute: Will Ashton was brought down in the box as he was taking a shot, and Crosbie stepped up to convert from the spot.

Two minutes later Nunn made it two after being put clean through in the box.

He then provided the pass for Crosbie score the third in the 19th minute, evading challenges with some fantastic footwork.

Saracens got a goal back before half time and made it 3-2 on 56 minutes.

The last 35 minutes saw both sides come close, with Crosbie seeing a goal disallowed and a shot hit the post, while Saracens had a penalty shout waved away and Mangos keeper Dominic Oakes tipped another over the bar with great athleticism.

But despite a tense last half hour Saracens could not find an equaliser and had a player sent off in stoppage time as the Mangos saw out the game.

The match came just two days after Mangotsfield lost the semi-final of another competition, the Marsh Cup, on penalties to Corsham Town.

The Wiltshire side had finished second in the Hellenic League Premier Division, 11 places above the Mangos.

Corsham took the lead through Dean Griffiths on 38 minutes, Mangotsfield battled well and matched them all the way, with Mircea Llea levelling on 53 minutes.

There was little to choose between the teams for the rest of the game, but Corsham were reduced to 10 men with five minutes to go, when Leon Greenland was sent off for denying a goal-scoring opportunity. 

Extra time brought no break in the deadlock, and the dreaded penalty shoot-out was a close one, but the Mangos lost 7-6.

Corsham went on to the final two weeks later, where another penalty shoot-out success earned them the Marsh Cup, after a 2-2 draw with promoted champions Worcester City.

Attention now moves to the Mangos’ ground improvements, with funding secured for the new 3G all-weather pitch at Cossham Street. 

The Club have asked for all opening league matches next season to be played away from home until the new pitch is ready, and will have to wait and see if cup matches are affected when the draws for the FA Cup and FA Vase are made in July.

Match report details from Mangotsfield United