Bridge Street Hearts 1-4 Swan Lounge (Sunday Junior Trophy Final)

Swan Lounge Lift Essex Sunday Junior Trophy

Bridge Street Hearts 1-4 Swan Lounge, Friday 19th April 2024, Kick-Off 7:45pm, Heybridge Swifts FC, Essex Sunday Junior Trophy Final.

Jake Buckland netted twice as Swan Lounge claimed the 2024 Essex Sunday Junior Trophy with a 4-1 victory against Bridge Street Hearts at Scraley Road, home of Heybridge Swifts FC.

Ben Palmer gave Swan Lounge a 15th-minute lead which they built upon just three minutes later, Buckland claiming his first to make it 2-0. Jamie Panting’s strike a minute before the break added a third and, despite Martin Mixture pulling one back on 79 minutes, Buckland ensured it would become his team’s silverware with his second six minutes from the end.

Swan Lounge Manager, Mitchell Taylor, was overjoyed with the victory at full time, commenting: “I’m over the moon. The boys put in a great performance. I’m buzzing but, at the end of the day, all I do is manage. It goes for those 16 boys that were out there today. They all played for each other, played for the team. I couldn’t ask for any more from them today.”

His team’s account was opened on 15 minutes. A left-wing cross was dropped into the box where Palmer met it to nudge past goalkeeper Matt Goddard. Shortly afterwards, their lead was doubled from another left-sided delivery. This time from a corner, defender/striker Buckland won a battle with the ‘keeper to head home from close range.

From a further set-piece delivery into the danger zone as the half time whistle approached, Panting angled a strike onto the underside of the crossbar and just over the goal line to make it three, with supervision from Jack Stoneham, meaning the Braintree & North Essex Sunday League Division Two pace-setters were well in control at the break.

Clearcut chances are slightly scarcer in the second half, with attacking territory shared more evenly. And there was a sniff of a comeback when Mixture, top scorer for Bridge Street Hearts in the competition this season, dribbled around goalkeeper Lynx Sontag and side-footed into an empty net to put a dent Swan Lounge’s deficit in the 79th minute.

Hearts had come out in the second half and achieved slightly more territory with greater attacking possession. When they got that goal back, Taylor admitted he was concerned: “I could see we were tired. I could see that we needed to make some changes. But having some experienced players out there helps sometimes. We had a good bench and made a couple of changes to see it through.”

Six minutes from full time, Buckland put the game back beyond doubt, firing home from ten yards. That fourth goal was greeted warmly by Taylor, who summarised: “It was a relief! That final whistle was probably the best thing that’s happened all season.”

Bridge Street Hearts: Matt Goddard, Charlie Green, Joe Peters Brad Hibbitt, Martin Mixture, Tommy O’Donnell, Steve Suttling, Sam Mixture, Gareth Williams, Jason Evans, Mitch Evans. Substitutes: Liam Dodsley, Connor Vickery, Dan Gregory, Alfie Monk, Greg Dodsley. Manager: Mitch Evans.

Swan Lounge: Lynx Sontag, Jake Stewart, Jake Buckland, Harry Stoneham, Warren Matema, Ky Richardson, Ben Palmer, Jack Stoneham, Jibril Akinade, Jamie Panting, Liam Whipps. Substitutes: Ollie Makepeace, Glen Matthews, Martin Ingielewicz, Joe Watson, Baillie Mason. Manager: Mitchell Taylor.

Referee: Christopher Rammell (Harlow).

Assistant Referees: Lewis Sibbons (Chelmsford) and Moises Amoes (Waltham Forest).

Fourth Official: Richard Ramjane (Chelmsford).

Attendance: 275.


Hear from the winning manager and view the photos...

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