Newbold’s saves put Rangers in final
TOM NEWBOLD rose – or rather flung himself – to the challenge of a penalty shoot-out last night to book Rangers a place in the Rawlinson Cup final against Rovers.
Nathan Thomson’s men came from a goal down at half-time to deservedly take their semi-final to spot kicks after the match finished 1-1 in the 90 minutes and it was their goalkeeper who emerged the hero, saving from Jacques Wilcox and Rory Moriarty – both times diving to his right – while the Rangers penalty-takers were faultless, progressing 4-2.
The match itself was a good pre-season workout for both sides and their contrasting styles.
Rangers were typically assertive, winning most the aerials battles and getting the ball forward early to utilise their willing runners up top.
Vale Rec were more patient in their build-up play although it often broke down in the final third with passers on a different wavelength to their targets, but that will be ironed out as they get more game time.
It was Rec who took the lead in the 39th minute when Glenn Le Tissier helped the ball into the path of Zach Masterton-Pipet and the pacey forward drove into the box before slotting a composed finish past Newbold.
After the half-time interval, Rangers created a couple of decent chances before Callum Cummins-Wall netted a merited equaliser just after the hour-mark, capitalising on some hesitancy in the Vale defence to nip in, pinch the ball and poke it past Steve Balmer.