Folly Lane Old Boys v Whitnash Town

6.30pm  26 May 2015

Coventry Alliance, Premier Division
Folly Lane Old Boys 2 Whitnash Town 2 (att 355)

If you wanted a thrilling climax to a football season then Folly Lane's London Road ground, in Coventry, was the place to be.

Going into this final game, Folly Lane were second, a point behind leaders AEI Rugby, and a point ahead of third place Whitnash. Whoever won this fixture would be champions, while AEI, having completed their games, could only watch from the sidelines hoping for a draw that would seen them crowned champions on goal difference.

They weren't alone on the sidelines. Groundhoppers from far and wide joined a huge turnout of locals, lining a pleasant park pitch that was roped off on both touchlines. Folly Lane's changing rooms and clubhouse are on the other side of the busy London Road.

Folly Lane started on the front foot, but while they enjoyed most of the possession it was Whitnash who looked more dangerous. It was the visitors who went in front, after about 30 minutes, but Folly Lane equalised shortly before half time.

Their celebrations took an unfortunate turn though, as a ball volleyed in the direction of a Whitnash follower earned Folly Lane a red card.

A man advantage should have handed the initiative to Whitnash, but a soft penalty early in the second half put the home side 2-1 up. As the game neared its end Folly Lane players tired, suffering from their numerical disadvantage. Whitnash pressure was finally converted into a goal with less than 10 minutes left.

That set up an exciting final few minutes, as both sides pushed forward in search of a title-winning goal. A clear penalty, in stoppage time, gave Whitnash the perfect opportunity to win (and a resulting scuffle saw another red card as Folly Lane finished with nine men).

But the penalty was saved, and in the final seconds neither team could muster a goal and so the small contingent from AEI Rugby were celebrating at the final whistle. Great stuff!

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