Ten-man FC Panda defeat Siddal on penalties to clinch Sunday Cup

Panda captain Yaser Mohammed with the cup
Panda captain Yaser Mohammed with the cup

Premier Division champions FC Panda won a highly charged Halifax FA Sunday Cup Final 7-6 on penalties over Siddal Place at The Shay.

Panda started well with some fine controlled football but a stubborn Siddal Place defence limited early chances.

Panda went ahead when a good run by Sameer Ahmed ended with him squaring the ball to give Terriq Parvez a simple tap in.

After receiving a yellow card for a poor challenge Ashan Farouq repeated the same sort of challenge minutes later and picked up a second booking. With only fifteen minutes played Panda faced a tough 75 minutes to play with ten men.

David Oakes gave Siddal a great chance to go in front but his defence splitting pass to Wayne Crossley was lost when he lobbed over the bar when one on one with the keeper.

Panda were showing no signs of being over run and only a great block by Dave Walker prevented them going ahead. Minutes later Liam Senior made two great tackles to prevent Terriq Parvez from scoring.

Damon Nichols-Gledhill blazed over the bar as Siddal responded. Tom Hall was trying hard to get Siddal back in the game with some intelligent play going forward and some good defensive work.

The second half was only two minutes old when Siddal drew level good play down the left from Ashley Shaw provided Carlto Balmer with the easiest of finishes. Another Shaw effort was tipped onto the bar before dropping into the keepers hands.

Panda still looked the more comfortable on the ball with Ibrar Farouq catching the eye in midfield. Panda had reverted to three at the back and Callum Charlton was outstanding with a cool calm display of defending and intelligent distribution.

Both sides were all out to find the winner but each wasted some good chances to win it. In a sometimes fiery final, referee Phil Higgins and his assistants kept full control and both teams got on with playing their football.

The 90 minutes ended 1-1 before FC Panda won the penalty shootout with seven perfect penalties to Siddals' six.

Panda are now on course for a treble of league, Sunday Cup and Senior Cup, with a final against Waiters Arms in the Senior Cup on Sunday.

FC Panda; Y.Mohammed, A. Farouq, C. Charlton,A. Baker-Dar, F.Ahmed, W.Raja, S.Ahmed, K.Shazad, T.Parvez, O.Mohammed, I.Farrouq. Subs; R.Ahmed, I.Ahmed, K.Akmal, A.Khan, O.Riaz

Siddal Place; R.Shirtliffe, L.Senior, J.Prestage, T.Hall, D.Walker, D.Oakes, A.Shaw, D.Gledhill-Nichols, W.Crossley, C.Balmer, M.Boon. Subs; R.Youell, D.Camp, A.McDonald, D.Tuck