Carshalton All Stars

Carshalton All Stars win the Sunday Premier Cup Final on penalties

After a goalless draw, penalties were required to separate Carshalton and Kensington Town

In the last County Cup Final of the 2022/23 season, Carshalton All Stars defeated Kensington Town 4-3 on penalties to lift the Sunday Premier Cup. 

There was plenty of early pressure from Carshalton, which resulted in several dangerous set pieces. Kensington had to remain alert and be on their toes defensively. 

Kensington saw out this early pressure and managed to win a free kick in the Carshalton half against the run of play. Tobi Faldoi looped in a dangerous ball onto the edge of the area, and a fortunate flick-on resulted in the ball falling to the feet of Ibby Akanbi, who slotted it into the net. However, to Kensington's disappointment, the assistant's flag went up, and Akanbi was called offside. 

Following this opportunity, Kensington's Akanbi, Obinna Ogbonna and Arian Malekina linked up well in the middle of the pitch and started to find their feet in the game. 

Nevertheless, as the first half progressed, Carshalton continued to flood the Kensington box and put them under pressure. Kensington's goalkeeper Mike Power-Simpson was forced to command the backline and claim the ball on multiple occasions. 

Before the stroke of halftime, Carshalton's Louis Chin fired an audacious shot from 25 yards out. However, he was unable to maintain control of the shot, and it flew wide of the left post, leaving the teams at a stalemate. 

Kensington started the second half with greater intensity and put Carshalton on the back foot. In the 53rd minute, a low strike at a distance from Akanbi was impressively tipped onto the post by the Carshalton keeper Riccardo Di Zenzo. 

Moments later, Kensington won a free kick on the edge of the box, which helped maintain this pressure. Kensington's Faldoi attempted to finesse the shot into the top right corner, but the strike had slightly too much loft and hit the crossbar to the relief of the Carshalton defence. 

Carshalton was now looking for the break on the counterattack. A chance arose in the 58th minute with Adam Grant making a darting run into the box. However, this was to no avail as Grant failed to connect with the ball properly, and it travelled wide. 

Later on, a dangerous ball was whipped in from the right flank by Carshalton's Jamie DeCruz. Ebenezer Amissah challenged for it in the air, but as the ball came down, it got stuck under his feet in the 6-yard box, and he was unable to capitalise. Sean David looked to follow up, but Kensington's Power-Simpson came and claimed the ball bravely to keep the score level. 

As the game entered the 76th minute, some brilliant build-up play from the Kensington midfield resulted in a clever ball over the top to Ogbonna, who impressively brought the ball down and got off a shot. Despite this beating the keeper, it struck the near post and parried across the box, eventually being cleared by the Carshalton defence. 

In the final ten minutes, Kensington thought they had a penalty when an incident led to the referee pointing to the spot. However, after a discussion with his assistant, this was overturned, and the game continued. 

Kensington continued to dominate the closing stages of the second half. Depp into additional time, they were almost rewarded as a free kick routine saw Theo Hunte connect with a header. However, this flew across the face of the goal, and the game remained goalless. 

The contest couldn't be decided in regulation time and went straight to penalties. 

Carshalton was the team to step up first. However, after missing two out of five spot kicks, compared to Kensington's one miss, it was in the hands of Kensington to put away their fifth penalty to lift the cup. Up stepped their goalkeeper Power-Simpson whose shot was saved by his counterpart Di Zenzo for Carshalton. 

Now at sudden death, Carshalton's Casey McCabe remained composed and went on to score the next before Jordan Sarfo for Kensington struck the bar and missed his chance – ultimately giving Carshalton the win.

POTM: Paris Hamilton Downes

Attendance: 45

Match Officials: 

Referee: Nigel Owen 
Assistant Referee: James Goodall 
Assistant Referee: Scott Orchard 
Fourth Official: Richard Marus 

Carshalton All Stars FC: Riccardo Di Zenzo, Jamie DeCruz, Paris Hamilton Downes, Asa Rixon-Nicholls, Casey McCabe, Johnny Akoto, Louis Chin, Deji Adeosun, Ebenezer Amissah, Sean David, Adam Grant, Dale Hanson-Byatt, Jamie Byatt, Joseph Coker, Zenio Aiken-Simon, Moses Akinranye. 

Kensington Town: Mike Power-Simpson, Tobi Faldoi, Idowu Gbolagade, Joe Ataro, Azzez Elugushi, Elliot Crosbie, Sean Basaye, Ibby Akanbi, Jordan Ikala, Obinna Ogbonna, Arian Malekina, Youel Emmanuel, Albie Sheehan-Cozens, Jordan Sarfo, Theo Hunte, Kwame Pamboe.