Fourteen-goal thrillers are few and far between and Poulton FC U13s won an unforgettable one against Thornton Blues in the first round of the Hogan Plate.
Spare a thought for Thornton’s Ellis Wilson, who scored five and still finished on the losing side in this classic at Cottam Hall playing fields.
There were four for Poulton’s Declan Bond, including a ‘perfect’ hat-trick of left-foot shot, right-foot shot and header.
Poulton manager Ban Ankers said: “It’s the first time we’ve conceded six, but doesn’t feel so bad when you still win.”
Despite scoring first, Poulton fell 3-1 behind before hitting back to lead 5-3 at half-time.
The Blues made a spirited start to the second half to pull level only for Thornton to re-establish their two-goal cushion at 7-5.
Thornton again cut the deficit to one and the game was in the balance once more until Poulton’s eighth goal sealed their place in the second round.
Striker Josh Hampson scored two in an exellent performance up from for Poulton, while wide men Jamie Elliot and Harrison Bailey were both awarded for their fine displays with a goal apiece.
If anyone didn’t deserve to bow out of the cup it was five-goal striker Wilson, who was joined on the scoresheet by Aaron Clingan
Poulton still have 14 league games to squeeze in between cup games, which include an eagerly awaited Lancashire FA Cup final against Holker Old Boys on Sunday week.
Thornton boss Mason Seddon wishes them all the best in that cup final but had nothing but praise for his own side’s performance in last Sunday’s tie.
“We were disappointed with our first-half performance,” he said, “despite going 3-1 up. But the players were really fired up at half-time and showed a lot of character in the second half.
“It was an unbelievable game and I didn’t see it as a loss. It’s a shame someone had to go out.”
And manager Seddon is delighted at the way his Thornton side have turned their season around.
They won three successive league matches going into this cup tie and aim to kick on for the rest of the campaign.
Poulton boss Ben Ankers said: “This was an amazing game on a very heavy pitch. I was a bit worried at 3-1 down but the lads never let their heads go down.”
Playing off the frontman with clinical efficiency, Declan Bond was the Poulton man of the match, taking his four goals in perfect style
Wilson netted five for Thornton but right-sided midfielder PJ Allen was their manager’s choice as Thornton man of the match because he made a massive difference in the second half.