Lions A given a Reub awakening
FOOTBALL JOE Zender saluted goalkeeper Reuben Rabstein after the youngster steered Maccabi London Lions under-21s into the semi-finals of the Peter Morrison Trophy following a thrilling victory over ML Lions A.
Rabstein was the hero in the penalty shoot-out after the teams finished deadlocked at 3-3 after extra-time.
The teenage stopper was called into action twice early on before the U21s gained a foothold with clinical finishes from Jack Mattey and Max Kyte.
Zender said: “It was a great game and a phenomenal result — one of the most exciting and remarkable games of football I have ever been involved in.
“Our young lads rose to the challenge physically and mentally. They showed true character in how they acquitted themselves throughout.” The A’s rallied in the second half and drew level thanks to quick-fire strikes from Alex Taylor and Jon Ellis. Rabstein denied them a winner at the death to force an extra 30 minutes. Mattey scored his second of the tie to put the U21s 3-2 up but they were pegged back again by a thunderbolt from Ellis, resulting in penalties. Rabstein then came into his own, keeping out efforts from Adam Arnold and James Gold before Mattey converted the winning effort to spark scenes of wild celebration.
Zender said: “The boys deserve tremendous credit for playing incredibly well and pulling off a remarkable victory. The courage to secure the win on penalties is something truly special. A Lions A spokesman commented: “After a performance full of great belief, determination and strong technical ability, it would be hard to argue that the this young generation didn’t deserve to take something out of the game.
“We must now focus on another inter-club derby against Lions B in what is now a season-defining Cyril Anekstein semi-final.”
LIONS A: David Kosky, Max Hassell, Will Beresford, Jon Ellis, Alex Taylor, Sam Arghebant, Ben Lampert, Harry Marlow, Nathan Schindler, James Gershfield, James Gold. Subs: Brad Sharp, Adam Arnold, Sam Lewis
LIONS U21: Reuben Rabstein, Sam Hamerton, Nathan Anders, Fred Kramer, Mikey Perkins, Max Misrahi, Nick Barnett, Josh Burns, Jack Mattey, Jamie Cohen, Max Kyte. Subs: Charlie Dryer, Jonny Rosen, Jacob Caplin