Marine manager Neil Young has expressed his delight after reaching his first Liverpool Senior Cup final.
Louis Britton’s hat-trick helped them past Southport in the semi-final in front of 1,604 fans at the Marine Travel Arena.
Jordan Lussey opened the scoring with a penalty after Sol Solomon was brought down by Chris Doyle. Their lead lasted 40 minutes until Tyler Walton equalised for the visitors but the tie was level for only a matter of minutes.
Britton netted twice in eight minutes to fire the clash beyond their rivals grasp and added a third late on to add gloss to their progression.
The Mariners can win their first Liverpool Senior Cup trophy since 2008 should they overcome Runcorn Linnets – in a repeat of last season’s Northern Premier League West playoff final.
“Delighted but more delighted for the performance. Performance-wise it was excellent, to win the game at home – it’s something to look forward to at the end of the season,” he said speaking to Off The Park.
“We played well, particularly when the ball broke down. The front lads, any two of the three were lively, Sol was unplayable at times tonight and that happens if you let him turn and facing you, you’ve got problems – he was excellent.
“It’s unfortunate he never got a goal but the whole team were fantastic. You look at young Will Johnson who played right-back for us tonight, Joe Bunney has come in after a thumb and facial injury.
“But I’m made up, Mark Howarth, Lucas Weir, Jordan Lussey – probably his best game for us I think overall – any two of the front three that played were lively and caused problems.
“We dug in, playing against a team from the league above – they’re a very good side with some excellent players – you’re going to deal with different challenges, ways you’ve got to work things out – the lads worked things out.” Young added on what pleased him most about the performance.
“We nullified most of their threats, we wasn’t going to do it all the time but we stood up and were counted. We put out a big side because we knew we were going to combat throws into the box and that’s what we did.
“Generally, once we got on the ball we caused them a few problems, they’re a very good side. It’s not easy playing Saturday and Monday for both teams but tonight, we’ve come out as winners, we’re in a cup final, that’s great and on Wednesday, hopefully they put themselves in the final of the Lancashire Cup.
“Winning football matches breeds confidence, winning football matches against sides in a higher league, good sides, good football clubs with good people always helps. Tonight, we dug in, a great crowd – both sets of supporters.
“The most pleasing thing was to score the way we did after we were on top then conceded a sloppy goal. Louis has had to come on because Joe’s tweaked his hamstring and helps himself to a hat-trick.”