Jersey remain in trophy hunt after narrow win over Northern Ireland
Jersey boosted their hopes of winning the inaugural Jacksons International Trophy on home turf after a hard-fought 1-0 win over Northern Ireland on Saturday.
The visitors had gone close to an early opener at Springfield but the ball rebounded off the post into the grateful arms of goalkeeper Euan Van der Vliet.
Both sides took a while to settle and chances were few and far between. Sol Solomon saw his effort deflected behind on the stroke of half time.
Jersey manager Martin Cassidy introduced target man Craig Russell at the break, with the home side fielding him in the same 11 as Karl Hinds, Kieran Lester and Sol Solomon - the potential for a winner was certainly there.
It was another attacking player though who finally made the breakthrough. As Northern Ireland complained about a throw, Adam Trotter fed substitute Jake Prince who was alert and fired it low past Declan Brown to give Cassidy's men the lead with a little over 10 minutes remaining.
Brown was forced off injured soon after and Jersey held strong to go top of the table for a few hours at least.
In Saturday's other match in the tournament the Republic of Ireland claimed a 2-1 victory against Middlesex Wanderers, with Craig Walsh netting twice for the Irish to maintain their 100 percent record. It means the winners of Sunday's clash between the Republic of Ireland and Jersey will lift the trophy.
Earlier on Saturday Jersey's veterans side (photo below) had beaten their counterparts from Middlesex Wanderers 2-1 thanks to second half goals from Chris Andrews and Peter Worrell.
On Sunday, Northern Ireland take on Middlesex Wanderers (midday) before Jersey host the Republic of Ireland at 4pm in the title decider (both games at Springfield).
Photos: With thanks to Adrian Topley
Jersey: Euan Van der Vliet, Michael Weir, Jay Giles, Jack Cannon (c), Luke Campbell, Kamen Nafkha, Sol Solomon, Adam Trotter, Kieran Lester, Karl Hinds, Fraser Barlow.
Subs: George Glithero, Connor O'Shea, Jake Prince, Harry Cardwell, Danny Birrell.
Northern Ireland: Declan Brown, Jamie Rea, Lee McNulty, Adam Wright, Dylan Wilson, Richard Clarke (c), Eoin Kane, Thomas Robinson, Daniel Burns, Adam Gray, Nathaniel Ferris.
Subs: John Connolly, Scott McMillan, William Armstrong, Curtis Woods, Jordan Gibson, Ryan Campbell, Emmett McGuckin.