The Netherlands were crowned the BT Paralympic World Cup 7-a-side Football Champions after defeating the Republic of Ireland 3-2 in a very tight encounter.
Netherlands took the lead thanks to another fine finish from the tournaments top goal scorer Iljas Visker and the men in orangle doubled their advantage from the spot, but the Irish pulled one back just before the interval through captain Gary Messett.
Striker Neil Moran who scored two against Great Britain in Ireland’s previous match levelled the score but with minutes to go Jeffrey Bruinier’s sealed the win for Netherlands with a free-kick.
Goalscorer Iljas Visker said, “It’s my first tournament, so to come out and be the leading goal scorer is really great. I got a hat-trick against the USA in our previous game but we played well as a team.
I’m so glad to be here, it’s been an amazing experience. The tournament is really well organised and to win such an elite event is such an experience.”
In the days other match Great Britain thumped the United States 8-4 to be crowned bronze medallists. The home nation stormed to a 5-1 lead after just 30 minutes, but they were pegged back after the break thanks to
Great Britian captain Jordan Raynes, who impressed throughout the week with a series of impressive saves, was dissapointed not be competing for a gold medal but is still happy with his teams showing in the first ever 7-a-side football tournament at the Paralympic World Cup.
He said, “The BT Paralympic World Cup has been a reality check for all the lads because we’ve not done as well as we would have hoped, but it’s fantastic to be involved in such a big tournament.
“I think you learn more from a defeat that from a win, which is good for some of the younger lads on the team to experience and realise that it’s not always a smooth experience to compete in an elite tournament like this. We’ll learn from this and become better players.”