Tony Pennock Hails His Haverfordwest Heroes After More Penalty Drama in Europe

Haverforwest players celebrate Lee Jenkins' equaliser. Pic: HCFC.

Tony Pennock Hails His Haverfordwest Heroes After More Penalty Drama in Europe


By Paul Jones

Haverfordwest County manager Tony Pennock hailed his club’s achievement as “amazing” after they won on a historic night in Europe.

County secured a thrilling victory in the UEFA Europa Conference League second qualifying round against KF Shkendija, prevailing in a tense penalty shootout.

The Bluebirds had already shown their penalty prowess in previous domestic games against Cardiff Met and Newtown, and they repeated their spot-kick success to overturn a 0-1 deficit from the first leg.

In the 89th minute, Lee Jenkins became the hero of the night, sending the Cardiff City Stadium crowd of 1,716 fans into a state of ecstasy with a deflected effort that brought the score level and took the game to extra time.

“Just getting into Europe this season was huge for us but to have another round is just amazing, for everyone involved with the club,” said Pennock.

“The boys put in an unbelievable shift against a very good side and when you’ve got belief and you stick together, anything can happen.

“We will enjoy this result and then regroup for the next round. But right now it’s hard to put into words what this means for everyone.”

The shoot-out saw another stellar performance from Haverfordwest’s goalkeeper, Zac Jones.

He made a crucial save with his legs against Eraldo Cinari and followed it up by diving to his right to deny Florent Ramadani’s decisive final penalty.

Despite their earlier loss in North Macedonia, Haverfordwest started the match on a bright note. Jazz Richards, the team’s captain for the night, played a vital role, but the visitors managed to keep their defense tight.

Both teams had their moments during the regular and extra time, with Haverfordwest creating several goal-scoring opportunities. However, Jones made some fantastic saves to keep his team in the tie.

As the match ended in a draw, the tension mounted during the penalty shootout.

Unfortunately, Haverfordwest’s Hawkins missed the opening penalty. Still, they quickly bounced back with Kransniqi and Richards successfully converting their kicks.

Jones then displayed his goalkeeping prowess, saving Cinari’s low shot with his feet. Wilson and Whitmore scored identical penalties into the top right-hand corner, while Adili hit the post for Shkendija.

With the score at 3-2 in favor of Haverfordwest, Fawcett had a chance to secure the victory, but he put his penalty over the bar.

However, Jones ensured the team’s progress by guessing correctly and denying Ramadani’s attempt.

The dramatic shootout victory meant that Haverfordwest County AFC advanced to the next round of the UEFA Europa Conference League, sparking joyous Welsh celebrations.


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