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Fixture News

Close: That Will Take Some Beating

Midfielder not sure Wembley win can be topped

3 April 2019

Ben Close celebrates winning the Checkatrade Trophy for Pompey
Photo: Joe Pepl

He is admittedly in the fledgling stage of his career as a professional footballer.

But Ben Close is not sure he will ever be able to top the feeling of securing the Checkatrade Trophy with Pompey.

The in-form midfielder started at Wembley and looked assured throughout a contest that the Blues eventually won on penalties following a 2-2 draw after 120 minutes.

And playing at a packed national stadium is an experience that Close was determined to make the most of.

He said: “It felt extremely good and celebrating with more than 40,000 fans at the end was just unbelievable.

“That’s the biggest win of my career so far – although it’s been a pretty short one to date – and I’m not sure if there will be many better days.

"It’s something you always dream about, but you don’t actually think it’s going to happen. It means everything."

Ben Close

“Playing on the pitch at Wembley with all your friends and family in attendance will definitely take some beating.

“It’s something you always dream about, but you don’t actually think it’s going to happen. It means everything.

“We’re a team that’s hungry for success and I think we showed that with the way we came out after the first half.

“Sunderland had been the better team and earned their lead, but our performance after that meant we deserved the win.”

Close limped off during the second period of extra-time, but should be fit for Saturday’s league trip to Wycombe.

He said: “It was just cramp – there was obviously a lot of running involved because it was such a big occasion and I couldn’t continue.”


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