ROSS Juniors are through to the semi-final of the North Gloucestershire League’s George Sandoe Cup after booking their place with a 2-0 victory over Broadwell Amateurs A at the King George V playing field in Coleford on Saturday (February 24).

Given the two sides’ position in Division One of the North Gloucestershire League – Juniors are second while Broadwell are in the relegation zone – it was not as clear cut as the form book may have suggested.

The home side were on the front foot for much of the first half but failed to convert any of several chances.

Ross also had opportunities but also could not hit the target and the half ended goalless.

Substitute Jack Stalley broke the deadlock with the opening goal just after a quarter of an hour of the second period when his header found the target.

Juniors were now on top and had a strong shout for a penalty when Florin Crainic went down in the box but the referee waved played on.

But Sam Thorne gave Ross a two-goal cushion with the second a few minutes from the whistle.

Temporary manager Ben Scotford said he was pleased with the result despite a lacklustre first half.

He said: “I thought we were sloppy in the first half and Broadwell wanted it a bit more.

“We didn’t play our football in the first half and played into their hands.

“In the second half we upped the tempo and played our own football and got the result.

“Great ball in from Matty (Darwin), who guided into the back post where Jack Stalley just lifted it over the keeper with a header.

“For the second Jack Stalley pulling the ball across the face of the goal and Sam Thorne tapped it in.”

Juniors are back in league action on Saturday when they will hope to welcome fifth-placed Blakeney to the Ross Sports Centre – where they have not had a game since Christmas because of flooding.

Ross are 10 points behind Lydbrook Athletic Reserves in pole position but have played five games fewer.

That will mean a tough run-in to the end of the season as they attempt to clear up the fixture backlog and earn a second straight promotion in the North Gloucestershire League.

Juniors came up with Lydbrook last season and were denied the championship by a single point.

And that is something they will certainly be looking to rectify at the end of this campaign.