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ConIFA World Football Cup

WATCH: Karpatalja's amazing World Football Cup victory

18:00 BST 11/06/2018
CONIFA final 09062018
The region from southwestern Ukraine enjoyed an historic day as they saw off Northern Cyprus in a dramatic penalty shootout to become world champions

On a classically grey London evening, 2,500 spectators turned out at Enfield Town to see Karpatalja become CONIFA World Football Cup champions with a thrilling penalty-shootout victory over Northern Cyprus.

Enfield Town’s record attendance had already been broken during the tournament and was shattered once again on Saturday and there was a raucous atmosphere created by passionate supporters of both sides.

Before the game, the two sides were inseparable on the betting markets and the match turned out to be predictably tight. They had already played out a 1-1 draw in the group stages, which was perhaps an indication of the most likely result when they met again in the showpiece.

Over the course of the World Football Cup, Karpatalja had proven themselves a superbly organised outfit, and in the first half they seemed completely at ease with their opponents, setting up to play on the counter with the tricky Gyorgyi Toma left to roam free up the pitch.

Toma was a threatening presence throughout, albeit rarely given a genuine chance to express himself by a well-marshalled Northern Cypriot defence.

The Hungarians’ approach was one they had replicated in most of their previous knockout games, and it proved effective once again. Northern Cyprus’ dangerous centre-forward Billy Mehmet was kept relatively under the thumb, but had the match’s best chance to open the scoring with a diving header at the back post but his effort bounced back off the bar.

Chances, however, were at a premium, and both teams looked tired after six games in just over a week. The game headed inexorably to penalties.

It was Fejer who was to be the hero for Karpatalja, first denying the excellent Mehmet before parrying away Halil Turan's spot-kick and sparking a huge pitch invasion from his side’s delighted players, coaches and supporters.

Karpatalja are deserving winners of the tournament, but Northern Cyprus brought so much colour and noise to their games that it’s hard not to feel for them.