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ConIFA World Football Cup

WATCH: Goals galore as Karpatalja come through thrilling semi-final

17:30 BST 08/06/2018
CONIFA Karpatalya 07062018
Karpatalja raced into a three-goal lead in the CONIFA World Football Cup on Thursday but were almost pegged back in an amazing final-four clash

Karpatalja were some people's picks as dark horses after their impressive performance against Cascadia in the CONIFA CONIFA World Football Cup quarter-finals, and they served up a convincing display for the first 75 minutes of their all-Hungarian semi-final versus Szekely Land.

The Carpathians are a well-drilled side, and rarely looked overly troubled by their opponents, yet almost succeeded in throwing away their lead having gone 3-0 up.

This was a cagey affair for the first 30 minutes before the twinkle-toed Gyorgyi Toma - who is another that will be in the shakeup for the Player of the Tournament - notched his first of the day. It was yet another moment of genius from the diminutive attacking midfielder, who danced past four Szekely defenders and slotted home.

Within five minutes, Szekely Land had missed a penalty awarded by referee Mark Clattenburg, with Bela Fejer tipping the spot-kick brilliantly onto the post, allowing his team to go into half-time 1-0 up.

The second-half brought a bit of a goalfest, with Toma completing a brace in the 57th minute, before another penalty - this time for Karpatalja - made it a three-goal game after 75.

Most would have thought it was done and dusted at that point, but the men in blue found something in their locker and pulled two goals back almost immediately after that Karpatalja third. The first of those came from the wonderful Csaba Csizmadia, capped 14 times for Hungary, with Szekely's second courtesy of Barna Bajko.

Csizmadia, a towering presence throughout, would be a central figure in the remaining quarter of an hour, launching a succession of balls into the Karpatalja box and seemingly holding together the Szekely defence almost entirely by himself.

But there was little he could do when, in the third minute of stoppage time added by Clattenburg, Toma again broke down the left and teed up Csaba Peres to seal the deal for Karpatalja with a low finish past Adrian Horvat to secure a 4-2 win.

Despite being rocked late on, Karpatalja looked comfortable for most of the game. They will take a lot of stopping.

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