Delmonte: Republic cup win sealed with a kiss
Stuart Delmonte was left feeling the love after his Republic of Flixton side shocked Leeds Maccabi 1st in the Peter Morrison Trophy.
Delmonte led the celebrations after goals from Rob Jacobs and Adam Tauber sent the MJSL league leaders into the last 16 of the national competition.
And after seeing off a Leeds side which has enjoyed a stunning start to the Sunday Alliance Premier Division, Delmonte was quick to show his appreciation.
"I'm proud of the players and I hugged and kissed every single one of them," he said. "Both Tony Rosenberg and I are both chuffed with the result. To go to Leeds and play that football and grind out the result that we did, it was great.
"It wasn't always pretty, but I take my hat off to every one of those players from Dan Garman in goal to Rob Jacobs up front.
"There wasn’t one player who shirked a tackle or misplaced a pass. They gave absolutely everything and they were all shattered at the end.
"To get through to the national round is fantastic. We have great facilities, share a ground with Northwich Victoria and it is really wonderful what’s happening here," the 2011 cup winner added.
Co-manager Rosenberg praised the contribution of goalkeeper Garman, who produced save after save to keep his side's lead intact.
"I've been saying for the past three years that the best Jewish goalkeeper in Great Britain is Dan Garman.
"I started playing Jewish football in 1973 and in my time from then up to the present, I’ve seen one guy who was perhaps a bit better.
"He was magnificent but so was our whole back five. The whole team put in a real shift and I’m so proud of them."
Leeds had several opportunities throughout the tie with Dan Seligman hitting the crossbar and numerous other chances going to waste.
And boss Ian Selwyn was left to reflect on a painful exit from the competition.
"We could have played all day and wouldn’t have scored,” said Selwyn.
"Their keeper was in inspired form and we were mugged. We were the better team and also hit the woodwork four times and their keeper pulled off some very good saves. I couldn’t have asked any more of my players."
Elsewhere, Haroldeans crushed Leeds Maccabi 2nd 4-1 with braces from Jamie Harris and Adam Shiffman.