Farnham manager Paul Johnson paid tribute to the club’s supporters after Town reached the final of the Southern Combination Cup in dramatic fashion at The Memorial Ground.

Lewis Flatman was the extra-time hero last Friday as Town held their nerve to beat Combined Counties Premier Division North outfit Virginia Water 3-1 and seal their place in the final.

Farnham got off to the ideal start and went ahead when Lamin Ceesay fired home into the bottom right-hand corner, but Jack Mills’ penalty made it 1-1 at half-time. Town had chances to win the game in the second half, but the tie went to extra time.

Flatman made the crucial breakthrough on 107 minutes when he swivelled neatly in the box and hit his effort into the bottom corner.

Flatman sealed Farnham’s win three minutes later when he poked home the rebound after Ceesay’s header had hit the crossbar.

Johnson was delighted to get through and paid tribute to the role Town’s supporters played.

“It was a good way to win – it brings everyone together a little bit more, particularly the supporters,” said Johnson.

“I thought we made hard work of it. We looked comfortable – they didn’t look like hurting us – but at the same time we only had a couple of moments.

“The crowd behind the goal, especially in the second half of extra time, pulled us towards them. We made only one change at the start of extra time, so credit to the boys and credit to the supporters. It was a solid team performance to get us through.

“We said before the second half of extra time that it was important we got the ball out wide, doubled up, and kept feeding the ball into the box.

“We said something would fall for us – it was a great touch by Lewis on the turn to finish it off.”

Johnson has ambitions to challenge for promotion next season, and hopes reaching the final can be an important stepping stone for his young side.

“We were a little bit naive – and if you look at the spine of Virginia Water’s team they had a core of experience, so massive credit to the boys,” said Johnson.

“Most of our team have probably not played in a semi-final to get to a final, so it means the world to them.

“We want to go on to bigger and better things than the Combination Cup, so there’s a lot more pressure coming. It’s a good one to get under our belt though.”

Farnham will entertain Combined Counties Premier Division South outfit Balham at The Memorial Ground in the Southern Combination Cup final next Wednesday (May 10). Kick-off is at 7.45pm.