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Dave Diaper hailed a ‘band of brothers’ spirit as Sholing lifted the FA Vase after a dream win at Wembley.

The Southampton side defeated West Auckland 1-0 to secure the trophy in what was Diaper’s swansong after 15 years as Sholing boss.

A number of his players are also retiring following the win.

A delighted Diaper said: “The last ten minutes put me through a different range of emotions but I was very pleased for the lads.

“I’ve been at the club now for 15 years and everything we do is based on a good work ethic.

“This group of players which I’ve got together only lost four league games all season and never know when they’re beat.

“You can see the camaraderie out there. They say ‘band of brothers’ and it is that – it’s a close knit family.

“It was really fitting on my last day in charge as well. I couldn’t wish for a better ending so happy days.”

He added: “I have mixed emotions. The guys really put us through it second half.

“I felt at half time we really needed to up our game by at least 10-15 per cent because I felt the game was probably slipping away from us.

“They put us under a lot of pressure with balls into the box which our goalkeeper dealt with really well.

“At the end of the day I think we got our just rewards really.

“We created one or two more chances than they did first half and I was just relived to hear the final whistle because they put us under a tremendous amount of pressure.

“When they struck the upright I had the feeling our name was on the cup.”