Rochdale's Asia FC are the North West football champions after winning this year's Asian Image cup.

Of the six teams competing for the Cup, Asia had been outside favourites to win through.

They will now go on to represent the North West at the National Asian Football championships in Scotland next month.

In their final group game they needed a draw to qualify for the final and were trailing by two goals to Nelson's Paak United with only fifteen minutes remaining.

But in a topsy-turvy closing five minutes Asia scored twice to book their place in the final.

That victory seemed to instill a new sense of confidence in the team that had looked far from convincing despite beating Fishwick Rangers 3-0 in their first game.

Fishwick performed admirably in their first few games at this level and may have found themselves a new keeper. FIaz Ahmed's goalkeeping heroics will ensure he has a new position when he decides to hang up the striker's boots.

In group B, Canaries and United shared the spoils in their first game. Canaries then threw away a 2-0 lead against Glasgow Ansar before Illyas Mal popped up to score the winner.

It left Blackburn United needing to win by two clear goals to reach the final and despite leading only 2-1 at half-time. Second half goals by Patel and Amran eased them to victory.

Fitness was a deciding factor on the outcome of results and this was more apparant as it turned out that the clubs who had a break in the middle of the day reached the final.

The final played at Nelson football ground on Sunday began as a nervous and cagey affair with both sides failing to create any clear-cut chances. For the first hour United seemed to be the more likely to score.

Javed Master went close and hit both posts and Nasir Hussain broke free a number times but failed to play the killer pass.

Asia for all their endeavors weathered the storm and the introduction of Abid Uddin turned the game in their favour. As soon he took to the pitch he had an impact creating a sense of panic in the United back-four.

It was his cross that saw Asia squander the game's best chance.

United however may well have won if it had not been for the head of Shahid Khalique who blocked a powerful goal-bound shot by left-back Harun Hussain.

As the game headed towards extra-time a contentious penalty gave Asia the opportunity to settle the fixure. Uddin stepped forward cooly slotted home the ball past desparing keeper Iqbal and the celebrations could begin.