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Youth Reports 2016-17

30 October 2016


Alexandra Park West 2  Northwood Reds Under 13s 4 (AET)
Challenge Cup Round 2

After having no match last week, the boys really showed the sort of determination, spirit and performance that both John and I know they are capable of with a fine away victory in the second round of the Challenge Cup. The fact the boys came from 2-0 down and had to win the game eventually in extra time adds even more satisfaction.

Northwood lined up with Rayyan in goal a re-shuffled back 4 of Ale, Dan Terry, Lewis Ryan and George, with a midfield 3 of Felipe, Dan Jago and Zaki with Dec and Lewis Reid playing on the wings and the long-awaited return of Ashley up front.

The game did not start that well with AP going 1-0 up after only 2 minutes with a wonder strike from well outside the penalty area that Rayyan did not stand a chance of stopping. The first half then did ebb and flow from end to end with both teams having chances and both goal keepers doing well to keep the score to just 1-0. AP were playing a bit of a more direct game with quite a few long balls over the defence for their front players to run onto. It was from one of these long balls that a lucky bounce and deflection found the AP striker through one on one with Rayyan and he did finish well to make it 2-0 on the 26th minute. This goal did seem to spark the boys into action and after a good combination between Felipe find Lewis Reid in the penalty area and he volleyed home a great left foot finish for it only to be ruled out for offside. Again, the boys went forward and this time Ashley found Lewis Reid in space and this time he finished with his right foot and made it 2-1 just before half time.

AP did start the first half well and put the boys under quite a lot of pressure but the back four stood strong as well as Rayyan who was having a good game in goal. AP were relying very much on the long balls over the top again which were causing some problems AP went very close when one of the forwards connected well and saw his shot that had Rayyan beaten but luckily the ball bounced back off the post and the ball was cleared to safety. Northwood were also making chances but some good defending by AP and a goal keeper also in good form was keeping us from getting the equalizer. As the half was coming to the end with barely 2 minutes left Ashley again put a great ball through for Lewis Reid who finished well one v one with the AP keeper, 2-2 the boys were ecstatic to say the least.

Extra time started and with Northwood sensing that AP were down and after a fine passing move that included 5 different players, finally Lewis Reid put Ashley in and he scored to make it 3-2 Northwood, again huge celebrations. The first of the 5 minute halves came to the end and we still found ourselves in front. AP did attack but again in the second period of extra time but stout defending by all the team kept the lead intact. Then to cap a fine victory Ashley who had a great first game back after a long layoff through injury fond Dec who sped past the AP defence to make it 4-2 Northwood.

Ashley got the player of the match but all the team did well and showed the character that we know they are capable of well done all.

Dave Blincko