Our Under 18 players produced a splendid performance at Uxbridge FC on Sunday, in their South East Counties Youth Championship match against their London counterparts.
After a fairly even start, we took control of the game and put the visiting defence under increasing pressure. We didn’t open the scoring until the 41st minute of the game but it had been obvious for some time that this goal was coming. We scored our second goal almost immediately after the interval and added six more in a superb all-round performance. Our defence was solid throughout, with the dominating central pairing of Zayn Daniels and Jack Roper particularly impressive. Skipper Malachy McGovern and his midfield colleagues effectively controlled proceedings and Alex Hadjithemistou was outstanding in the number 10 role. Alex ran tirelessly throughout and played a part in most of our goals. His distribution, particularly his cross-field passing, was superb.
Our first scoring attempt was a low drive from Malachy which passed just wide. Harvey Killeen was immediately prominent, with his neat approach work. A free kick by Alex was headed down by Malachy but was stopped by a defender on the goal line.
London striker, Dean Humphrey brought a good save from Filip Chalupniczak, who was hurt in the process. Then we continued to exert pressure without scoring. Ricardo Price headed Felix Amoah’s cross home but was adjudged to have fouled the keeper in the process. Keeper Aaron Cathrew then saved at close range from Malachy, who had been released by Harvey.
However, Malachy eventually put us ahead with a spectacular goal. He controlled the ball, flicked it up and hit it on the volley into the top of the net.
Half time score: Middlesex 1 London 0
Malachy doubled our lead in the 47th minute, with a glancing header from Harvey’s well-placed corner kick.
Another corner by Harvey produced our third goal, 8 minutes later. Zayn won the ball in the goal mouth and played it to Alex, who turned and hit it home from close range.
Things continued to get worse for our visitors. In the 57th minute, Samarai Evans received a second yellow card following a bad tackle on Harvey Killeen. This was only a few minutes after his first yellow card, which came after a previous stern talking to from the referee. Harvey was injured by the tackle and had to withdraw from the match. Ricardo Price hit the resulting free kick well but it was deflected high over the crossbar.
London keeper, Aaron Cathrew, who had injured his knee trying to prevent our third goal, had to leave the action after 67 minutes. He was replaced by reserve keeper, Tommy Kemp.
Zayn put us 4 goals ahead in the 70th minute, heading home Alex’s long free kick. Another long free kick from Alex was met by Michael O’Neill whose header was off target. However, 8 minutes later Alex’s centre provided our 5th goal, which was headed in by Ricardo Price.
Two minutes later, Alex took possession of a through ball by Ricardo Greenaway and chipped it over the keeper for our 6th goal.
Visiting striker, David Bremang was tripped in our penalty area in the 86th minute. He took the kick himself but blazed it high over the crossbar.
Felix Amoah squared for Alex to hammer our 7th goal into the net in the 88th minute. Tommy Kemp touched the ball on its way in but couldn’t stop it.
Malachy completed the scoring in added time, following good approach work from Ricardo.
Referee Chris Fernandes should be commended on the efficient and sensible manner in which he controlled the match. He was well supported by his Assistants, Steve Williams and Charley McInerney.
Final Score: Middlesex 8 London 0
Filip Chalupniczak (Victoria College), Simeon Olarein (Hayes & Yeading United), Miles Dumba (St Lawrence), Harvey Killeen, Zayn Daniels, Jack Roper (all Hayes & Yeading United), Emre Topp (Rapid-Aid), Malachy McGovern (Hendon) (capt), Ricardo Price (Wingate & Finchley) Alex Hadjithemistou (Cheshunt) and Felix Amoah (Wembley).
Substitutes (rolling subs were used): Michael O’Neill (Hayes & Yeading United), Ricardo Greenaway and Will Murphy (both Hendon), Harvey Hayes (Bedfont Sports) (reserve goalkeeper).
Manager: John Fletcher Assistant Manager: Darrel Gyngell Coaches: Vince Purdue and Remi Bignall. Physio: Gary Strudwick.
Aaron Cathrew (Greenwich Borough), D’maire Smith (Dynamic), Mohamed Deen (Cray Valley), Ricardo Sewell (Caribb), Samarai Evans (Conquest), Turkay Korkmaz (unassigned) (capt), David Bremang (Conquest), Alfie Naylor (Crayford Arrows), Dean Humphrey (Barnet Community), Andell Gibbons (Conquest) and Cliffon Richards (Boreham Wood).
Substitutes: Luke Markey (Weston), Declan Frith, Alamein Adanmole, Harry Kemp and Tommy Kemp (reserve goalkeeper).
Manager: Kojo Korang Assistant Manager: Carl White Physio: Chevon White.
Referee: Chris Fernandes Assistant Referees: Steve Williams and Charley McInerney.
Our thanks are again given to Uxbridge FC for allowing us the use of their excellent facilities and for looking after us so well. We appreciate their continuing support.
Photos from the match are available here, courtesy of Chris Benn.