Senior Youth Cup match photo


Jim Taylor

The quarter finals of this season’s Middlesex Senior Youth Cup were completed on Tuesday last, 13th February, when Southall U18 team played their home match against Harrow Borough U18, at the latter’s Rogers Family Stadium. 

Both teams compete in the Southern Counties Floodlit Youth League Pegasus Division, which Southall currently top, with a 100% record and a goal difference of +48.

The Middlesex Senior Youth Cup was established in 2000, to provide the youth teams of senior clubs with a midweek competition under floodlights. It is named after former Middlesex Youth FA President, Jeff Ritson, who donated the trophy. Cockfosters are the current holders, having beaten Uxbridge 3-0 in last season’s final at Bedfont Sports FC.

Southall had qualified for the quarter final with a convincing 7-2 away victory against Harefield United. Harrow Borough received a bye in round 1.

An entertaining game, between two sides playing attractive passing football, was eventually won by Harrow Borough. Southall dominated the early play and went ahead in the 10th minute. Harrow Borough gradually got into the match and equalised just before the interval. They took the lead 5 minutes into second half and increased it with 15 minutes remaining. Southall soon reduced the deficit but Harrow Borough kept control in the closing stages, to win 3-2.

The match was very well controlled by referee Richard Coker, efficiently supported by his assistant referees.

Southall attacked from the start and Harrow keeper, Cian McGrath-Brown, saved low down from Shyon Dennis. Ethan Karim went up-field for a corner but he shot wide. Shyon made a run on the right but his low cross was cleared.

However, Southall took the lead in the 10th minute. Noah Softleigh-Moore set up Ellis Martin-Cherry, who slotted the ball into the far corner of the net. 

Ellis Martin-Cherry (9) shoots...

... to put Southall ahead

Then the Harrow keeper saved two low shots from Noah.

Harrow Borough came into the game and the play moved rapidly from end to end. Cole Williams made a run through the middle but was dispossessed by David Shenas’ timely tackle. Luke Finnegan shot across the goal-face and just beyond the far post.

Shyon Dennis released Ellis Martin-Cherry but his cross was cleared. Shyon then hit a free kick over the crossbar, from a central position 30 yards out.

Shyon Dennis' (10) free-kick clears the crossbar

Borough’s Salomon Roebuck shot past the post from around 30 yards. A good move, involving Salomon, Cole Williams and Nasir Sharifi, produced a corner. Jamal Sharpe made a penetrative run, riding a dubious tackle and forced another corner.

Jamal Sharpe’s freekick from the edge of the box was taken confidently by the Southall keeper.

Harrow Borough equalised in the 43rd minute in a goalmouth scramble. Luke Finnegan’s shot was charged down but Jamal Sharpe netted.

Luke Finnegan's (9) shot is charged down

... and Jamal Sharpe (11) levels the scores

Jamal burst through the middle and set up Luke, who fired wide.

Borough keeper, Cian McGrath-Brown, made a fine close range save from Cruz Lee-Ojo.

The Harrow Borough 'keeper saves from Cruz Lee-Ojo

Half time score: Southall U18 1 Harrow Borough U18 1

Harrow Borough exerted some early pressure and a good four player move ended with Luke Finnegan hitting the post. They then forced successive corners and took the lead from the second one in the 50th minute, when Nasir Sharifi shot through the crowded penalty area into the corner of the net.

Nasir Sharifi shoots...

... to make the score 2-1 to Harrow Borough

Salomon Roebuck fought off a challenge and fed Jamal Sharpe, who cut in and shot into the side netting.

Shyon Dennis was brought down just outside the Borough penalty area. Cruz hit the freekick past the wall but the keeper saved with his feet.

Harrow Borough increased their lead in the 76th minute. A freekick was charged down and the ball rebounded to Rory Williams, who shot home from 25 yards.

Rory Williams (out of picture) nets Harrow Borough's third goal

Southall reduced Borough’s advantage to a single goal again, only 3 minutes later, through Ellis Martin-Cherry’s low drive.

Ellis Martin-Cherry shoots...

... to score Southall's second goal

Ellis then had a good chance to equalise. Jack Brysland squared the ball to him in front of the goal but he shot high over the crossbar.

Harrow Borough took the game to Southall in the closing stages. Brian McGovern broke away upfield but his shot was charged down. Cole Williams charged down Southall keeper, Joshua Lohmeier’s clearance but a defender saved the situation. Cole then shot against the Southall post.

Luke Finnegan squared for Kasparas Sacevicius, whose shot was blocked at the expense of a corner.

The final chance of the match, during the 6 minutes added time fell to Kasparas, who shot over the crossbar.

Result: Southall U18 2 Harrow Borough U18 3


Southall: Joshua Lohmeier, David Shenas, Cruz Lee-Ojo, Iago Popov (capt),   Ethan Karim, Charlie Davies, Jack Brysland, Dylan Payne (Aseel Albrek 82 mins), Ellis Martin-Cherry, Shyon Dennis and Noah Softleigh-Moore.

Unused substitutes: Kai-Reece Nicholas and Rowan Daly.

Manager: Aaron Samuel.

Harrow Borough: Cian McGrath-Brown, Nasir Sharifi, Geri Katana, Yannick Bamba (capt), Ameer Ali, Rory Williams, Salomon Roebuck (Kasparas Sacevicius 66), Brian McGovern, Luke Finnegan (Vladimir Drozd 60), Cole Williams and Jamal Sharpe (Noah Bryan 90).

Unused substitutes: Julius Hounsell and Ezekiel Romain.

Manager: Daniel Dyer   Assistant Manager: Andre Scarlett.

Referee: Richard Coker   Assistant Referees: Jatinder Sira and Cesar Bisoko Sibita.

The results of the other quarter final matches in the competition were:

Cockfosters (Youth) 4 Hayes & Yeading United 0
Northwood 5 Uxbridge 4
Bedfont Sports 1 Hampton & Richmond Borough 0

Harrow Borough will visit the holders, Cockfosters, in the semi-final.   Northwood are at home to Bedfont Sports.

Report: Jim Taylor

Photography: Chris Benn