U12 Cup match photo


Jim Taylor

Bedfont Eagles hosted Parks Youth, in a semi-final of the Middlesex FA Dudley Harper Under 12 Cup on Sunday, 17th March and your Roving Team was at Bedfont Rec to see it.  

The Middlesex Under 12 Cup was first competed for in season 1971-72, when it was won by Discus FC. The current holders are London Athletic Red, who beat Bessingby Park Rangers Red 3-0, in last season’s final at Rectory Park. 58 teams entered the competition this season.  

Bedfont Eagles had reached this semi-final, with victories over Hanwell Town Red 10-0 (home) in round 1, Celtic Red 7-1 (away) in round 2, Panthera Red 2-0 (home) in round 3 and Ickenham Youth White 8-1 (away) in their quarter final.

Parks Youth had beaten Wealdstone Youth White 5-0 (away), Ase Jnr Tigers 5-0 (at home), Cademy White 1-0 (away) and Whetstone Wanderers Youth Pumas 2-1 (away).

Matches in this competition are 9 a side, with rolling substitutes and are played over 30 minutes each half.

Two very good sides entertained an audience of 53 parents and friends with an exciting and evenly contested match. Bedfont Eagles took an early lead but Parks equalised as half time approached. Eagles scored the winner midway through the second half and retained their lead, during a frenetic last quarter.

Play fluctuated from end to end in the opening stages. The best goal attempts came from Eagles’ Billy Healey, who fired just past the upright and from Parks’ skipper, Eric Wojtkowiak, with a long freekick, which was just wide.

Billy Headley (11) fires just past the upright

Eagles went ahead in the 7th minute, when their captain, Lukas Antanavicius, hit a spectacular cross shot, from outside the box, high into the net.

Lukas Antanavicius shoots...

... and puts Bedfont Eagles ahead

Lukas, who had an outstanding match, burst through the middle but was forced wide by good defensive play by Parks and had to settle for a corner.

Parks’ Emmanuel Okorogu made an incisive run but his dangerous cross was held by keeper, Jayden Dunham.

Jayden then left his penalty area to kick clear from the oncoming Emmanuel.

The visitors equalised in the 23rd minute. Some good approach work set up David Elegbede, whose shot was parried. However, the ball ran loose to Kaylan, who netted.

Jayden Dunham parries David Elegbedes (6) shot...

Kylan (14) nets the rebound

A Bedfont Eagles freekick, from wide on the left, found Kairon Peters, who fired narrowly wide.

Half time score: Bedfont Eagles 1 Parks Youth 1

A timely tackle foiled Asad Yuray, who had worked himself into a good position inside the bye line, near the Eagles’ goal.

Referee Kapadia then found it necessary to have a stern word with Eric Wojtkowiak, regarding some of his tackles.

Eagles’ Alfie Wells was brought down in a wide position. The resultant freekick by Kairon Peters eluded his teammates in the goalmouth. 

Lukas Antanavicius hit what proved to be the Eagles’ winning goal, 14 minutes into the second half. His shot, into the top of the net from a freekick 35 yards out, was even more spectacular than his initial scoring strike.

Lukas hits a free kick...

... to score Eagles' winner

The excitement increased as Parks Youth sought an equaliser, while the Eagles also continued to create scoring chances.

Kairon Peters’ progress through the middle of the Parks’ defence was halted by Taylan Cil’s well-timed tackle.

Parks’ Dylan Terry shot over from a good position.

A well-placed Kairon Peters was wide with a shot across the goalmouth.

Kairon Peters (9) shoots wide

Parks’ custodian, Kajetan Szutkiewicz, was happy to concede a corner, by saving with his feet from Jackson Hanover.

Jayden Dunham parried Dylan Terry’s long-range effort.

In a goalmouth melee, Eric Wojtkowiak hit the Eagles’ post and another shot was charged down.

At the other end, Lukas Antanavicius worked his way through the Parks’ defence but Kejatan saved with his feet.

A good Parks’ Youth move released Theo Tucker, who went down in the Eagles penalty area and was cautioned for simulation.

Theo Tucker goes down...

... and is cautioned for diving

The Parks’ keeper left his area to clear but missed the ball with a wild kick. However, he was able to win the race back for the ball and grab it.

The Parks’ pressure produced several corners, during the 5 minutes of added time, but the Eagles’ defence resisted successfully.

The Eagles' defence deals with a Parks corner

Final score: Bedfont Eagles 2 Parks Youth 1

Referee Kaizad Kapadia had a very impressive match.  He was calm and assured throughout and was obviously enjoying himself. Kaizad was ably supported by his assistant referee, Archie Hurst. Unfortunately, the other appointed assistant referee failed to appear but some parents willingly deputised for him.


Bedfont Eagles: Jayden Dunham, Jackson Taylor, Lukas Antanavicius (capt), Jack Gilbert, Tai Andrews, Billy Healey, Zach Ellis, Francis Helyer and Jackson Hanover.

Rolling substitutes: Ziad Abdelnaby, Archie Chipping, Kairon Peters, Alfie Wells and Joshua Horwood.

Parks Youth: Kajetan Szutkiewicz, Taylan Cil, Marley Beckford, David Elegbede, Asad Turay, Theo Tucker, Eric Wojtkowiak (capt), Kaylan and Hector Howard. 

Rolling substitutes: Dylan Terry, Jahziah Brown-Hall, Mason Bernard-Emmanuel and Emmanuel Okorogu.

Bedfont Eagles will play the winners of the semi-final between Hampton & Richmond Borough Youth S and St Joseph’s Youth 88 Red.

Report: Jim Taylor

Photography: Chris Benn