Aylsham U13s In Hard Fought Away Win
Match Report 09.12.18
Aylsham FC U13 v Stoke United U13, Framingham Earl High School
Aylsham FC U13 travelled to face Stoke United U13 at Framingham Earl High School this morning (Sunday 9th December) in their latest Norfolk Combined Youth Football League U13 Premiership fixture.
In cold but bright conditions Aylsham kicked off and there was nothing between the teams early on. Stoke took the lead on 3 minutes after the home striker was first to a clearance and lifted the ball over Bailey into the corner of the net. Two minutes later, a long ball over the top threatened Aylsham again but the final shot was easily gathered by Bailey. In the 7th minute Bailey was called into action again, this time pulling off a fine diving save following a shot from inside the area.
After finding themselves on the back foot for a few minutes, Aylsham got more of a foothold and, after Freddy cleared a corner, Mitchy accelerated down the left flank. Mitchy’s cross-field pass fell to Freddy and, while he found his way blocked, the ball was only cleared as far as Josh who took a shot from distance but saw his effort drop just over the bar. A minute later Aylsham went close again with Alfie shooting from the edge of the area but his low attempt was tipped round the post at full stretch by the Stoke goalkeeper. After the initial corner was cleared, Mitchy kept the ball alive swinging in a cross that was worked to Alfie by Jude but the final shot was well saved again. Soon after Ronnie tried his luck from distance but the Stoke stopper was equal to it.
In the 14th minute Aylsham’s pressure and perseverance finally unlocked Stoke with the equaliser coming from a neat move. Ollie was first to a clearance and lifted the ball forward to Freddy who sent his pass in behind the Stoke defence where Mitchy was first to it, striking a left footed effort across the keeper and into the net to make it 1-1. Two minutes later Aylsham thought they had taken the lead after Alfie’s deflected effort from the edge of the area looped over the keeper but the linesman’s flag had been raised for offside so the score remained level.
The majority of the action was taking place in the Stoke half at this stage and Jude created a shooting opportunity from distance but the home goalkeeper kept it out. Aylsham has to be on their guard after a cross from the right wasn’t cleared and Bailey pulled off a brilliant diving save to push the ball away with Adam first to react to clear the rebound. In the 28th minute Brad came on in place of Ronnie and on their next attack Aylsham went close again. Mitchy’s throw was well controlled by Alfie and he beat his man before laying the ball to Freddy who drilled a first-time effort that the keeper tipped onto the post. Alfie was first to the rebound, striking it goalwards bringing another good save before the Stoke stopper snothered the ball as Brad looked to poke it home from close range. As the half drew to a close, after a good start by the hosts it was the visitors who were looking the most dangerous as the half-time whistle blew.
Stoke kicked off the second half with Jack coming on for Josh. Within a minute of the restart Aylsham took the lead. Jack put pressure on a Stoke midfielder forcing a hurried clearance that Jude headed forward. Alfie showed great strength to win the ball and hold it up well before turning his man to thread a pass behind the home defence to set Brad through the middle and he made no mistake with a neat right-footed finish. Three minutes later the visitors furthered their advantage after Jack and Brad worked together to win the ball back in the visitor’s half. Brad broke forward before switching the ball across to Mitchy who executed a perfect chip over the defence where Alfie took a touch before finishing into the top corner with his right foot to make it 3-1 to Aylsham.
In the 42nd minute Stoke has a sight of goal but a shot flew narrowly wide of Bailey’s goal from the edge of the Aylsham area. The visitors went straight up the other end where Mitchy lifted a ball into the path of Jack who burst forward and was unlucky to see his shot deflected just wide to win his side a corner. From Alfie’s centre, Brad volleyed goalwards but saw his effort hacked away off the line as Aylsham continued to threaten. Bailey was called into action moments later as it was end-to-end stuff, handling well to gather a powerful shot from the right side of the area. The visitors created another opportunity with Mitchy playing a lovely through-ball into Brad’s path but he screwed his shot just past the post.
In the 52nd minute Aylsham made further substitutions with Tyler entering the fray replacing Denver in the back four and Josh returning for Jude in the centre of midfield. In the 60th minute the visitors went close again after Jack found Alfie in space who flicked it into Brad’s path and while he connected well, the Stoke keeper saved low down. Moments later Jack and Alfie combined well again after Brad charged down a clearance with Alfie dropping his shoulder to beat his marker but saw his powerful shot from the edge of the area saved confidently by the busy home goalkeeper.
In the 61st minute Ronnie came on with Alfie taking a breather. Soon after, a swift break down the left saw Stoke look to fashion an opportunity but Ollie tracked his man well and used his strength to win the ball before clearing his lines. Aylsham broke out quickly after Tyler bravely cleared to Ronnie, playing a neat one-two with Jack before spreading it wide to Josh who brought another smart save from the home stopper. As the game entered the last five minutes Stoke reduced the arrears with a crisp low finish from a neat through-ball. Aylsham didn’t panic and tried to keep possession in their opponent’s half with Ronnie winning the ball on the edge of the host’s box and finding Josh, who beat four players on his way into the area, before bringing a diving save from the goalkeeper. With two minutes to go Brad lifted a great ball forward to give Ronnie a chance to cross and his deep centre was met first-time by Mitchy but his effort flew just over the bar. Aylsham finished the game on the front foot with Freddy putting in an inswinging corner that Jack headed narrowly wide, this being the last of the action with the whistle blowing to signal the end of a hard fought away win for Aylsham. The reigning champions remaining clear at the top of the Norfolk Combined Youth Football League U13 Premiership.