Sunday, 24 March 2019

Magpies stunned by Hotspurs fight back

Magpies stunned by Hotspurs fight back

AFC HENLEY HURRICANES U12s put in a gritty performance at Jubilee Park last Saturday to run out 2-0 winners against WHITEGROVE KNIGHTS U12s. The result moved the hosts up to fourth place in Division 1 of the East Berks League.

The Hurricanes started brightly as striker Tom Yeoman volleyed just over from 20 yards. Moments later an accurate goal kick from Olly Saunders was picked up by Tom Atkinson in the middle of the pitch and his lobbed pass forward was picked up by Yeoman who calmly rounded the keeper and slotted home to open the scoring.

Midway through the first half Yeoman had to limp off with an injury sustained to his ankle and he could not carry on for the remainder of the half. Olly Colvin moved up front and caused the Whitegrove defence problems but the half closed with the hosts 1-0 ahead.

Tom Bonser put in a good shift at right back and was linking well with Alec Steel who was unlucky not to score with a left foot effort that flashed across the face of goal early in the second half.

Man-of-the-match Olly Saunders had to deal with a number of long range efforts and his ability to deal with corners was pivotal as he cleared his lines on several occasions while defender Henry Steel’s distribution down the left flank was key in moving the Hurricanes up the field.

The game was still in the balance until Sam Robinson wrapped up the scoring and the points for the hosts. Yeoman broke with the ball in the midfield before slipping in an inch perfect pass to Robinson whose pace took him away from the Knights defence and he rounded the keeper before calmly rolling the ball into the back of the net.

Man-of-the-match George Khairallah scored four goals as AFC HENLEY HOTSPURS U12s stunned MADIENHEAD UNITED MAGPIES U12s in a second half comeback that saw the hosts run out 8-5 winners.

The Magpies opened the scoring after 60 seconds with a mazy run from their striker through the Hotspurs midfield and defence, finishing with a clinically taken goal.

Two minutes later the visitors had a second when a goal kick found the same striker whose shot gave the Henley keeper no chance.

Henley thought they had pulled one back when a through ball from Will O’Hagan on the Henley right wing found Khairallah who slotted past the keeper only to be judged offside.

Maidenhead were having the majority of the possession and looked certain to score with their striker one-on-one with Henley keeper Ben Palmer, only for the keeper to pull off a one handed save low to his right.

The visitors were soon to increase the lead with their third goal coming after less than 10 minutes had been played.

This stirred the home side to life and Henley began to put together some good movement with Max Cranstoun winning the ball in midfield with some well timed tackling and fed it out to Tom Francis on the left wing whose shot was forced out for a corner. Henley’s first goal came from a fine piece of team play with Lucas Hendley in defence feeding the ball out to Freddie Formon on the right wing who used a good turn of pass to get past a defender before delivering a well timed cross to Jake Williams in the visitors’ penalty box who volleyed home.

Henley’s celebrations were short lived with Magpies scoring again to lead 4-1 at half-time. In the second half Henley attacked down the right side winning a throw-in which Dexter Harris took quickly finding Khairallah whose shot found the back of the net.

Soon after the second goal followed when a long Freddie Formon throw-in reached Harris whose cross found Khairallah in the visitors penalty box who poked his shot under the diving keeper. The Henley equaliser came from a Palmer clearance which reached Khairallah in the attacking half who took a couple of touches to get past the visitors’ defenders before finding the back of the net to bring up his hat-trick.

Within minutes Henley had taken the lead from a Formon corner which found Harris unmarked in the penalty area bringing the score to 5-4 to the home side.

Henley now had the midfield under control with O’Hagan man-marking the Maidenhead goal scorer and Stanley Massie providing accurate distribution to the Hotspurs wingers and forwards.

The home side extended the lead following a neat one-two between Sam Carter and Tom Francis who then threaded a through ball to Khairallah who slipped past the Maidenhead defence before placing his shot beyond the reach of the keeper for his fourth goal of the game.

With their confidence running high a shot from Khairallah was parried by the Magpies keeper only as far as Williams who followed up to score his second of the game.

Henley’s final goal came from a free-kick 10 yards outside the visitors’ penalty area which saw Massie dip the ball just below the crossbar giving the Maidenhead keeper no chance. With just minutes of the match remaining the Magpies pulled a goal back.

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