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Thursday 26th August, the start of our U18’s first ever Isthmian Youth League campaign. The young rams had a short trip to Marlow FC to kick things off as excitement builds around the fresh, young squad.
The rams came out the blocks quickly from the first whistle, a darting run from Gibson earned the U18’s a corner within the first 2 minutes. The resulting corner, well taken by Bennett was nodded home by Johnson on the six yard box! Rams 1-0 up. A fine spell of pressure from the hosts who were finding their feet in the game lead to a number of dangerous crosses into the rams box, one of which was slotted home at the back post, the hosts level at 1-1 on the 22nd minute. Shortly after, Marlow were awarded a free kick just outside penalty area from a tackle in which Gibson came away with the ball. None the less, a well struck free kick parried by Clarke was tapped in from close range on the 24th minute. 2-1 the young rams trail. The rams showed great desire to get themselves back in their game and a spell of pressure resulted in a free kick , 25 yards from goal. Up steps Gibson, curls the ball into the top left corner, leaving the goalkeeper routed to the spot. Rams level, 2-2 on the 43rd minute, a vital goal.
The second half saw the rams step it up, largely dominating the second half, playing some attractive football and creating numerous chances. With the hosts Marlow beginning to tire, their efforts throughout was not to forget. Deep into the second half the 78th minute, some good defending by Kandanda, managing to turn, pick out Lucey down the left hand side. Lucey drove up the pitch slotting in Gibson who sat one defender down and slotted past the Marlow goalkeeper. 3-2 to the young rams! The hosts responded well and had a few efforts at the goal, all of which saved by Clarke.
The rams held on and took a 3-2 victory away from the Alfred Davis Memorial Ground, gaining the clubs first ever Isthmian Youth League points.
Clarke, Reynolds-Sinclair, Thurston (C), Conway, Kandanda, Bennett (Mckenzie 45’), Barber (Connor 53’), Keary 🟨 , Gibson (Whitburn 67’), Lucey, Johnson
Subs - Connor (Barber 53’), Mapfumo, McKenzie (Bennett 45’), Aviss, Whitburn (Gibson 67’).