Kent Youth League – U14s Central Division
Cray Wanderers U14s 1
Bromley U14s 0
Cray Wanderers U14s remain top of the Kent Youth League Central Division after victory against Bromley on a cold and windy at Foots Cray Rugby Club in a game that was a tremendous advert for Youth team football.
Although not a game of many chances with the weather making it difficult the endeavour from both sides was admirable and the match was very well refereed and barely a bad tackle in the game.
The Wands who were knocked out of the Kent County Cup by Bromley in a high scoring game in October took the lead as early as the eighth minute when Louie Johnson’s speculative shot sailed into the net and before the break Ellis Newbold’s free kick came back off the crossbar. Both goalkeepers made fine saves in the second half to keep the score at 1-0 and Cray perhaps just on chances merited the victory.
Not surprisingly it took a few minutes for the game to settle down in the blustury conditions and with the first incisive passing move good set up down the right by Victor Daniels and George Clifford and the ball across found Louie Johnson who from 20 yards saw his shot which looked like it might loop over the bar suddenly drifted towards the top corner of the net and Cray were ahead.
Bromley had a little spell with perhaps the conditions more in their favour and following a throw in down the left the ball came to the no 10 who shot wide from 25 yards. Then from a short corner down the left the ball came to the no 4 who fired a shot narrowly wide of the right post.
Cray went back on the attack and Louie Johnson did well to set up Callum Ellington who broke to the edge of the area and fired just over the top.
Bromley almost levelled when a Hugo Webb clearance was hit back first time by the no 11 and the ball went just past the left post and behind.
Before half time Cray almost grabbed a second when Ronnie Roberts run forward ended with a free kick eighteen yards from goal out on the right and from the free kick Ellis Newbold saw his shot come back off the crossbar.
Half Time: 1-0
The warmth of the changing room (and the clubhouse) came as a brief respite from the cold but the second half was an entertaining affair with Bromley starting well but Cray imposing themselves before the end.
For Bromley down the left the no 7 found the no 4 whose shot was held by Hugo Webb in the Cray goal. Then Webb excelled with a superb save after the no 14 set up the no 11 for a close range shot which Webb pushed out one handed and the ball was put behind for a corner.
For Cray, Roberts did well to set up Daniels whose shot was blocked by a defender. Then Daniels cushioned a pass to Ellington who shot narrowly wide of the left post.
Then Ellington picked the ball up, ran forward and drove in a shot from 20 yards heading for the bottom right which the keeper did well to push the ball behind.
The commitment and quality continued through the half but both defences were playing well and chances were limited, for Cray Daniels shot wide from Clifford’s pass.
As the game entered the final moments Cray were awarded a free kick down the right of the penalty area and Alfie Boyle’s curling kick looked to be crashing into the top corner but to the keeper’s credit he pulled off a fine save to push the ball over the bar.
Cray were able to hang on to the lead and played extremely well against something of a bogey side and Rhys Barker’s fine young team kept up what has been a excellent run of form and have a two point lead at the top from Thamesmead Town and eight from Glebe but both teams have five games in hand on Cray.
Cray Wanderers: Hugo Webb, George Neve, Gary Johnson, Lucas Ruffin, Jack Church (Capt.), Noah Cooper, Alfie Boyle, Victor Daniels, Louie Johnson, Callum Ellington, Ellis Newbold; George Clifford, Ronnie Roberts, Ben Turner, Renalde Brown
It was another excellent day of results for our Youth teams on Sunday with the U9s starting off early with a 5-0 win at Dartford. Here is another great report from one of the parents of the U9s Sharks players:
Another away trip for the U9s Sharks at Dartford FC. The boys started a bit slowly with Dartford creating some early pressure. This pressure forced goalie Sam Foreman into a good save with his feet, but the danger wasn’t over from this attack and the Sharks had Joe Costello to thank for a great clearance off the line.
The Sharks then began to find their passing game which brought about their first goal by way of a great long range shot from Costello, 1-0.
The Sharks began to dominate and a run and cross from Archy Newland was met with a clever flick Archie Russell, 2-0 at half time.
The Sharks began the second half as they finished the first with two great headed goals from Russell completing an excellent hat-trick. The scoring was completed with a fifth goal by way of an own goal.
As the game drew to a close Nicholas was unfortunate not to score with a great strike against the crossbar.
Another great performance from the Sharks winning 5-0 and playing some great football.
Meanwhile in the Kent Youth League, the U16s continued their excellent league form with a hard fought 3-2 victory at home to Greenwich Borough. That win puts Cray up to 2nd in the North Division table two points behind leaders Glebe. Next Sunday, the Wands have a big game in the Semi-Final of the Kent League Cup at Sevenoaks Town, 12.30pm kick off.
The Cray Wanderers U13s top of the KYL Central Division were not in action this weekend.
Into the Selkent League and the Cray Wanderers U13s Lions carried their excellent league form into the Selkent Cup and advanced to the Quarter Finals with a 4-1 home win against Hayden Youth Black. The Wands will play Hillfielders Hawks at home in the last 8 on 17th February.
The U13s Sharks will be in cup competition next Sunday as they travel to Dulwich Village Black. The winners of that tie will be away to Athenlay or Junior Reds Athletic.
The U12s Piranhas have been in red hot form since losing their season opener and unbeaten in ten league games after a 4-2 home win against 3rd placed Petts Wood Merlins. Cray are in second place, a point behind leaders Dartford who Cray have drawn with twice.
The U14s were beaten 3-12 at second placed Orpington in the Selkent U14B Yellow Division.
The U10s had a very good victory, 2-0 at home to Foots Cray Lions while the U10s Lions had a decent result in a 1-1 draw against Phoenix Sports.
The last few weeks since the resumption of the season after Christmas has seen some excellent results and performances and the future is bright but a big well done to all our Youth teams whatever the results and to our dedicated coaches who bring these teams together and to all the players.