Thursday, 5 October 2017

Greenwich Borough U18 0 Margate U18 4

Match 38/17/1488 - Wednesday, 4th October 2017 - FA Youth Cup 2QR

Greenwich Borough (0) 0
Margate (0) 4 Bray 19, Ikeije 40, 90+4, Richards 89
Attendance: 81

Entrance: £5
Team Sheet: Free
Mileage: 60/2,646

Match Report

A year ago, to the day, the FA Youth Cup Second Qualifying Round featured Tonbridge Angels progressing with a memorable performance that disposed of Dover Athletic. If that was a evening to remember, then the next round’s encounter with Maidstone United, a 5-5 draw after extra-time with the Stones winning the penalty shoot-out, was probably the best match I saw all season at any level.

Sadly, one year on, I’m drawn to Cray Valley to renew acquaintances with the parents of that Tonbridge side that I wholeheartedly embraced and enjoyed for a season, but playing now in the blue of Margate Football Club.

The rhymes and reasons for the mass defection are well known to Tonbridge supporters and is not something that I wish to recycle, but with 10 of the Margate’s starting eleven having been part of that Tonbridge squad, the Angels loss is most certainly Margate’s gain.

On the night, Margate progressed in the end quite comfortably, but it was the ongoing development of some of those players that was most pleasing. Jack Bray was imposing; Henry Ikeije was exciting; Jardell Conteh was impressive and Lewis Mitchell, between the sticks, did everything that was asked of him.

Greenwich Borough put up a decent fight of their own. Their number seven was a livewire and their big number 10 a handful.

An opening 20 minutes, that was evenly contested, ended with a powerful Bray header from a Jack Fenton cross giving the east Kent side the lead.

Ziyad Ghali saw a shot blocked and then another effort cleared from the line before the visitors doubled their advantage five minutes before the break. A short free kick played by Conteh caught out the Greenwich defence as it found Ikeije whose angled shot from 10 yards was only helped into the goal by the goalkeeper.

Margate had enough possession to put the tie to bed long before substitute Josh Richards, who had an explosive turn of pace, intercepted a clearance to run on and touch the ball past the advancing keeper with a minute remaining.

On a evening that had turned distinctly chilly, I decided I could pass on the couple of minutes of added time, so I missed Ikeije’s gloss-adding fourth goal.

It was a good to see familiar faces and pleasing to see the lads progression, even if it made me feel just a little sad.

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