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Kick off 10:30 (UK)

13 February 2021 Venue Unavailable Attendance

Kick off 10:30 (UK)

Oxford United U18
2 - 0
Portsmouth U18
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Match Previews

PREVIEW Oxford United U18 v Portsmouth U18

Youth team take on Pompey on Saturday

12 February 2021

Oxford United ‘s under 18s kick off Saturday's match action for the U’s when they welcome Portsmouth to Court Place Farm in the EFL Youth Alliance South West Division.

The youth team enjoyed a spirited 2-1 win over Bristol Rovers on Tuesday afternoon having drawn with Rovers three days before.

They now look to keep that unbeaten run going against Pompey and will be hoping that under 16 striker Gatlin O’Donkor can keep finding the net: a goal on Tuesday made it four goals in four games for the forward with three of them coming from the spot.

O’Donkor, Enrique Tiamuna and George Franklin again step up from the under 16 squad while second year scholars Tyler Goodrham, Kie Plumley, Sam Johnson, Callum Crook and skipper Jack Gardner add that little bit extra experience which has helped the U’s close the gap on leaders AFC Bournemouth.

The game was switched to Court Place Farm’s 3G surface rather than the Training Ground due to this week’s weather and the game kicks off slightly earlier than usual at 10.30am.


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Match Reports

REPORT Oxford United U18 2 Portsmouth U18 0

Young U's beat Pompey to go top

13 February 2021

Oxford United's under 18s went top of their league this morning when goals from Gatlin O'Donkor and Adam Smith gave them a 2-0 win over Portsmouth at Court Place Farm.

With rivals AFC Bournemouth not playing, United took full advantage with a second win of the week thanks to 16-year-old O'Donkor's fifth goal in as many games and Smith's injury-time clincher.

United were on top in the early stages, with winger Will Owens putting in a number of dangerous crosses and Josh Anifowose driving the team forward from midfield.They were deservedly in front on 23 minutes when Anifowose fed O’Donkor and he took advantage of the space available before firing past keeper Conor Manderson to make it 1-0.

130221 youth portsmouth (2).jpg

Portsmouth came back into the game after that, left-back Sam Johnson making a brave block and the defence, with Clint Nosokhare adding a more solid look on his return after injury, doing a good job of protecting keeper Kie Plumley, who didn’t really have a save to make in the first half, although he was thankful that Izzy Kara didn’t make him work after 40 minutes, firing Pompey’s best chance of the half wide.

United might have been two goals up, but Owens headed a great cross from right-back Ben Watt wide in front of the watching first-t,eam squad who had stayed on to watch the youngsters after an early morning training session on the 3G surface.

Most had left a freezing Court Place Farm by the time Plumley made a spectacular save from Harrison Brook early in the second half, the first of several important interventions from the keeper, and with Johnson making another key block United’s lead was looking increasingly at risk as Portsmouth pressed forward.

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The introduction of Tyler Goodrham thankfully sparked a revival, the winger forcing Manderson into a terrific save to push his clever effort over the bar and looking very lively on the left wing.

There was another good save as sub Enrique Tiamuna won the ball and bore down on goal before O'Donkor was denied by the keeper, but Brook should really have levelled on 75 when he read a back header, beat Plumley to the ball but poked his shot wide of the mark. Indeed, Portsmouth had a number of half chances with headers that were flicked wide or not quite timed but they came to nothing and United's back line had worked hard for their clean sheet.

Portsmouth will maybe feel a little aggrieved, but in injury time the game was over as United broke, Callum Crook held the ball then sprang Goodrham and Tiamuna free before Smith arrived at the back post to make it 2-0 and end the contest.

The league table isn't key: developing young players is the goal. Once again this group impressed on both fronts.

Plumley, Watt, Nosokare, Golding, Johnson, Gardner, Coe (Franklin 82), Anifowose (Tiamuna 63), Smith, O’Donkor (Crook 90), Owens (Goodrham 55)

Report by Chris Williams, pictures Steve Edmunds

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