Marsh goal helps United to a second friendly win
United made it two wins from two pre-season games as a Ty Marsh penalty gave them a win at local rivals Oxford City tonight. Second half sub Marsh converted the spot-kick himself after his header had forced the decisive moment in a well-contested game that saw United field 21 players over the 90 minutes.
Having signed earlier in the day Michael Collins played an hour on his debut in a United team consisting of Max Crocombe in goal, Matt Bevans, Michael Raynes, Johnny Mullins and Tom Newey at the back, Collins, Danny Rose, Josh Shama, and Aidan Hawtin in midfield with Alfie Potter just behind Danny Hylton, making his first start for The U’s
The first half was very even as the glorious sunshine lit up Court Place Farm. City drew the first save of the night as Crocombe got down smartly to his left to parry a Rodriguez effort after eight minutes while a Rose free kick on 16 called for safe handling from home keeper Mark Scott. The best chance of the half came to the industrious Hylton who saw a flicked effort well saved by home keeper Mark Scott while Shama’s shot on 45 brought a final save out of Scott right on the whistle.
United stuck with the same eleven until the hour mark when all ten outfield players were switched and it took the new line-up nine minutes to find the breakthrough. Marsh rose well to head a Sam Humphreys corner at goal and it hit a City hand inside the box. The striker took responsibility himself and calmly slotted the ball in the bottom right corner to make it 1-0.
With Marsh joining striker James Roberts from the right of a midfield now containing Josh Ashby, Dave Kitson, Lewis Hayden and Sam Humphreys United had a new impetus, while David Hunt, Sam Long, Freddie Grant and Miles Welch-Hayes quickly settled into a new look back four in front of Crocombe.
Marsh dragged two efforts wide from the right as United looked for a second, with Kitson often the catalyst with some sublime touches in midfield, while Ashby again showed an eye for a pass sitting just in front of the defence.
Skipper Jake Wright sat the game out as a precaution after picking up a knock at Farnborough in the previous match, joining Josh Ruffels, Callum O’Dowda, and Jon Meades in the stands but hoping to be involved at Didcot on Saturday. See you there
United: Crocombe, Bevans, Raynes, Mullins, Newey, Collins, Rose, Potter, Hawtin, Shama, Hylton
From 60:Crocombe, J.Roberts, Hunt, Long, Grant, Welch-Hayes, Humphreys, Ashby, Hayden, Marsh, Kitson, Roberts
Report by Chris Williams, pictures Steve Daniels