United's youth team lose out in high-scoring thrilller
Oxford United's youth team went down 3-4 at home to Swindon's under-18s on Saturday morning in an eventful Football League Youth Alliance South West fixture.
A topsy-turvy game saw Oxford surrender two goals before Shandon Baptiste pulled one back just before half-time. In the second half Oxford equalised through Charlie Hawtin and then took the lead thanks to Seth Humphries, but with the U's unable to capitalise on their dominance, Swindon hit back with two goals to take the points.
Coach Andy Whing said:
"We had a half-decent start but conceded from a silly free-kick when they lost their markers and bundled it in at the back post. We conceded the second from a short back-pass that Jack Stevens was just unable to get to ahead of their striker, who made it 2-0.
"We slowly got back into the game without creating a lot but then, just before half-time, Shandon Baptiste cut in from the right and scored with a shot from 20 yards that flew into the bottom-left corner.
"We regrouped at half-time and instructed the lads to press higher up the pitch and they responded really well and we soon equalised when Charlie Hawtin attacked the ball and powered home a header from a corner. We had the momentum and were the best I've seen us this season going forward. Two minutes later Seth Humphries got into the area, rode a couple of challenges and slotted home to give us the lead.
"We were in the ascendancy but for some reason we just took our foot off the pedal and invited Swindon to pressure us. We played some silly passes across the midfield and we got caught and let them in to equalise. A couple of minutes later we didn't track their runner down our left and he nipped in and scored the winner.
"It's very disappointing that after being on top we slowed the game down and played balls into dangerous areas. It's just a lack of concentration but even at 4-3 down we created several clear-cut chances but we just couldn't score. It was just one of those days but it's very frustrating to concede four goals, especially at home and it seems that we always concede one or two goals before we start playing."
United: Stevens, Ricketts (Diaz-Benitez), Carroll, McCormack, Hawtin, Baptiste, Hayden, Humphries, Graham, Napa (Hastings), Jeacock
United's youth team are next in action in the FA Youth Cup first round proper when they take on Kidlington at Abingdon United on Tuesday 3rd November, kick off 7.45pm. Admission is £5 (£2 for under 16s and over 65s). Turnstiles open at 7pm so come along and watch the boys and experience the warm welcome that is always on offer in the social club at Northcourt Road.