First Merit League defeat for young U's
Saturday 27th February
Football League Youth Alliance, Merit League B
Yeovil Town 1
Oxford United 0
Coach Leon Blackmore-Such told us:
“This was a good learning curve for us despite the result because Yeovil play in a very particular style. It was like the first team playing at Wimbledon on Saturday; very direct and physical and you have to learn how to play against that and try to play your own football. We found it very hard to adapt to it and fair play to Yeovil because they work very hard for each other and make it difficult for the opposition.
“The first half was hard going and we didn’t play the way we usually play at all. Sometimes you have to stretch the game and sometimes you have to know when to keep the ball and use the width. We struggled to get the balance right in the first half, but we did have four or five good bits of play that led to opportunities.
“We reiterated at half time that we had to keep winning first and second balls, and we competed well enough with the physical side of things but we couldn’t break them down and then they scored a scrappy goalmouth goal after about 75 minutes. No complaints; Yeovil had been asking the questions and got a break of the ball.
“So a poor day for us but hopefully a good one to learn from if we play against sides like that again; teams play that way at all levels so it’s important to experience it.
“ We dealt with it well enough defensively but just need to be a bit braver in going about our own business, get on the ball and play when under pressure. It’s about having the character to take the game by the scruff of the neck.”
Stevens, Diaz-Benitez, Hayden, McCormack, C Hawtin, Bryan, Humphries, Baptiste, Hastings (Hartley 55), Noel-Williams, Graham (Ricketts 80)
The youth team are next in action at home to Dagenham and Redbridge this Saturday, 5th March. The game is at Northcourt Road, Abingdon, kick off at 11am.