Noel-Williams acores four in derby clash
Oxford United 5 Swindon Town 2
Saturday 12th November
Leon Blackmore-Such talks us through an excellent win for the under-18s against United’s local rivals:
After losing at Plymouth it was good timing to have a derby game to get the boys up for it and buzzing. They knew about the rivalry and there was a certain edge about them, which was pleasing. We were 2-0 up inside 15 minutes. Some brilliant work from Malachi Napa set up the first: his shot was deflected to Dejon Noel-Williams who tapped in the first. Dejon’s second came from a cross from Joe Hartley and Dejon headed across his man to make it 2-0.
It wasn’t just the goals; we were pressing and on the front foot and the work ethic was much more pleasing to watch from a coaching and development point of view. They knew the last game hadn’t been good enough and it was great to see their response.
Going 2-0 up so early can have an effect and it did a little bit where we dropped off at times, but from pressing quite high we won the ball back, Dejon had a shot, Albie Hopkins followed up and had another go and Shandon Baptiste (pictured) did really well to pick up the ball again and make it 3-0 at half time.
We said that we didn’t want them to ease off because of the scoreline and wanted to try and control the second half. They found it hard to get on the front foot again. Swindon had nothing to lose and scored from a set piece for 3-1. But credit to the lads because five minutes later Charlie Hawtin put a great ball over the top for Dejon who lobbed the keeper for his hat-trick to make it 4-1.
We have a lot of discussion about management of the game, especially at 4-1 and moments like that. You are tempted to try and change things and stop doing what got you into that situation in the first place. We had a throw in right by our corner flag and took it quickly when nobody was really set. They nicked it and from there it led to a penalty and an avoidable goal. In a weird way it was good because it highlights what we have been saying and we had a chat about it after the game to remind them about game management.
It didn’t affect the outcome too much and in the 90th minute Dejon did great to get past two defenders and score again to make it 5-2 and get himself four goals in the game.
They deserved the win and worked hard for it.
United: Clayton, Carr, McDonnell, Hawtin, Bryan, Hartley, Baptiste (Crooks (Mannings)), McCreadie, Hopkins (Baker), Napa, Noel-Williams