Oxford United U18s continued their impressive run of form today with a deserved 4-1 win away at Swindon Town in the EFL Youth Alliance.
Playing at Stanley Park, Chippenham due to ongoing Covid restrictions across the region, the young Yellows who started with eight first year scholars in their line up came flying out of the blocks and took the lead on 4 minutes when some clever interplay down the right resulted in a deep cross which winger Will Owens headed home from close range.
With tackles flying in, and the intensity of the yellows matching the occasion, combative midfielder Mac Masters was first to pick up a yellow card for a strong challenge on 22 minutes in the middle of the pitch.
A nasty looking ankle injury to Josh Anifowose saw him replaced by fellow first year Elijah Coe midway through the half but Leon Blackmore-Such and Chris Hackett’s Young side continued to have the better of the play.
Half time saw left-back Sam Johnson make his return from injury and the cultured second year slotted into central midfield alongside captain Jack Gardner.
Shortly after the break Owens doubled the Yellows' lead with another powerful header this time from a second phase set play that saw Coe cross deep to the back post.
Swindon, who were struggling to cope with Oxford’s energy and intensity, pulled one back on 60 minutes against the run of play but the Yellows put the game to bed in the last 15minutes with two goals from U16s striker Gatlin O’Donkor who came of the bench to see the game out.
A late cameo from U16 midfielder Enrique Tiamuna and a red card on 90mins for Owens completed the action - another impressive performance from the young squad whose attention now turns to Tuesday where they take on Yeovil at home in a fixture rearranged from earlier in the season.
Line Up: Brearey, Watt (Tiamuna), Nosakhare, Golding, Grant, Anifowose (Coe), Masters (Johnson), Gardner (c), Smith, Owens, Crook (O’Donkor). Unused sub Niemczycki.