Oxford United’s Under 19 side picked up their first point of the season with a 1-1 draw away at Plymouth Argyle on Friday afternoon.
This season sees United fielding under 19s and under 17s in competitive fixtures with the older age group consisting mainly of second year scholars, and they secured a draw against Argyle thanks to a goal from striker Adam Smith
“We did well” Coach Darren Purse told us. “It’s a long journey for the first game, it’s a new team but we played some good football and got ourselves ahead but then we went down to ten men when Tyler Goodrham was sent off and we came under pressure for the last fifteen minutes.
"It was good to show a little bit of character but we couldn’t quite hang on to the lead and so we came away with one point instead of three which was a bit frustrating. Not a bad start though and things we can work on, for sure.”
United: Brearey, Watt, Nosakhare, Golding, Sankoh, Johnson, Anifowose, Coe, Goodrham, Smith, Owens
Subs used: Masters, Tiamuna, Franklin
The following day an Under 17 side drew 1-1 away at Aston Villa in a friendly. Dan Harris told us:
“Previously there were first years who maybe weren’t getting much game time in the Youth Alliance: they tended to play more in the second year. But the new format means we can get as many players as possible 90 minutes and in this case it allowed centre-back Owen Giles to play his first 90 of the season, Erian Zabeli to captain the side and Amari Davis-Stephenson to build on a promiising pre-season with our goal from the penalty spot.”
The youth team are in league action again on Friday with a trip to Sutton United but before that there is a big game for the Under 21 when they welcome Huddersfield Town to Thame’s ASM Stadium on Wednesday.
The winners go through to the group stages of the Premier League Cup and will get to test themselves against some of the best young players in the country.
It should be a great night of cup football: admission is just£3 adults and FREE to under 16s so come along and see the stars of the future in action.