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U's Through To Semi Final Of Youth Alliance Cup

U18s win on penalties against Wimbledon

29 November 2022

Club News

U's Through To Semi Final Of Youth Alliance Cup

U18s win on penalties against Wimbledon

29 November 2022

Oxford United U18s are through to the semi-final of the Youth Alliance Cup after beating Wimbledon on penalties this afternoon.

United conceded within ten minutes before George Franklin levelled from the spot. Keeper Fraser Barnsley was then the hero in the shootout, saving three penalties.

It was a tight first half, with neither side having many clear cut chances. United started well and Josh Iheanacho almost pressed the Dons keeper into an early mistake as his clearance ricocheted off the Oxford striker.

It was Wimbledon however who found an early lead. Lacey did well to block the initial effort but the ball fell kindly to Wilson who volleyed the rebound through the bodies and past Barnsley.

Oxford’s best chance of the half came in the 39th minute. The ever-lively Aidan Elliott-Wheeler drove into the box and pulled it back to Zaide Took-Oxley, whose effort was blocked well to deny a certain goal.

The U’s went into half time a goal down but still very much in the game.

Oxford came out fast, with Elliott-Wheeler finding space down the right instantly. Then in the 54th minute, Franklin won United a penalty and a way back into the game.

The skipper stood up to take the penalty and calmly sent Griffiths the wrong way to level.

Coaches Chris Hackett and Pablo Haysham looked to change something to push for the win, as Ibby Sankoh replaced Iheanacho six minutes later. Elliott-Wheeler very nearly gave United the lead with twenty minutes to play, winning the ball back and driving down the right. He beat two men but was met by a strong save from Griffiths in the Wimbledon net.

United thought they had won the game with the final kick of the game, only for the linesmen to put his flag up for Groom's squared pass to Elliott-Wheeler. Into penalties it went.

Barnsley was the hero, saving three of Wimbledon's attempts including one in sudden death. The United keeper made an incredible save to his left, and Erion Zabeli stepped up to win the tie for the U's.

The U18s now face a semi-final against Cambridge United, which is most likely to be played this Saturday, the 3rd of December.

UNITED: Barnsley, Maxwell, Zabeli, Lacey, Gerrard, Franklin, Brenan, Took-Oxley, Elliott-Wheeler, Iheanacho (Sankoh, 61'), Groom

Report: Billy Lawrence


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