Under-18s secure three points in six goal thriller
Our under-18s Representative Squad came through a competitive Jersey FA side to win 4-2 in the South East Counties Youth Championship on Remembrance Sunday.
Jay Lovetts side were looking to build on their 1-0 win over Essex in the opening game but were made to work against a very game Jersey FA.
After a slow start to the game it was Jersey who had the game’s first big opportunity when Kushal Frankson sped past James Beresford to put it on a plate for Ryan Marcinko who had his shot blocked sublimely by Max Blencowe.
If that wasn’t enough of a warning, Sussex were made to pay with an almost identical attack with Frankson breaking down the right and with a superb cross, it was an equally superb header by Marcinko to put Jersey ahead.
Only minutes later it could have got even worse for Sussex when Maricinko, now with mountains of confidence, volleyed inches wide of Seymour’s far post.
Sussex needed some more energy and Jasper Pattenden found an opening from nowhere when he charged at the Jersey defence, unleashing from outside the box and beat Jersey stopper Adam Le Lere thanks to a vicious deflection to level the score.
However, it was short-lived for Sussex and found themselves behind again only minutes later when Tommy Boarer was left in acres of space to strike cleanly into Seymour’s near post to put them back in front.
It was clear that Sussex needed a change of pace and found it by bringing on Lewis Veneti. The forward made an immediate impact when, after running at Jersey’s defence unchallenged, he struck from range catching Le Lere by surprise who let it slip through his hands to once again level the score.
At half-time Lovett decided it was time to introduce more changes in the form of Jay Popham, Sam Wright and Olly Munt. Popham made a big impact coming on against Essex and this was to be no different only minutes into the second-half when he beautifully chested down from the edge of the box and volleyed into the near corner.
Now 3-2 up Sussex looked the more dangerous and finally were able to take control of possession. The momentum of the game was brought to a halt however on the hour mark with back-to-back injuries, firstly from Sussex’s Taylor Seymour and then Jersey’s Dan Burton.
With play continuing Sussex looked to kill the game off with 10 minutes plus injury time remaining, charging at Jersey in numbers.
They were almost made to pay, however, when Jersey countered, and Jan Bentley forced a fantastic reaction stop from Seymour.
But, in stoppage time, Sussex were able to kill the game when Veneti played in Jay Popham who, one-on-one with Le Lere, coolly slotted past the Jersey ‘keeper.
Following the match Jay Lovett had this to say: “Jersey did make us work for it today but at the same time we made hard work of it ourselves we didn’t create as much as we would have liked but that’s obviously credit to Jersey as well.
“We’ve got lucky with the first couple of goals, but we got back into the game, yes we have played better but we came through and got the result in the end.
“Against Essex we were putting balls into the box and creating many chances. We still tried to play good football, but we struggled in the more advanced areas.
“The sign of a good team, however, is that you still come away with the points even when you haven’t had a particularly good day at the office and that’s what we did today.”
(A selection of photographs can be found on Facebook - courtesy of Simon Roe Photography)
(Video highlights are available above and on YouTube - courtesy of Your Instant Replay)
Goals: 4-2; Shots: 16-7; Shots-on-target: 10-3; Corners: 9-1; Offsides: 2-1; Fouls: 8-6; Yellows: 0-0; Reds: 0-0
Sussex: Seymour, Harper, Beresford, Honore, Blackmore, Blencowe, Santos, Stevens, Ramsis, Freeman, Pattenden.
Subs: Popham, Veneti, Bateman, Munt, Wright.
Jersey: Le Lere, Thomas, Appleton, J. Dos Santos, Sutcliffe, Burton, Frankson, Harris, Marcinko, Boarer, R. Dos Santos.
Subs: Rivers, Hamilton, Bentley, Medcalfe.