Opening league game triumph for St Albans City U18s

AFTER scoring four in the FA Youth Cup win against Romford, St Albans City’s Midweek Youth team travelled to Aylesbury for a tough first league encounter in the Allied Counties Premier Division and triumphed 4-1.

Both teams met last season in a thrilling cup encounter at Clarence Park which resulted in a last minute 4-3 win for Saints after going 2-0 down, but this time it was Saints who started strongly.

Despite bruising tackles from the home side and weathering the initial pressure, City put the match out of sight by scoring three goals in five minutes.

On 15 minutes City won a free-kick 30 yards out which Danny McCarthy swung to the back post for centre-back James Kaloczi.

Unfortunately for the hosts the ball took a deflection and dropped over keeper Joe Cooper in goal and in the net at the near post.

Five minutes later a swift counter-attack by winger Abo Eisa and a quick one-two with Elliot Bailey saw Eisa receive the ball on the edge of the box.

With the keeper advancing out of goal his low shot rifled inside the left hand upright.

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Aylesbury were reeling from these two quick goals but it was still a shock to see the Aylesbury net bulging yet again within just 30 seconds of the restart.

Ken Ogbuagu was the beneficiary this time when a poor back-pass to the keeper resulted in a sliced kick and a present of a ball in front of an open goal.

Saints looked to score a fourth before half-time but Aylesbury rallied to keep the visitors at bay.

In the second half Aylesbury attacked with vigour. After a prolonged period of pressure a corner from the right was met full-on by Alex Collard and his downward header bounced up high into the net.

At this point City looked to be the team on the ropes, but strong defending by Laurence Wroe and tackling from Jack McNamara saw the visitors through the Aylesbury storm.

As the match progressed into injury time it was City who had the final say with Bailey being rewarded for his selfless running.

He chased a long ball over the top and to cap a dismal evening for Cooper in the Aylesbury goal his skyward header fell to Bailey who lobbed the last defender for a final 4-1 scoreline.