Puma Youth Alliance Cup Group 3
Team: Goodchild, Brown, Wright, Ford, Harris, O’Brien, Balanta, Coyne, German, Rose, Arthur.
Subs: Crowther, Vanterpool, Davenport, Morgan-Cummings and Parker (formerly known as Gardner)
After the usual magnificent sausage roll and cup of tea, I looked around for the ‘Saturday Morning Mob’ and in particular a visitor today, Dag who was over from Norway for a few days. Alan Barnes, Roger Stokes and Robbie were standing as usual by the corner flag adjacent to the goal the R’s were attacking. No Froods or Pat Harrison yet so it looked like it was down to me to put together the report for the Site. Luckily, I had a few blank pages in a notebook and started to scribble down the team as the game kicked off 6 minutes late.
After a few minutes, Balanta forced an excellent save from their keeper from close range. A looping header from Ed Harris following a free kick looked like it was going to sneak in the corner but was saved. The R’s dominated the early stages and the visitor’s first real attack came after 12 minutes. Barnet counter attacked with a diagonal ball that put through their player in loads of space but Chris Goodchild made a good save with his legs. It was good to see Gary and Kalitsa Parrett supporting the R’s, Dean was playing in Estonia the following day for the England U17’s against Malta. By now Dag had joined us and Froods had also arrived but he was going to leave early because he had won a hospitality package with ‘IN – 2 – WIN’, so I carried on scribbling.
They broke through on 25 minutes and a curling shot hit the post. Following a nice passing movement, Romone’s shot hit with the outside of his foot, dipped and went just over the bar. Rangers hit the bar following a free kick just inside Barnet’s half. Another free kick resulted in the R’s taking the lead 5 minutes before half time. Rose was brought down just outside the box and Chris Arthur from within the ‘D’ thumped the ball low and hard into the corner after a slight deflection. Half Time: 1-0.
We walked down to the next vantage point and joined Pat and Tom Harrison. I had a chat with Dag about the Scandinavian Fanzine which he tells me, has an impressive 250 subscribers. You soon felt that the visitors had given their all for after the interval the gaps started to appear and the R’s full backs pushed up. Lee Brown made a good run and forced a corner but their keeper made a comfortable save from a header following the corner. 8 minutes in and Chris Arthur crossed and Romone Rose made space for himself and thumped the ball home from inside the box. 7 minutes later, Balanta was brought down and his well taken penalty made it 3-0. A lovely run by Chris Arthur saw him cut in and with no wide player to pass to, he kept going and on entering the box, his shot went just over.
A good shot from Rose found their keeper well placed to make the save. With the R’s totally dominant and Barnet looking more and more jaded, Morgan – Cummings came on for Rose and Davenport replaced Arthur. In the 78th minute, Billy Coyne swung in a corner and Balanta found the net with a glancing header from close range. Cyrus was introduced a few minutes from the end, replacing German. The match had started late again but probably with a shortened interval, it seemed to finish on time. Rangers were already through to the next stage of the Competition but they romped home with ease with Barnet not able to maintain their 1st half periods of doggedness coupled with a few real chances to find the net. Well done to the team and thanks to Roger for the lift to the Bush.