U23 Professional Development League
Team: Herdman, Akinola, Genovesi, Wallen, Christie, Fox, Tilt, Stylianides, Grego-Cox, Rowe, Darbyshire
Sub Not Used: Dickinson
This match was switched to Harlington because of the behind closed doors friendly against Charlton at Loftus Road.
Josh Wallen was nominated captain and a trialist featured at No.5. Central defender Sinn’kaye Christie had played for non-league Wealdstone and more recently he has been with the Nike Academy.
Rangers almost took the lead in the opening minutes when Reece Grego-Cox was through on goal and his shot appeared to come off the keeper’s knee and behind for a corner.
However he made no mistake after 6 minutes when he was on hand to pounce on a rebound following Danny Darbyshire’s initial effort.
QPR went close soon after when the ball was cleared off the goal-line.
The U’s impressive left-winger, Tariq Issa, was tripped just inside the box and Mr Harris correctly awarded a penalty. Not the best spot-kick but Martin Herdman still had to dive to his left to make his save.
Reece Grego-Cox was quick to intercept a loose ball and went on to fire his shot at goal, which was well saved. From the resulting corner, two R’s players went for the cross, but a header was still managed at the far post and the ball ended up evading the crossbar.
Colchester equalised after being awarded a corner, which should never have been given. The Harlington Afternoon Crew were situated close by, but the officials really should still have had a clear enough view to award a goal kick!!!
Following the corner, one of the U’s players was fouled and injured in the box and Mr Harris once again pointed to the spot. The player limped off, the kick was saved (again), but this time the ball ended up in the back of the net.
They scored their second five minutes or so before half-time after Christie had given the ball away. As he tried to make amends he fell over the advancing Martin Herdman and all Tarryn Allarakhia had to do was slot the ball into the net. Half-time: 1-2.
We noticed that Chris Ramsey was giving the team talk during the break.
Into the second-half and Zenon Stylianides went on a lovely run through midfield, hesitated to spin round, but then lost possession.
Reece Grego-Cox went off after 52 minutes with what looked like a slight twinge and Kingsley Eshun came on.
Although goalscoring opportunities were few and far between for the R’s, Danny Darbyshire did get into a good position and saw his effort come off of a defender and behind for a corner. Then Eshun ran through clear on goal, but his shot was well stopped by Daniel Wilks.
I had wondered why Romeo Akinola was put at right-back? He was up against a very good left-winger and not surprisingly he became more frustrated. The other trialist, Sam Chaney, replaced him after 60 odd minutes.
Tariq Issa scored the U’s third goal, when, from his turn, he hit the back of the net from close range despite Herdman getting a hand to the ball.
Eoin McKeown added a fourth when he struck the ball on the outside of his foot with the R’s keeper going the wrong way.
Caden Genovesi was down receiving treatment and he eventually had to be helped off which saw the introduction of Hugo Cardoso on 74 minutes.
Courtney Senior fired the ball low into the near post to complete the drubbing.
Mick Harford was at the match and I later ascertained that 21 year-old Sam Chaney was on Torquay United’s books.