U23 Professional Development League
Team: Ingram, Kakay, Williams, Owens, Baptiste, Phillips, McDonald, Cousins, Oteh, Tilt, Osayi-Samuel
Sub Not Used: Brzozowski
As we took our seats in the South Africa Road Stand, the snow had melted, but an icy wind cut across the Stadium.
Matt Ingram started in goal following Timothy Seny Dieng’s recent departure on loan to Hampton & Richmond.
Also included in the starting line-up was 20-year-old attacking midfielder Wes McDonald, a trialist from Birmingham City, who had been on loan with Solihull Moors earlier in the season.
Rangers enjoyed good possession in the early stages, but the first real effort wasn’t until the 12th minute when McDonald shot just over the crossbar, following good work from Jack Williams and even an assist from the referee.
Whilst at the other end, Matt Ingram made a very good stop with his legs in response to Tyler Smith’s low attempt on goal.
The R’s took the lead after 22 minutes when Osayi-Samuel curled his shot into the bottom corner from just inside the box.
The visitors equalised ten minutes later after a pacey run down the right-wing and Regan Slater slotted the ball into the far corner.
Just before half time, Giles Phillips’ close-range header from Chay Tilt’s corner was tipped superbly over the bar. Half-time: 1-1.
Paul Hall introduced Charlie Fox for the second-half at the expense of Giles Phillips.
Rangers got their noses in front within six minutes courtesy of an absolute screamer from Aramide Oteh.
After 63 minutes, Osayi-Samuel went on a great run down the left flank, then cut in to the bye-line and set up the R’s captain, Chay Tilt, but couldn’t get enough power on his shot from six yards.
Then a minute later, the Blades created a number of attempts in the box, which involved a shot being blocked, Matt Ingram making a save and finally Alex Baptiste clearing the ball off the line.
On 69 minutes, Deshane Dalling replaced Wes McDonald.
After Alex Baptiste lost his man, the United player then advanced into the box and Ingram managed to get a fist to his shot at the near post.
Some good inter-play between Osayi-Samuel and Oteh resulted in the latter’s effort being well saved by Jake Eastwood.
The Blades custodian made another superb save after 73 minutes when he tipped over Chay Tilt’s goal-bound shot.
After 79 minutes, seventeen-year-old Charley Kendall came on for Aramide Oteh.
A nice lay-off from Kendall led to Jake Eastwood making another very good save from Bright Osayi-Samuel.
Despite the R’s having the best of it, Matt Ingram, was forced into making a great save towards the end of the game and secure the victory.