U18 Professional Development League 2
Team: Middlehurst, Jude-Boyd, Mahorn, Fahmy, Pitblado, Paiva, De Silva, Aoraha, Kargbo, Babajide, Mema.
Sub Not Used: Lancaster
The team sheet revealed the welcome return of Isaac Pitblado and Dillon De Silva, plus a trialist on the bench from Huddersfield, Joshua Lancaster.
In the opening minutes Dillon De Silva went on a great run down the right-wing, after doing really well to take control of a longish ball. This took him to the bye-line and his ball into the box was cleared to safety.
A great ball over to Armelindo Mema then saw him take off. His cross into the box found Hamzad Kargbo in a good position, but his effort went off-target.
Rangers took a deserved lead after nine minutes when a ball knocked into the box was headed back in from the bye-line for Bunmi Babajide to finish.
The R’s went close to doubling their lead when Kargbo’s header hit the upright following Mema’s cross into the area. Coventry equalised ten minutes later.
Dillon De Silva went on a great run from midfield, after evading some strong challenges he forced his way into the box to pull the trigger, but Keelan Fallows managed to palm the ball away.
A minute or so later, Hamzad Kargbo, twisted and turned in the box to line up his shot. His effort was deflected and the ball went behind. Babajide’s corner kick just evaded the far post.
Paul Furlong instructed Armelindo Mema and Dillon De Silva to switch wings.
De Silva had been out of action for around 12 weeks after previously injuring his shoulder in training.
The R’s right-back, Arkell Jude-Boyd, took off on a great run, which resulted in the ball going behind. Mema took the corner and his long cross was knocked back in and Kargbo’s header forced Fallows to tip the ball behind.
Then just before the break a spectacular kick by the R’s No.9 ended up just wide. Half-time: 1-1.
Paul Furlong made two changes for the start of the second-half, bringing on Mason McLean and Lemar Griffiths at the expense of Isaac Pitblado and Dillon De Silva respectively.
Mema sent over an excellent ball to Griffiths on the other wing and his cross into the box went just behind his team mate.
There was a longish delay after a Coventry player looked as if he had possibly dislocated his finger? Both physios came on to treat him and eventually he had to come off.
Play initially continued after an R’s player was clearly fouled. With Griffiths free on the right-wing, Mr Pilling then decided to blow his whistle, award a free kick and book the culprit!
Then Mason McLean was shown a yellow card after an infringement just outside the box.
After 65 minutes, Tom Middlehurst went down with what looked like a head injury? After being helped off, Max Little came on to replace him in goal.
Armelindo Mema went on an excellent run into the box, before curling the ball just wide of the far post.
Rangers took the lead after 80 minutes. Hamzad Kargbo twisted into a position that allowed him to shoot. He directed his close range effort into the far corner.
QPR scored a third goal a couple of minutes later after Kargbo had set up Armelindo Mema. The R’s No.11 ran into the box and belted the ball into the net at the near post.
A word on Bunmi Babajide, socks rolled down, he provided some very deft touches throughout the match.
The visitors pulled a goal back on 89 minutes after being awarded a penalty. Max Little saved the spot kick, but the scorer then managed to place his follow-up into the back of the net.
A minute or so later, Armelindo Mema, smashed the ball under the crossbar for his second goal of the game.
The scoring didn’t end there as the Sky Blues notched up a third in the 94th minute with a 25-yarder that sailed into the net.
Must mention the Coventry player that was booked after he had claimed for a foul against Hamzad Kargbo. Mr Pilling shook his head and told him: “No, good tackle”, which resulted in the player telling him to “Fuxk Off”!
An excellent interception in defence from Mason McLean successfully averted the danger.
After around ten minutes of added time, Mr Pilling blew the final whistle.
I don’t normally nominate a ‘man-of-the-match’, but in this case I must give it to Armelindo Mema. He never stopped running, scored two goals and in the final minutes he went down, looking like he had cramp in both legs! Despite some assistance he just couldn’t continue and limped away.
Make no mistake, this was a very good team performance and the score flattered the visitors.
The U16’s lost 1-3 on the adjacent pitch and amongst those looking on was Dean Sylvester.
Well done to Paul Furlong and his players.