QPR U18’s (3) – Ipswich Town U18’s (5)

FA Youth Cup 3rd Round

Team: Goodchild, Coyne, Ford, Lawrence, Brown, Arthur, M.O’Brien, Davenport, Parker, Balanta, Rose.
Subs Used: Morgan-Cummings for Parker, Harris for Ford and Vanterpool for Arthur.
Subs Not Used: L.O’Brien and Smith

I went onto the FA Website recently to check the ruling on the players age limit and it stated on there that, “Only those players are eligible to take part who have not reached the age of 18 years as at midnight on 31st August of the current Season.”

With many spectators still arriving, the visitors broke through but with a hint of offside, he scuffed his shot well wide in the first minute. Some of the boys were still looking nervous when our two wide players swapped sides and Joe English arrived seventeen minutes into the game. After 25 minutes, Angelo Balanta, who had made his 1st Team debut the night before, was fouled just outside the box. As Chris Arthur prepared to take the free kick, two R’s players stood very close to the ball and directly in front of him. He then curled the ball into the top corner and the R’s were 1-0 up. 3 minutes later, a great ball found Balanta in space but he fired his shot well over. With 33 minutes gone, Romone Rose spun on a sixpence and powered the ball home from close range. 2-0 but the visitors soon pulled a goal back 2 minutes later when a header hit the underside of the bar and then came out again, Chris Goodchild was booked for his protests but I have to say that it looked over the line to me. Half Time: 2-1

Billy Coyne made a superb interception and resulted in a magnificent run that was almost box to box. The half time optimism began to evaporate as Ipswich had a quick succession of chances early on. A good run by an Ipswich player brought out a great save from Goodchild in the one-on-one situation. The visitors then missed another easy opportunity from close range a minute later. This was followed by yet another good chance when a diagonal ball into the box was squandered. A 30 yard power strike went just inches wide and with so many chances, the equaliser looked imminent. The R’s still had opportunities though and a great pass from Balanta found Rose who shot just wide. Romone then had another chance when he did well to get to the ball ahead of the keeper but his lob went agonisingly wide.

With 16 minutes to go, Romone Rose belted number three with a low, powerful shot into the net. Although some of the players were tiring the last 10 minutes were eventful for the wrong reasons as Ipswich fought back with a quick succession of goals. Goodchild came out for a ball, punched it close to the feet of their striker who then easily slotted it home. About 5 minutes later, a cross from the right was put away with a diving header to level the scores at 3-3. Then a minute after that, the visitors took the lead with a goal from close range. Ipswich scored yet another in added time when their striker ran clean through the middle and curled his shot in from just outside the box.

The attendance in the South Africa Road Stand was around 500 and it was good to see Gary and Kalitsa Parrett with Dean before the game and Gerry Francis was sitting in the Directors’ area. I always look forward to the FA Youth Cup and we knew that Ipswich would pose a hard contest. They had actually won it two years ago but to concede 4 goals in the latter stages of the game was very disappointing. Their star player was Jordan Rhodes who grabbed a hat-trick.

Steve Russell