QPR U18 (0) – Crewe Alexandra U18 (3)

U18 Professional Development League 2

Team: Hudnott, Springer-Downes, Hamalainen, Butler, Garnett, Matthews, Komodikis, Donnellan, Mitford, Corkery, Shodipo.

Subs: Herdman, Williams, Crichlow, Darbyshire, Adams.

As we awaited the kick-off, Alan Barnes pointed out to us that Paul Furlong had in fact used six goalkeepers already this season.

The match got underway slightly later than the scheduled 12 o’clock kick-off and within a minute or so the visitors missed a very good opportunity from close range. The R’s were living dangerously as a minute later, Crewe cut through the Rangers defence and it took an excellent block to erase the immediate danger. From the resulting corner, a free header cleared the crossbar.

At the other end, a poor back-pass was almost intercepted by Tyrell Mitford but the Crewe keeper just managed to clear the ball to safety. The assistant running the line in front of us would respond quite loudly when a Crewe player(s) decided to remonstrate with him. “It came off your head mate” he said on one occasion after he had awarded a disputed throw-in to the R’s.

Paul Furlong made various changes during the half with Andreas Komodikis switching wings with Olamide Shodipo. Later Tyrell Mitford moved out wide and Shodipo took up a more central position. Half-time: 0-0.

Into the second-half and Conor Hudnott made an outstanding save, but a minute or so later Crewe took the lead. Charlie Kirk planted the ball in the net following a quick counter-attack. The visitors then had a goal ruled offside and following a defensive error, Chris Speed was able to turn in the box and place his shot for number two.

Rangers were finding it increasingly difficult breaking down a well-organised defence and the visitors almost added a third when following another counter-attack at speed, Conor Hudnott managed to clear the danger after getting a foot to the ball. However, Chris Speed notched up another goal after one effort had been saved close to the post.

That goal was the 14th conceded in a run of three straight defeats. During the course of the half, Paul Furlong made two changes with Dan Darbyshire and Trey Williams replacing Nicholas Hamalainen and Andreas Komodikis respectively.

A diminished Harlington Crew also included Alan Barnes, Roger Stokes and Clive Kingham.

Steve Russell