U23 Professional Development League 2
Team: Little, Drewe, Pitblado, Carlyle, Mahorn, Frailing, De Silva, Duke-McKenna, Armstrong, Bansal-McNulty, Mema
Andy Impey’s young U23’s side opened their league campaign with a home game against Hull City at the KiyanPrince Foundation Stadium.
Dillon De Silva supplied the first goalscoring attempt of the afternoon when his beautifully curled- shot from just outside the box, was tipped over by Harvey Cartwright.
Unfortunately, after going down for the second time, Dillon had to be taken off and Alex Aoraha was brought on to replace him.
Twenty minutes or so into the game and Max Little had justtwo back-passes to deal with.
The R’s took a deserved lead through Sinclair Armstrong’s tap-in from Stephen Duke-McKenna’s assist.
The home side almost doubled their lead following a corner when the QPR captain, Trent Mahorn, forced Cartwright into a full-stretch save with a clever flicked header at the near post.
The R’s notched up a second goal soon after. The Tiger’s defence really should have cleared the ball to safety, but Armelindo Mema was on hand to finish from close range.
Stephen Duke-McKenna soon added a third after cutting in and placing the ball into the corner.
As the R’s looked for a fourth, Amrit Bansal-McNulty’s angled shot was saved by Cartwright at the near post and the ball went behind for a corner. Then after an excellent run, Jake Frailing turned in the box, but his effort was blocked.
At the other end, the visitors recorded their first effort on goal. A free kick from just outside the ‘D’ sailed over the crossbar. This was followed by a very good challenge and some sound defending from Nathan Carlyle in the box. Half-time: 3-0.
Into the second-half and as Mr Blake waved play-on, Hull went on to score with their first shot on target after the ball had entered the net via the post.
I didn’t actually see what had happened, but Bansal-McNulty was shown a red card after an incident in front of the Ellerslie Road Stand.
The Tigers got back to 3-2 with a well-struck strike from just outside the box.
Following a corner, Mema’s back-flick at the near-post was well saved and then cleared to safety.
A City player got himself into loads of space and his close-range header forced a very good save from Max Little. Mason McLean came on to replace Jake Frailing.
With the R’s defence all over the place and failing to clear the ball from the box, the visitors made the scores level.
However, there was still time for the R’s to grab a dramatic winner. Stephen Duke-McKenna’s superb free kick from just outside the ‘D’ clinched it.
(Didn’t notice him at the time, but thanks to Ian for the above photo)