U18 Report: Crystal Palace 2-3 Cardiff City
Cardiff City’s U18 side claimed a 3-2 win over Crystal Palace on Saturday, 21 September following a spirited second-half comeback against the Eagles. (Click above for highlights)
Goals from Harry Pinchard, Rubin Colwill and Ntazana Mayembe helped Matthew Bloxham’s side claim their second league win of the season, coming back from two goals down to claim a crucial victory.
The hosts would start the game strongly, with forward Josh Ajayi firing over the bar from close-range after ten minutes at Copers Cope.
Rubin Colwill would go close five minutes later, as City looked to match the intensity of the game from the off. He tested Jacob Russell with a powerful strike from range, but the Palace keeper was equal to Colwill’s effort.
Jaimie Cogman made a great save on 26 minutes, preventing a certain goal for the hosts in an extremely open first half. Cogman managed to deal with the threat of Rak-Sakyi, who found himself one-on-one with the City keeper, but he dealt with the danger well and kept his side level.
Eventually, the hosts would take advantage of their dominance, breaking the deadlock eight minutes before the break through David Omilabu.
Isaak Davies would have a chance just before the break though, forcing Russell into a fine save as City looked for an instant response. It wasn’t to be though, as the young Bluebirds went into the break with a one-goal deficit.
Cardiff City were handed a massive blow just minutes after the restart. David Mooney latched onto an inviting through ball, before rounding the unfortunate Cogman - firing into an empty net with 47 minutes played.
The visitors would show spirit in abundance as they looked for a crucial goal to get back into the game. Their hard work would be rewarded, as they found an instant response to going further behind. Harry Pinchard reacted quickest to a rebound from Kieron Evans’ dangerous strike, firing home from close-range to halve the deficit.
Shortly after, Matthew Bloxham’s side would net their second goal of the day to draw level with the hosts. Colwill found the bottom corner with an expertly placed free-kick from 25-yards-out after 51 minutes, leaving Russell with no chance in the Palace goal.
Sam Parsons would see a diving header saved twenty minutes from time, with Ntazana Mayembe also testing Russell from range shortly after as City pushed for a winner in south London.
It would be Mayembe who eventually netted the Bluebirds’ third and put City ahead for the first time in the game. The exciting forward was found by Siyabonga Ligendza on the edge of the box, and Mayembe’s shot rifled into the bottom corner with just four minutes of the match left. The Bluebirds would remain resolute in the final moments, holding out for a vital three points against the Eagles.
U18 FINAL SCORE: CRYSTAL PALACE 2-3 CARDIFF CITY
Crystal Palace: Russell, Thistleton, Bello, Steele, Chamberlin, Siddick (Smith 76’), Rak-Sakyi (Gordon 74’), Olodape, Ajayi, Mooney, Omilabu. Subs Not Used: Whitworth, Watson, Wright.
Cardiff City: Cogman, MacNamara, Parsons, Jones, Rippon, Chiabi, Evans, Pinchard, Davies (King 77’), Colwill (Mayembe 70’), Ligendza. Subs Not Used: Stewart, Pritchard, Ashford.