24th March 2016 by Martin Watson - UITC
Hereford U 14 magnificent cup run in Nerf Junior Premier League national cup ended on Saturday when they were beaten in the last 8 by Reading FC ( Swindon ) 3-1 who are the top seeds in the competition. Liam Brewer reports:
Reading Development U14s 3 – 1 Hereford U14s (JPL National Cup Quarter-Final)
Hereford were again missing their 22 goal striker through it being the last game of his suspension so they again played with the one striker (Sam Williams) backed by a five man midfield in a diamond shape. The players have adapted to this system really well and show improvements in implementing it every week.
The game started with a very high tempo as Reading tried to stamp their authority on the game from the outset. However once Hereford had repelled this they grew into the game and took the game to Reading for long periods. Indeed the first chance fell to Hereford’s Sam Williams which the keeper saved and almost straight away Hereford found themselves 1-0 down when Reading’s own star striker Gabe Costello (25 goals) unleashed an unstoppable volley from just outside the six yard box. Far from this damping Hereford’s spirit they pressed forward in numbers with some great wing play from Luke Bufton as he tormented the Reading defence.
The game was now end to end and Will Byng was having to work overtime to break up attacks before they were able to get at the Hereford defence. Half time came at 1-0 to Reading and after a brief spell of Hereford pressure which ended with a fantastic strike from Josh Bridges being saved superbly by the Reading keeper they scored two goals in two minutes from Rahan Limbu who was the stand out performer for Reading.
Hereford regrouped from this set back and the game continued end to end with Max Farmer in the Hereford goal making some outstanding stops and Shaun Yalland dominating the crowded midfield area with quick feet. Hereford by now had gone to a more standard formation with the versatile Lollan Guinane effortlessly moving from full back to striker. With ten minutes left he scored with a delightful chip over the Reading keeper which raised Hereford’s spirits and they could easily have scored a second in the last 5 minutes which would have set up a tremendous finale.
It was however not to be and the cup run was over but Hereford can be proud of the performance they put in as everyone contributed to what was a fantastic spectacle of football by both sides.
The final accolade to the Hereford team was given as they have been invited for a return game in pre – season as the Reading management praised the way the Hereford team played and had caused them numerous problems adding that Hereford were the best technical side they had faced this season.
Hereford UITC U14 squad – Max Farmer, William Byng, Joshua Bridges, Luke Bufton, Toby King, Henry Hancocks, Jack Sage, Sam Williams, Owain Woodcock, Lollan Guinane, Shaun Yalland, Will Thomas, Toby Raison, Rob Whitlock ( Captain )
Scorer – Lollan Guinane
Manager – Daniel Emery
Assistant Manager – Simon Phillips