Ramsbury FC U16s recorded their biggest pre-season win against Grove Challengers FC U16s from the South Oxfordshire Mail Youth League with an emphatic 9-0 score. It was a great team performance.

Playing their preferred 3-2-4-1 formation Geoff and Andy started with Noah in goal; a back 3 of Kieran, Josh (C) and Hayden, Joe and Oli as CDMs; a midfield 4 of Fred wide right, George and Euan as CAMs and AJ on the left leaving Ben P as the sole striker. Reece, Owen, Seb, Jez and Ben B were the subs. It was great that Byron (injured) came to watch and we wish Barney well who is also out injured.

The first 20 minutes were very even with both teams nervously making unforced errors. Ramsbury started to use the width of the pitch better and went close with a superb pass by George to Fred that split the Grove defence and Fred was unlucky not to score. After some great play by Kieran in defence to Oli, who alongside Joe was making great intercepts and winning numerous first and second balls, Oli calmly set up Fred to score a superb shot into the top left hand corner to make it 1-0. The goals then flowed with George scoring two quick fire goals on his debut with some neat footwork and great turn of pace after superb midfield work again by Joe and Oli and Euan. Fred on the right was constantly pressing the Grove left back and it was Fred who scored another fine goal after superb defensive work by Hayden out to AJ on the wing managed to get the ball to Fred to make it 4-0 and see Grove chasing the game.  Ben P worked tirelessly as the lone striker and went close a few times before some slick passing by Reece on the left for AJ back got the ball into the middle of the park to Jez and Euan to set up Fred for his hat trick and see Ramsbury lead 5-0 at half time. Grove were up against it!

Geoff and Andy rested George and Fred at half time put Seb on for Hayden at left back; brought AJ back on and brought on Owen at CDM with Ben B on coming on for Josh at centre half and Ben P remaining up front as the lone striker and Capt. What was good to see was Ramsbury keeping their shape and discipline as Grove made a number of changes to make a much more attacking formation. Grove used the long ball more over our defence and threatened to score and hit the post when through on goal and only some great blocks by Ben B and Seb and saves by Noah prevented Grove scoring.

Ramsbury kept at it and Jez inked up well with Joe and his fine pass to Euan saw him score an excellent goal to make it 6-0. Euan then turned provider with a superb corner for Joe to score a thundering header to make it 7-0 and the game was all but done. However, Ben P manage to get the better of the Grove defence and deserved to score after an excellent pass by Seb to make it 8-0 and although contested by the opposition linesman the goal stood. Ben P then went in goal for Noah who went onto the left wing and George and Fred came on again and Grove were really up against it with wave after wave of Ramsbury attacks with Noah, Euan, George, Fred and Jez all going close before Euan scored an absolute beauty of a goal after collecting the ball 25 yards out and curling a shot into the top left hand corner to make it 9-0. The game finished 9-0 with Fred winning moment of the match for the first goal of his hat trick (but Euan not far behind him with his 25 yard screamer!) and Oli was player of the match for a great assist and his overall measured play. Well done to both and well done to the whole squad for a very impressive performance.

Much tougher opposition next Sunday as we play Devizes Town U16s at HOME at 2PM. We will need to prepare on Saturday with training 1000-1130. Please get subs to Geoff so we are all paid up and keep looking and answering on SPOND. Cheers.

Have a great week and thanks for your support.

Jon, Geoff and Andy