Cuckoos upset the nest in derby day defeat

SOUTHERN LEAGUE CENTRAL DIVISION ONE

St Neots Town       2         Yaxley        5

Yaxley deserved to win this first ever Step Four league meeting of these two Huntingdonshire sides but was flattered by the final score line.   However, this fact should not mask the fact that St Neots’ home debut performance this season was disappointing.   The match pattern was firmly set in the first twenty minutes when the visitors made a storming start to the contest scoring twice and leaving their hosts shell shocked and seemingly unable to respond.   St Neots recovered somewhat in the second period of the first half and even replied with a goal but Yaxley were always the dominant side after the break, and they gave their hosts a lesson in finishing.   Their precise and accurate passing movements always gave them the lions’ share of possession and they were able to respond each time St Neots looked like getting back into the game.   St Neots boss Mark Abbott made two team changes bringing in Mason Rhiney for the injured Alfie Conner and he preferred Sam Gomersall in attack to Tim N’Kala who started on the bench.

Spectators were still taking their seats when after six minutes Yaxley forged in front.   A Joe Butterworth free kick was knocked back from the far post and Tom Waumsley poked home from close range.   Dan Cotton saw a rising shot blocked six minutes later and the ball deflected for a corner which was headed home at the far post by Ross Watson to increase the visitors’ lead.   Yaxley’s ariel domination at set pieces was a problem for St Neots throughout the match  and they almost contributed further to their woes when a poor clearance by goalkeeper James Philp went straight to Waumsley and the keeper was greatful to be able to atone with a smart save.      After 25 minutes St Neots seemed to find some confidence as Sam Bennett saw his header from a Jake Kerins cross smartly saved by visiting keeper Aaron Butcher and then he made an outstanding save at full stretch to turn away a shot from Prince Mutswunguma that looked looking creeping under the bar at the far post.  However, St Neots’ efforts were rewarded ten minutes before the break when Mason Rhiney floated in a free kick and Sam Goode rose above the defence to pull back a goal.   St Neots’ continued to look good until half time with Bennett firing narrowly wide after good work by Joe Sutton and Lee Watkins.

Early in the second half another Goode header from a set piece was only just wide but after 52 minutes there was an unsightly melee after an injudicious challenge by Watkins.   When the officials had sorted out the only action taken was a yellow card for the St Neots skipper.   Four minutes later a free kick by Jon-Paul Duncliffe was missed by a home defender and at the far post Tom Waumsley gratefully increased the score to 3-1.   That two goals difference was only maintained for two minutes when the Yaxley defence got in a tangle allowing Prince Mutswunguma to reduce the deficit to a single goal again, and for a short time St Neots looked to be on the offensive.   However, the home defence always looked vulnerable and substitute Mikkel Fosu making his debut was caught wrong side of Charley Sanders but recovered to block his shot.   In a bid to maintain their attacking impetus, St Neots introduced Tim N’Kala to utilise his pace at the tiring Yaxley defence, but they responded by strengthening their back line.   St Neots downfall was to be self-inflicted because with twelve minutes remaining Dan Cotton got to the bye line only to be brought down by Mason Rhiney and from the penalty spot Cotton increased the score line to 4-2.   St Neots only hope was to go onto the attack and with three minutes left they were caught short in defence and from a free kick Ross Watson volleyed home his second goal of the match to complete the scoring.   In added time there was a late chance for a consolation goal for the home side but Joe Sutton’s shot was deflected for a corner.

St Neots:  Philp, Kerins, Smith, Rhiney, Goode, Shaw, Watkins, Sutton, Mutswunguma, Bennett, Gomersall

Subs:  Fosu (for Shaw 59 mins), N’Kala (for Gomersall 66 mins), Joseph (for Rhiney 78 mins), Quigley and Walker

Cards:  Watkins (Y – 52 mins), Fosu (Y – 88 mins)

Goals: Goode (35 mins), Mutswunguma (58 mins)

 

Yaxley:  Butcher, Duncliffe, Garner, Butterworth, Watson, Bettles, Waumsley (T), Hook, Sanders, Cotton, Nolan

Subs:  Gow (for Nolan 69 mins), Williams (for Duncliffe 75 mins), Waumsley (S) (for Cotton 86 mins) Stebbing and Blake.

Cards:Garner (Y – 61 mins), Cotton (Y – 82 mins)

Goals:  Waumsley (T) 2 (6 and 56 mins), Watson 2 (12 and 87 mins), Cotton – pen – (78 mins)

 

Referee:  Alistair Wilson (Boston)

Attendance:       203

 

John Walker

Youth team start the season with three points at home to Wisbech St Mary

 

THURLOW NUNN YOUTH LEAGUE WEST DIVISION

ST NEOTS TOWN U18        3     WISBECH ST MARY U18       2

Now competing in the West Division of the Thurlow Nunn Youth League, St Neots appear to be in a much more competitive division, but they made a good start with a narrow 3-2 victory over visiting Wisbech St Mary who last season finished bottom of the Division.   With six of their squad surviving from last season St Neots have the basis of some experience but at times they looked frail in defence and conceded some disappointing goals.

They got off to the perfect start after just six minutes when a neat pass through the visiting defence by Jacob Joseph set up Reif Clark whose pace took him clear of the final defender to net.   Eight minutes later out of almost nowhere skipper Adrian O’Hara unleashed a spectacular 30 yards effort that went in off the underside of the cross bar and that should have seen the side settle down to dictate play.   However, the visitors had other ideas and after Clarke had sent a free kick high over the bar the contest was on when an under hit back pass left goalkeeper Dylan Martin exposed and Wills Wright walked the ball into the unguarded net.   For a spell the visitors looked the better side with Pawel Kalvzny bringing a good save from Martin and the keeper then had to save bravely at the feet of Wright.    The half ended with action at the other end with visiting keeper Alex Bishop in action to save from O’Hara and Joseph.

There was a sensational start to the second half with three penalty kicks in twelve minutes (one saved, one missed and one scored) that was to shape the outcome.   Reif Clarke saw the keeper push his effort for a corner and at the other end within sixty seconds, Billy Barnes blasted his effort high and wide, but sanity was restored when Adrian O’Hara calmly slotted home his effort to maker the score 3-1.    Martin produced a back breaking save to keep out a shot from Ethan Drew but with both sides utilising substitutes the game became quite evenly contested with goal attempts at a premium.   Calum Hills brought the save of the match from Bishop and substitute Bradley Matzk shot over the bar and St Neots looked to be cruising to victory but three minutes from time confusion in the home defence allowed Ajay Jolly to steal in to give the visitors late hopes of a share of the spoils.   However, St Neots held out to kick off the new season with three points.

 

St Neots:  Martin, Olive, Wood, Watkins, Rowland, Howell, Nshangalume, O’Hara, Clarke, Joseph, Hills

Subs used:   Hamilton, Matzk and Payton.                                                                                                

Cards: Hamilton (Y – 76 mins)

Referee:  Nick Easey                                                                           (John Walker)

 

A solid base to build on as The Saints secure opening day point at Bedworth

BetVictor SOUTHERN LEAGUE CENTRAL DIVISION ONE

Bedworth United        0           St Neots Town       0

A draw to this season opener between two of the relegated teams was a fair outcome but St Neots boss Marc Abbott probably finished the happier of the two Managers.   A clean sheet is always good for morale but both sides had their chances with neither goalkeeper being seriously tested.   Last season at Bedworth St Neots lost to an injury time single goal so this was an improvement, but Abbott will be pondering over where his sides’ goals are going to come from.   Defensively St Neots looked sound and had the luxury of loanee defender Mikkel Fosu spectating from the bench but in the first half they looked nervous and unsure despite having wind advantage which they failed to exploit.   However, they finished the game the stronger of the two sides but still lacked the cutting edge in attack that could have produced a deciding goal.

The first twenty minutes were largely uneventful with the two sides cancelling each other out in midfield.   Bedworth wide man Lewis Chester looked capable of breaking the deadlock with some searching runs down either flank, but the finish was missing.   St Neots were guilty of conceding too many free kicks inside their own half which put them under unnecessary pressure and after 26 minutes a breakthrough looked imminent when a delightful cross field pass by Luke Rowe played Chester clear and only a last ditch recovery by Stevan Shaw saved the day for the visitors.   Rowe was then left unmarked from a set piece but headed tamely wide and from a Richard Blythe cross, Alexander Troke had his shot comfortably saved by James Philp.   As half time approached St Neots began to look more assured and when Joe Sutton was brought down on the edge of his opponents’ penalty area, Alfie Conner’s free kick was well saved by home custodian Adam Harrison who also parried another set piece from the same St Neots player.    Lee Watkins then sent a fierce shot just the wrong side of a post and the half ended with Troke heading over when he should have at least tested the keeper.

If St Neots had finished the first half on top, the home side exploded into life upon the restart with the widely travelled Mitchell Piggon having two headed attempts, but both were off target.  Tim N’Kala having a quiet match for the visitors did set up Sam Bennett on the hour but Harrison dived at his feet to save and shortly afterwards an injury to Conner forced St Neots into their first change with Mason Rhiney substituting.   Sam Gomersall also came on for N’Kala and these changes led to a change in fortune with St Neots beginning to dictate the pattern of play.   Bedworth replied with two substitutes of their own, but St Neots were creating openings and Harrison had to produce the first significant save of the match as he turned an Aaron Smith shot over the bar at full stretch,   Bennett then headed wide and the game lost some of its momentum with Referee James Cox losing patience and booking several players for relatively minor misdemeanours.   Having a quiet second half Bedworth danger man Chester had their final chance to snatch victory after a swift team move, but he shot wide and at the other end St Neots lengthy efforts by Rhiney and Watkins were comfortably saved by the home keeper.   ‘It is always good to get a clean sheet and an away point to kick off the season’ commented St Neots Assistant boss Sean Greygoose.

 

St Neots:  Philp, Kerins, Smith, Conner, Goode, Shaw, Watkins, Sutton, N’Kala, Bennett, Mutswunguma

Subs:  Gomersall (for N’Kala 63 mins), Rhiney (for Conner 63 mins), Fosu and Joseph.

Cards:  Mutswunguma (Y – 44 mins), Shaw (Y – 70 mins), Kerins (Y – 85 mins), Rhiney (Y – 90+2 mins)

Goals: none

 

Bedworth:  Harrison, Dudley, Steele, Parrott, Sharpe, Fitzharris, Chester, Blythe, Piggon, Troke, Rowe

Subs:  Blackmore (for Blythe 72 mins), Bailey-Nicholls (for Rowe 72 mins), Templeton, Anaele and McConnachie.

Cards:Sharpe (Y – 67 mins), Dudley (Y – 87 mins)

Goals:  none

 

Referee:  James Cox (Stourbridge)

Attendance:       211

 

John Walker

Looking ahead to a busy opening week

UPCOMING MATCHES PREVIEW

After what seems a remarkably short but busy start to the season the new look St Neots Town kick off their season at Step Four in a new Division of the Southern League – Division One Central. They begin with an away trip to Bedworth United who were one of the two other sides relegated with St Neots from the Premier Division at the end of last season. Bedworth could be dubbed the ‘yo-yo’ side for they have been relegated from and promoted back to Step Three with regularity. Then on Tuesday the team returns home to host their first match at Step Four since 2011/12 with their first opponents being County colleagues Yaxley. Last weekend saw the extra-preliminary Round of the FA Cup so our clubs involved in the league starts this weekend now know who they will be facing in their FA Cup Preliminary Round debut next weekend. We have a short trip through the local villages to face Godmanchester Rovers, Yaxley has to visit newly promoted Biggleswade FC and Bedworth are pitted at home against the other Southern League Central relegated side Halesowen Town. However, the focus is now on the start of the new league season and many of Marc Abbott’s side will face new opposition at the beginning of their journey in Step Four with the club.

 

John Walker

 

 

 

 

Late show sees Linton see off the Reserves in season opener

 

Cambs League Kershaw Premier Division

 

ST NEOTS TOWN RESERVES       0       LINTON GRANTA      4

 

St Neots Reserves kicked off the new season with a home defeat to Linton Granta who last season finished runners-up in the league. However, the score line fails to reflect a very encouraging start for Mark Gearing’s side. After 71 minutes of a competitive contest the game was still goalless but after the visitors had gone ahead, they ran riot scoring three further goals in the last seven minutes of the match.   Three of the four goals came from poorly defended set pieces, so the team knows where improvement is required.

In the first twenty minutes there was only a couple of noteworthy attempts on goal as defences dominated. Visiting keeper Rhys Davies saved well from James Wills and his opposite number Jake Crosby had to dash from his area to block at the feet of a forward who had gone clear. After 33 minutes St Neots were reduced to ten men for the statutory ten minutes period when Alex Minall found himself in the ‘sin bin’ for dissent – an incident copied when a visiting player suffered the same fate later in the half. The match was competitive with St Neots skipper Bobby Shillinde finding his way into the Referee’s notebook following a late challenge. St Neots had a late chance prior to the break when a rising shot from Wills was blocked by a defender.

The second period was more open with both sides creating chances and changes in formation with the introduction of substitutes. A lengthy effort by Nick Threadgold was well saved by Davies and Reif Clarke raced through the visiting defence to fire into the side netting.   Wills tested the keeper after good work by Marcel Rzeszutek, but the visitors were beginning to dominate and in one attack following a corner both Matthew Crawley and Chris McNicholas were close with headed efforts. The bulk of the goalmouth action came in the final 20 minutes. After 71 minutes Linton forged in front when from a searching Chris Palmer free kick Jacob Kitchiner opened the scoring. Then in the final seven minutes the inexperienced home side fell apart as Linton added three further goals. A defensive error let in Palmer for a simple finish and then it was a Palmer corner that was headed in at the far post by Lewis Russell.   The rout was completed a minute from time when a cross from substitute Benjamin De’Ath was deflected into the path of Dale Archer and he gave Crosby no chance from close range.

 

Reserves: Crosby, Olive, Shillinde, Minall, O’Hara, Threadgold, Clarke, Fitzpatrick, Wills, Rzeszutek, Hudson

Cautioned:  Shillinde

Subs: Okirie, Walsh, Ezeigbo, Grimes and Thompson

 

Referee: Stacey Fullicks

 

John Walker

Saints end pre-season with a six goal blast

PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY

Haverhill Rovers         3              St Neots Town       6        

St Neots completed their pre-season build up with a trip to Haverhill and Manager Marc Abbott must have been pleased overall with his sides’ performance against his former club.   However, he will be left with some food for thought regarding the frailty of his defence in the second half when they conceded two late goals.   However, he had opted to give all his squad some playing time and with six second half substitutions the side understandably looked unbalanced and less confident.   It was good to see Sam Goode back in action with a protection around his broken wrist and there was a debut for Cambridge United loanee Sam Bennett who looked an important addition to the Manager’s attacking options.

The most recent addition to St Neots’ squad, Sam Bennett made an impressive start forcing an early save from home keeper James Young and the home side were slow to get going and had only an off-target header from Max Dinnell to threaten the visiting defence.   Meantime skipper Jake Kerins was prominent bringing a fine eleventh minute save from Young but two minutes later the keeper was left helpless as Kerins sent the perfectly placed lob into the far corner of the net to open the scoring.   After 22 minutes the advantage was doubled as a Mason Rhiney free kick was headed over the goalkeeper by Sam Goode.   Two efforts from Arron Smith were well saved but after 32 minutes Prince Mutswunguma got on the end of a Tim N’Kala cross to make it 3-0.   Jordan Palmer then squandered Haverhill’s best first half opening failing to convert from close range, and Ryan Gibbs shot over the bar, but St Neots remained in control when a lengthy speculative shot by Mason Rhiney appeared to be misjudged by Young and crept in at the near post.   Right on half time a mistake by James Philp in the visiting goal allowed Alfie Carroll to loop a header from a Josh Revell cross into the net to set up the 4-1 half time score line.

Philp made up for his error five minutes after the restart with the save of the match to deny Dinnell and St Neots continued their domination with a fifth goal from a direct free kick by Alfie Connor, and a sixth after 68 minutes when Jake Kerins claimed his second goal of the match with a low shot following a corner.   At that point with all the St Neots substitutes on, Haverhill bravely adopted a more attacking approach – and it quickly paid off.   With fifteen minutes left a Jude White shot was deflected to Emery Pruden who netted to make it 6-2 and the home side had the final word three minutes later when a Palmer shot rebounded from the cross bar and Pruden claimed his second goal.

St Neots:  Philp, Kerins, Smith, Rhiney, Goode, Shaw, Gomersall, Connor, N’Kala, Bennett,  Mutswunguma

Subs:  Joseph, Walker, Sutton, Logan, Quigley and McCormick.

Cards:  Mutswunguma (Y – 79 mins)

Goals:  Kerins 2 (13 & 68 mins), Goode (22 mins), Mutswunguma (32 mins), Rhiney (40 mins), Connor (59 mins)

Referee:  Reg Barker (Mildenhall)

 

John Walker

League One MK Dons Beat The Saints In Last Home Pre-Season Game

PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY

St Neots Town       0         Milton Keynes Dons      6        

 

In their final home pre-season friendly, St Neots were outclassed by the full Milton Keynes Dons Football League side in a fairly one-sided contest.   However, it will have been a good learning curve for the fledgling St Neots side who never gave up trying despite the score line mounting against them.   Conditions worsened in the second half as the rain arrived, but the two sides produced an entertaining show for a very good-sized crowd with the visitors appreciating the run-out following the postponement of their previous match.

St Neots made a bright start when after just three minutes Prince Mutswunguma netted but was denied by a marginal offside decision.   The visitors then settled with Kieran Agard having two early chances – one well saved by James Philp and the second ballooned over the bar.   However, they did go ahead after 14 minutes when from a Hiram Boateng corner, Baily Cargill shot home through a packed area.  Boateng then saw a shot rebound from the woodwork and despite having little attacking play of note St Neots persevered and Joe Sutton shot wide after good work by skipper Jake Kerins.   Philp was the busiest man on the field saving well from Joe Mason and Jordan Houghton and he impressed with a double save to deny David Kasumu and Ayard.   However, the constant pressure by the visitors paid off with two further goals in as many minutes just before the break.   The impressive Hiram Boateng made it 2-0 with a fierce close range shot into the roof of the net and Kieran Agard scored a third goal with a tap-in.

The Dons made no fewer than nine half time changes and the replacement players took up where the senior side had left off scoring twice in three minutes within ten minutes of the resumption.   The first was probably the pick of the bunch with a four man move setting up Callum Brittain and then a defensive error let in Jordan Bowery for goal number five.   St Neots then held out for more than half an hour gradually gaining in confidence and sharing the play more evenly and creating openings of their own.   Kerins joined the attack to shoot over the bar and Joe Sutton shot wide after a good build-up.   Sam Gomarsall was then brought down on the edge of the area, but the chance went begging and after Philp had made a fine save to deny Brittain, the visitors had the last word with their sixth goal four minutes from time claimed by Joe Walsh.

St Neots:  Philp, Kerins, Quigley, Rhiney, Walker, Shaw, Gomersall, Sutton, N’Kala, Joseph, Mutswunguma

Subs:  Connor, Harris, Logan, Olive, O’Hara and Marcelle.

Cards:  Shaw (Y – 39)

Goals:  none

 

MK Dons:  Nichols, Sorinola, Reeves, Martin, Poole, Cargill, Kasumu, Houghton, Mason, Boateng, Agard

Subs:  Moore, Walsh, Brittain, Harley, Lewington, Asonganyi, McGrandles, Bowery, Davies, Nombe, Pattison.

Cards:none

Goals:  Cargill (14 mins), Boateng (37 mins), Ayard (38 mins), Brittain (51 mins), Bowery (54 mins), Walsh (86 mins)

 

Referee:  Ollie Mackey

 

John Walker

White double seals friendly win for Waders

PRE-SEASON FRIENDLY

St Neots Town       1         Biggleswade Town       3        

St Neots continued their pre-season build up as they hosted Step Three neighbours Biggleswade Town who had only narrowly missed out on a play-off place last season.   It was an entertaining match with the visitors’ deservedly running out victors’ courtesy of a strong second half performance.   The visiting side contained seven former St Neots players in their squad including last season’s skipper Matt Miles and they had the greater share of possession, but home keeper James Philp was again in fine form denying the visitors on several occasions.

Sean Lucien was an early thorn in the St Neots’ side using his pace to work possession but each time he shot wide.   St Neots first effort from Jake Kerins was easily gathered by Sam Donkin and then Liam McDevitt hit the St Neots crossbar following a corner.   A Liam Brookes shot was turned away for a corner by Philp, but after 21 minutes the Waders went ahead as the St Neots defence was exposed and Drew Richardson and Joe White set up the unmarked Sean Lucien to break the deadlock.   St Neots’ response came as Lee Watkins shot just wide after unselfish play by Tim N’Kala and Philp denied White in a Biggleswade break.   Ten minutes before the break St Neots hit back as Jacob Joseph beat a thinly disguised offside trap to advance on goal to level the scores.   A low save from Lucien kept St Neots on terms and the same visiting player had the chance to restore the visitors’ lead two minutes before the break from a harshly awarded free kick but once again Philp saved well.

The visitors began the second half strongly and Joe Walker had to clear off the line to deny Matt Ball following a Drew Richardson corner, but the pressure was maintained and when Joe Sutton tripped Lucien, a penalty kick was awarded, tucked away by Joe White.   Sutton made amends by setting up substitute Dylan Logan, but his effort was wide and then Joseph sent a fierce drive over the bar.   As the half progressed the visitors seemed to grow in confidence and White spurned two excellent chances to increase the lead with an off-target finish and a header that rebounded from the woodwork.   Philp produced the save of the match to deny substitute Kayne Jones after a defensive error and the Waders confirmed their victory with an 83rd minute third goal from Joe White.   St Neots final effort from Kerins was well saved by Donkin.

 

St Neots:  Philp, Kerins, Smith, Rhiney, Walker, Shaw, Watkins, Sutton, N’Kala, Joseph, Gomarsall

Subs:  Quigley, Harris, Logan, Olive, and Fulianty.

Cards:  none

Goal:  Joseph (35 mins)

 

Biggleswade:  Donkin, Miles, Marsh-Brown, Forbes, Gent, McDevitt, Lucien, Richardson, White, Ball, Brookes

Subs:  Soares, Reid, Bradshaw, Allinson, Smith, Thomas, Jones.

Cards:none

Goals:  White 2 (54 & 83 mins), Lucien (21 mins)

Referee:  Ashley List

 

John Walker

Higher grade Sports put five past The Saints in Midweek Melter

Pre – Season Friendly Match

St Neots Town       0       Peterborough Sports      5

 

On the back of Saturday’s win over a young Cambridge United side, Marc Abbott’s young charges entertained Peterborough Sports , newly promoted to the Premier Division this coming season and boasting among their ranks some familiar faces to Saints fans, Lewis Hilliard, Dion Sembie-Ferris, coach Lewis Webb and the currently injured Johnny Herd. Saints went into the game minus the unavailable James Philp and Lee Watkins, Alfie Connor, Jake Noble and Ben Bradley all nursing knocks so it meant a major reshuffle for Marc and his management team and plenty of players getting valuable minutes under their belts as the pre-season schedule continues.

The match began in sweltering conditions with the temperature still in the mid 20’s and this didn’t really change throughout the game.  Saints kicked off and lost possession and Sports began a period of pressure which saw St Neots only touch the ball once more, to knock the ball out of play, before our visitors opened the scoring in the 4th minute, when a cross from the right from Sembie –Ferris ricocheted off a defender and onto the in-rushing MANICHE and into the net. The lead was doubled on 26 minutes as Sembie-Ferris delivered into the box again, this time from the left and the ball was headed home by JIM STEVENSON.

A mix up between keeper and centre half allowed SPENCER  WEIR-DALEY the easiest of taps ins on 36 minutes and the fourth goal was to follow just four minutes later when MANICHE  unleashed a superb curling effort from the left hand touchline and somewhat caught young keeper McCormack in no man’s land and all he could do was watch the ball sail over his head and into the top right hand corner of the net.

Saints ended the half in the ascendancy, firstly seeing TIM NKALA shoot narrowly wide in the side netting from the tightest of angles and then a superb ball from QUIGLEY set NKALA away on goal however his final touch somewhat weakened his shot and the ball was safely gathered by  MOAT and this proved to be the final action of the first half.

Changes at half time saw youngster ADRIAN O’HARA and SAM GOMARSALL replace QUIGLEY and RHINEY.  Saints began the second Half in a better fashion and five minutes in, MUTSWUNGUMA flashed a shot agonisingly across the six yard box, just reduce the arrears and JACOB JOSEPH was upended  some 5 yards outside the box and the resultant free kick was smashed into the wall by JAKE KERINS and away for a corner which eventually came to nothing.

The visitors extended their lead after 66 minutes when possession was given away so cheaply and WEIR-DALEY converted the easiest of chances. After 78 minutes, DYLAN LOGAN, one of a number of further substitutions in the second period, stung the fingers of the keeper with a rocket from distance and a minute later, MUTSWUNGUMA shot narrowly wide from the corner of the 18 yard box.

The last real action of the game saw AARON HUDSON have an effort diverted to safety by the keeper and off for a corner and once this was cleared, the full time whistle was blown by the referee.

Obviously not the result we were hoping for but this is of secondary importance during pre-season and it was a very worthwhile run out for everyone involved and a chance for players to push their claim for a starting place on Saturday when we entertain Biggleswade Town at the Premier plus Stadium – kick off 3.00pm

 

St Neots Town: McCormack, Kerins©, Smith, Rhiney, Walker, Shaw, Joseph, Quigley, Nkala, Sutton, Mutswunguma

Substitutes: (all used) Gomarsall, Harris, O’Hara, Olive, Logan and Hudson

Cards: NONE

Goals: NONE

Young U's put to the sword by slick Saints

PRE SEASON FRIENDLY

St Neots Town   6    Cambridge United   0

With the U’s First Team up in Scotland completing their preparations at their training camp, a youthful squad containing Joe Rider who is currently at the Abbey Stadium on trial, was sent over to face Marc Abbott’s charges who, they found to be high in confidence after good performances so far in their own pre-season campaign, and were soundly beaten with Prince Mutswunguma scoring a sublime hat-trick during the first forty five minutes.

Saints took the lead after 6 minutes when SAM GOMARSALL was played through on the half way line by a pin point kick out from James Philp and he accelerated away from the defence before confidently dispatching the ball past the onrushing keeper. The lead was doubled after 26 minutes when PRINCE MUTSWUNGUMA took a free kick some 25 yards out in a central position and hit it straight into the wall but reacted first to the rebound and with his left boot, stroked the ball high into the top left corner giving the keeper no chance.

St Neots continued to probe and were rewarded with a two goals in two minutes from that man PRINCE MUTSWUNGUMA. After 41 minutes, a swift break saw the ball crossed to the left of the box and Joe Sutton delivered the perfect cross for PRINCE to pick his spot with a measured header. A minute later he completed the perfect treble with a powerful right footed shot over the keeper and into the top right hand corner to give the Saints a commanding half time lead.

A number of changes for both sides took place during the break including the entrance of one time Manchester United player Luke Chadwick but the pressure on the U’s defence was to continue and a fifth goal arrived when the linesman spotted a defender handle the ball on the line and ALFIE CONNOR stepped up to place to ball into the net from the penalty spot.

The sixth and final goal of the afternoon arrived when substitute TIM NKALA timed his run to perfection and got on the end of a defence splitting through ball to finish with aplomb past the fully stretched keeper.

Some may say “you beat a team of kids” but as the saying goes, you can only beat what’s in front of you and today the lads did that in some style. Not getting carried away, still plenty to work on and improve upon and we look forward to a stiff test on Tuesday evening when we entertain Peterborough Sports, here at the Premier Plus Stadium, kick Off 7:45pm

Video Highlights can be found here: Cambridge United Highlights

 

 

St Neots Town: Philp, Trialist, Smith, Rhiney, Noble, Shaw, Watkins ©, Connor, Gomarsall, Sutton, Mutswunguma

Substitutes Used: Nkala, Joseph, Walker, Quigley, Logan and McCormack (gk)

Attendance: 272

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