14 Feb WWSET U18’s Triumph in Tring
Tring Athletic 1 Wycombe Wanderers SET 2
After 10 weeks without a fixture, the boys from Wycombe Wanderers SET finally had a game vs Tring Ath on Wednesday 13th Feb 2019. It has been well documented that Wycombe are developing young talented footballers within this programme and that was again on show with 8 of the starting 11 being U16, 2 were U17 and only 1 was an actual U18
Skipper Max Bowles won the toss and elected to go up the slant of the Grassroots Stadium. A decision that would prove very important..
The first half was understandably slow and rusty from WWSET, as they probed and probed to find some rhythm to their play. However they were faced with a very determined Tring Ath side who were playing in front of a huge home fan base. Tring were definitely coming out on top in the possession stats and dominated the territory, pinning WWSET into their own half of the field for huge periods. But the problem for Tring was that they rarely threatened the WWSET net, In the main due to a rock steady back 5 of Aron, Kyle, Archie, Tom and Lewis.
Tring have acquired a No.9 who at 6ft 2 and built like a man was their main target for many of their attacks. But WWSET centre halves Archie Goodliff and Tom Roberts between them reduced his actual goal threat to a minimum.
After some calm wise words at half time and slight tactical changes – WWSET came out motivated and a lot more creative, definitely taking more care in possession as they shortened up their passing game and started to create real problems for the Tring defence who had hardly been tested in the 1st 45mins. Half time substitute Fabian Garcia’s pace up top was also posing a totally different proposition for the Tring backline.
When Josh Kurton picked the ball up 20 yards from goal and drove into the box, he was uncompromisingly tripped up by a Tring defender , leaving the referee with no alternative but to point to the penalty spot. Josh took the penalty himself and thundered his strike down the middle to give WWSET a 1-0 lead.
Captain Max Bowles had picked up a slight groin strain – so he made way for Josh Ralphson making his seasonal debut for WWSET and with his very first touch could have doubled WWSET’s lead. Playing on the blindside of the Tring right back – Josh was slid in by a magnificent split pass from Pat Coyle, however the chance seemed to have come a little too soon for Josh as the recovering defenders smothered his effort.
Another feature of WWSET’s 2nd half performance was the marauding runs of full back Kyle Kerr-Miller. His athletic game play and enthusiasm provided another valuable outlet for the WWSET central midfielders.
With the clock ticking down to the last 15mins of the game, Tring managed a moment of quality as their left fullback drove down the left flank evading 2 challenges before standing up a cross which was headed home by their striker 1-1. A goal a little against the run of play at the time but you could not deny the quality of the run and cross.
With a 1-1 draw seeming to be the inevitable outcome – WWSET’s Coach Asare sensed an opportunity to go for all 3 points & subbed central midfielder Ben Peters who had played well but clearly fatigued, for captain Max Bowles who had recovered from his earlier injury. Within moments a ball from Kyle on the right found its way to Sebastian who held the ball up well before sliding in Fabian on the edge of the box. Fabian swiveled on the ball before dinking an aerial pass to the advancing Max Bowles – who chested the ball, then took a deft touch to evade the centre half before planted his shot past the Tring Keeper 1-2 provoking Scenes of Joy from the WWSET Players and Coach Asare….
WWSET were very disciplined in the remaining minutes and ran out deserved victors in the end. Especially when you consider the extraordinary length of time that this squad have not played a competitive fixture it was quite an amazing feat to gain that result away from Home.
Squad: Kanyai, Kerr-Miller, Goodliff, Sassy-Roberts, Patrick, Layman, Kurton, Bowles, Peters, Coyle, Saunders.
Subs: Asare, Garcia, Ralphson