U18's Beat Cardiff To Make Quarter Finals

Last night the U18's booked their place in the FA Youth Cup Quarter Finals and a tie away to ...

Last night the U18's booked their place in the FA Youth Cup Quarter Finals and a tie away to Newcastle now awaits. In a tough game with dogged opposition the boys eventually managed to run out 2 - 0 winners but should have won my more in truth.

Given the recent games that have been cancelled due to the weather manager Viveash had a larger selection of players that usual to draw from from this game against Cardiff. Mitchell Beeney continued in goal whilst the back 4 consisted of regular Fankaty Dabo at right back a center back pairing of Andreas Christensen and Dion Conroy and Ola Aina at left back. The midfield 2 was Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Jordan Houghton with the attacking midfield trio Jeremie Boga, Alex Kiwomya and Charlie Colkett behind striker Dom Solanke.

The game got off to an absolute flyer for Chelsea after a mix up at the back saw the Cardiff defender try and head the ball back to his keeper but it was not strong enough and Dom Solanke got there before the Cardiff Keeper. Solanke still had a lot to do however but his first time flick towards goal was perfect enough to get past the keeper and just about inside the far post to give Chelsea an early lead.

That goal would prove to be of huge benefit to Chelsea as it made Cardiff's game plan more difficult to full implement and to be fair their game plan worked very well were it not for the fact that Chelsea were already 1 goal to the good. Cardiff set themselves out with 2 very compact banks of 4 and were chasing down the Chelsea player on the ball doggedly, this lead to a very scrappy first half in which hardly any chances were very scarce and the game became very scrappy. Chelsea had more of the possession but could not do anything with it with so many players to try and get around.

In the second half things started more brightly and it was clear that chances would come in this half. Cardiff realising that holding the game at 1 - 0 and not being able to slightly trouble Beeney was not going to get them anywhere had to come forward more and they did start to put pressure on our back 4 but that would inevitably leave gaps for Chelsea to expose and that they started to do. Ola Aina fed a ball through to Solanke who was on goal with the keeper flying out, Solanke go to the ball first and the keeper cleaned out Solanke but the contact was outside the box so only a free kick but a yellow card for the keeper.

Solanke would then get another chance to double Chelsea's lead after good work by Reece Mitchell who was having a good impact down Chelsea's left side of side crossed into the box to Solanke who had a free header 6 yards out but only managed to head over. It was an uncharacteristic miss by Chelsea's leading scorer at all levels but it would not be his first of this night.

Chelsea were controlling proceedings but Cardiff were still trying to make things hard with their 2 midfielders who had been chasing down Chelsea players like madmen often connecting late and leaving a foot in trying to break our rhythm but the chances still came for Chelsea. Alex Kiwomya worked himself some space nicely and unleashed a shot across the goal from the edge of the box which beat the keeper but came back off the post to Boga who hit it back towards goal but the keeper reacted smartly and was up and able to save that effort.

Shortly after Kiwomya would get another good chance and this time double Chelsea's lead. More industrious work by Mitchell down the left saw him beat a defender for pace and then hit a low ball into the box which took a deflection and found its way to the feet of Kiwomya who was unmarked and able to get a clean shot on goal from about 8 yards out and he made no mistake scoring and securing the win for the Blues in the process.

There would be another huge chance for Solanke with a close range header before the end but this one he was again unable to get on target as he hit the bar this time, on another day Solanke could have had 3 or 4 but his one goal was a vital one and enough along with Kiwomya's effort to send Chelsea in the quarter finals again of the youth cup.


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