Islington boys beat Tower Hamlets to secure semi-final place
12:51 11 January 2017
Stephane Mgbada scored twice as Islington Under-11s recovered from a slow start to book their Kay Trophy semi-final place with a commanding 4-0 victory against Tower Hamlets.
Mgbada gave Islington the lead after just three minutes, turning the ball over the line after Alfie Gordon’s corner had been flicked on at the near post by Tyreese Piper-Burt.
But Islington struggled to string their passes together for most of the first half and it wasn’t until just before the break that they extended their lead, with Gordon firing home a loose ball in the six-yard box.
That second goal gave Islington the platform to raise their game in the second half and they seized control without managing to convert any of the numerous chances they created.
Archie Linden unleashed a 30-yard screamer that crashed back off the post and then made a vital contribution at the other end with a last-ditch tackle to prevent Tower Hamlets reducing the deficit.
However, Mgbada made certain of his side’s victory with a close-range finish to make it 3-0 two minutes from the end.
And there was still enough time remaining for Freddie Brennan to add a fourth with a confident drive from the edge of the box.
“It was a dominant second half display from the lads, who kept going and didn’t get frustrated with the fact that they couldn’t find that deciding goal to kill off the tie,” said Islington manager Michael MacNeill. “They just kept plugging away.
“The first half was our patchiest performance so far this season but we had enough to get the result.
“Now we’ll focus on our Lester Finch Trophy campaign, which starts at the end of the month.”
Islington: Valtanen (Marshall), Linden, Piper-Burt, Joseph Gurie, Mgbada (Walker), Jonnie Gurie, Willhoft-King, Gordon (Farrington-McCarthy), Brennan.