U15 Boys reach London Cup semi-final

South London 1-2 Brent

London Schools' FA Corinthian Shield, 11th March 2017

U15 Boys v South London

Brent beat South London beat 2-1 away from home in the quarter-final of the London Schools' FA Corinthian Shield competition, coming from behind to secure the victory.

South London started the first half strongly and almost took an early lead when they hit the bottom of the left post in the second minute before the ball was cleared for a corner. Spencer had Brent’s first effort on the South London goal but saw his header clear the crossbar before Dominic D’Souza saw his effort well saved when through on goal. 

Shammar Swaby saw his effort inside the South London penalty area blocked before William Ribeiro was unfortunate to see his headed effort strike the South London crossbar from a corner. On 27 minutes Spencer saw his powerful shot well saved and cleared before South London saw an effort just before half time deflected wide for a corner.

With Brent having the better of the latter stages of the first half, they continued to dominate the opening exchanges of the second half with Sahr Dugba and Ribeiro both seeing their shots on goal deflected wide for corners.

Brent’s Kahil Francis went close in the 41st minute but he saw his lob go over the South London crossbar before Dugba ran into the South London penalty area and found Saul Mensah but he saw his effort saved.

South London almost scored in the 47th minute when through on goal but Alan Kochanowicz in the Brent goal saved brilliantly with his legs. Moments later it was Brent’s turn to attack and Dugba saw his effort go well over the South London crossbar after a run from just inside the South London half.

With the game now wide open and both sides attacking at will it was South London who took the lead in the 49th minute when the ball was not cleared in the Brent defence and they scored with a well-placed shot from just outside the Brent penalty area.

In the 53rd minute Kochanowicz in the Brent goal prevented South London from extending their lead with another excellent save as South London looked for their second goal.

In the 58th minute Spencer equalised for Brent from a direct free kick from fully 25 yards out that hit the roof of the South London net. In the 60th minute Brent almost took the lead from another free kick and this time it was Francis who hit the South London crossbar with the goalkeeper well beaten.

With Brent now pushing forward for the winner Dominic D’Souza saw his effort in the 62nd minute superbly turned around the post when turning in the South London six-yard box and shooting with his left foot.

Barely a minute later Spencer saw his free kick hit the South London woodwork for the third time in the game. But when the ball was cleared and it landed at his feet again from fully 25 yards out his effort was too powerful and although the South London goalkeeper got his hands to the ball he was unable to prevent it crossing the line.

In the final minute South London almost equalised but Brent held on to book a semi-final against Newham.

U15 Boys into Corinthian Shield Final

Brent 4-2 Newham

London Schools' FA Corinthian Shield, 25th March 2017

Brent beat Newham in the semi-final of the London Schools' FA Corinthian Shield, coming from behind to win 4-2.

Newham began the game strongly and had the better of the opening exchanges and David Krupinski in the Brent goal did well in the opening 8 minutes, preventing Newham taking an early lead by saving well on a couple of occasions. 

Shammar Swaby had Brent’s first attempt on target before Newham took the lead in the 10th minute with a low shot across the Brent goal into the bottom right corner. Newham should have extended their lead in the 17th minute but saw their shot go well wide with just Krupinski to beat.

Brent equalised midway through the first half. Saul Mensah did well to win the ball back for Brent and when the ball was passed to William Ribeiro he reacted quicker than the Newham defenders and tucked the ball past the on-rushing Newham goalkeeper.

Newham almost retook the lead in the 22nd minute but a close-range shot was well blocked. Moments later, Krupinski spread himself large and saved with his legs and when the ball came back to Newham they saw their shot go just wide of the left hand post.

Brent’s Kahlil Francis linked up well with Mensah but Mensah’s shot was saved. Brent's next opportunity came when Ribeiro was through on goal but was unable to control the ball due to the windy conditions; the ball ran through to the goalkeeper.

Ray Lluka saw his 20 yard effort well saved before Francis passed to Ribeiro, but once again the ball ran through to the Newham goalkeeper. 

Brent took the lead in the 36th minute when Mason Spencer took a free-kick from 25 years out on the right touch line and Ribeiro got the slightest of touches to deflect the ball past the stationary Newham goalkeeper to give Brent a 2-1 lead.

Ribeiro almost extended Brent’s lead in the opening minute of the second half, shooting wide. However, Ribeiro completed the hat-trick his play deserved in the 44th minute. Once again, the striker reacted quickest to prod the loose ball home after the Newham goalkeeper was unable to hold the ball from a shot to make it 3-1.

Swaby went close for Brent in the 48th minute shooting wide before Ribeiro chased a back pass to the Newham goalkeeper and was very unfortunate to see the attempted clearance ball bounce off him and go inches wide of the Newham goal. 

Brent deservedly extended their lead in the 75th minute when Swaby found Lluka in the 75th minute and his strike was well placed from the edge of the penalty area, putting his team 4-1 ahead. Francis almost made it 5 -1 when he beat two Newham defenders before hitting a shot that was well saved.

Newham pulled a goal back in the 79th minute and in the second minute of stoppage time Spencer cleared a Newham shot off the Brent goal-line to prevent Newham from getting their third and creating a scoreline which would not have been a true reflection of Brent’s dominance of the game.

Under-15 Boys draw with Barnet

Barnet 1-1 Brent

Middlesex Schools' FA, Star Shield, 4th March 2017

Brent missed an opportunity to extend their lead at the the top of the Star Shield table as they drew 1-1 away to last season's champions Barnet. Brent started the first half strongly with Javarn Bernard seeing his cross palmed over the Barnet crossbar. Felix Amoah saw his effort well saved before Bernard saw another cross deflected for a corner before Dominic D’Souza went through on goal but saw his effort well saved. 

Barnet almost took the lead against the run of play heading just wide before Bernard through on goal saw his effort on goal go wide. Barnet themselves had two efforts on goal well saved before great work from Amoah down the left wing saw his cross met by Saul Mensah who shot wide. Mensah did well to force a Brent corner that was cleared and with Barnet shooting wide just before half time the half ended 0-0. 

Brent started the second strongly with Amoah seeing his effort from 20 yards clear the Barnet crossbar before Sahr Dugba saw his shot from 25 yards tipped over the crossbar. Brent took the lead in the 53rd minute when Mensah passed to Kaklil Francis and his shot from left to right across the Barnet was powerfully drilled home from just inside the Barnet penalty area. 

Barnet equalised in the 57th minute with a shot from outside the Brent penalty area that hit the inside frame of the Brent goal and bounced out. Brent almost regained the lead in the 58th minute when Dugba beat two Barnet defenders before seeing his cross hit the far post and go out for a goal-kick. 

Aamar Malik, standing in for both of Brent’s injured goalkeepers, did superbly well in the 62nd minute to prevent Barnet taking the lead, saving at point blank range. 

With only two minutes remaining Brent had three attempts on the Barnet goal to score the winner but were firstly denied when a header from Francis was acrobatically tipped over from just under the Barnet crossbar from a Mason Spencer free-kick. Then with barely a minute remaining on the clock Mensah saw his effort go agonisingly wide from an acute angle when the ball was dropped by the Barnet goalkeeper.

Finally, with the last kick of the game Francis saw his effort on the Barnet goal strike the woodwork once again. 

Brent may now have to outscore Barnet in their final two league games against Camden & Islington on the 18th March and then in their final league game away to Haringey to decide who ends the season as champions.

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