U18s Report: Dominant Palace share spoils with Villa
Crystal Palace Under-18s came back from a two-goal deficit, despite a dominant performance, to draw 2-2 with Aston Villa on a sunny Saturday afternoon at Bodymoor Heath.
Rob Quinn named the same starting XI which won against West Brom two weeks ago
Owen Goodman denied Chisom Afoka in the opening minute
Fionn Mooney had Palace’s first chance of the game
Delay in play as Villa’s skipper Aaron O’Reilly got injured and limped off
Kalani Barton nearly opens the scoring after an excellent team move halfway through the first-half
Villa took the lead from the spot through Dewain Sewell 36 minutes in
Half-time: Aston Villa 1-0 Crystal Palace U18s
Palace started the second-half brightly, Maliq Cadogan stung the palms of the Villa ‘keeper from kick-off
Jadan Raymond’s free-kick from 25-yards out nearly crept in five minutes later
Raymond dribbled past two defenders but just couldn’t squeeze it in before the hour mark
Villa doubled their lead through Kyrie Pierre 66 minutes in
Tayo Adaramola pulled one back for the young Eagles two minutes later
Cadogan slotted the equaliser home in the 73rd minute
Ademola Ola-Adebomi hit the post moments later after a well worked free-kick
The young Eagles pushed for a winner, but the Villa defence stood firm
Full-time: Aston Villa 2-2 Crystal Palace U18s
Rob Quinn named an unchanged lineup from the dramatic 3-2 victory over West Bromwich Albion with leading goalscorer Victor Akinwale up front and captain Joe Sheridan at centre-back.
The hosts kicked-off and tested Owen Goodman in the Palace goal in the opening minute. The young ‘keeper got down well to tip a shot from Villa’s Chisom Afoka past the post.
Fionn Mooney skipped past Villa goalkeeper James Wright and nearly put the young Eagles in front five minutes in, however he was denied by the recovering Villa defence.
Palace grew into the game from this chance, dominating the ball with skipper Sheridan dictating the play from centre-back.
Half way through the first-half, Palace’s right-back Kalani Barton nearly capped off a fantastic move from front to back. Starting with left-back Tayo Adaramola inside the Palace half, a succession of passes across the pitch saw Barton fire a shot on goal inside the box that was denied by Wright.
Mooney came close once more just before the half hour mark, though his shot from the edge of the box went just over the bar.
The hosts took the lead 35 minutes in, against the run of play, through Dewain Sewell. The Villa No. 9 scored from the spot after Ajani Burchall was brought down inside the box on a counter attack.
The young Eagles looked to respond immediately and nearly did so through Maliq Cadogan. The winger latched on to a knock on from Akinwale and danced his way into the box doing stepovers, however his effort was well saved by Wright.
Palace went into the break trailing, though they enjoyed the majority of the ball and created most of the chances.
The south Londoners had the better of the opening exchanges in the second-half, with Maliq Cadogan stinging the palms of Wright from kick-off and Jadan Raymond firing a free-kick inches away from the top corner.
Cadogan was causing trouble for the Villa defence once more, after his shot was deflected into the six-yard box - though the onrushing Raymond and Akinwale couldn’t poke it in.
The hosts doubled their lead 66 minutes in through Kyrie Pierre, though the young Eagles responded brilliantly only two minutes later through Tayo Adaramola. The left-back pulled one back for the Eagles inside the box after linking up well with Cadogan down the left-hand side.
Cadogan went from provider to goalscorer moments later, equalising for Palace in the 72nd minute. The winger calmly slotted home into the bottom right hand corner past the helpless Villa ‘keeper.
Palace’s response was almost complete in eight minutes, though second-half substitute Ademola Ola-Adebomi saw his effort bounce back off the post after a well worked free-kick routine from Mooney and Sheridan.
The young Eagles pushed to get their noses in front and come away with all three points, with multiple efforts from Akinwale, Cadogan and central midfielder David Ozoh - however they couldn’t find a breakthrough.
Despite Palace’s dominance in the second-half, Aston Villa did threaten on the counter. A shot from Afoka in the 85th minute looked like it had crept in, although it was just in the side netting.
Palace continued to search for a winner to come away with all three points, but it wasn’t to be as the referee blew the full-time whistle after four minutes of additional time.
Rob Quinn’s young Eagles now sit within the top four of the Under 18 Premier League South, maintaining their unbeaten status.
Aston Villa: Wright, Rhoades, Munroe (T. O’Reilly 58), A. O’Reilly (Hart 12), Softley, Alcock, Burchall (Moore 65), McBride, Sewell, Pierre, Afoka.
Subs not used: Lutz, Lewis.
Palace: Goodman, Barton, Adaramola, Rodney, Jobson, Cadogan, Sheridan, Ozoh, Akinwale, Raymond (Ola-Adebomi 63), Mooney (Nascimento 89).
Subs not used: Lewis-Brown, Izquierdo, Ling.