The Under 19’s maintained their 100% home record with a win over second placed Ely Rangers. All the goals came in an entertaining first half, mainly thanks to the Ely Rangers keeper there was no addition to the score after the break. Jack Hurley made a welcome return while Sean Hanbury had a runout up front with Jack Todd out ill.
Ely Rangers made the early running and Aaron Jones was quickly called into action to twice make important clearances outside the area as the speedy Ely forwards caused problems. After 10 minutes we cleared an Ely attack and Jack Hurley found Sean Hanbury down the right. He cut in and shot from outside the box, the Ely keeper saved it but fumbled it and the ball went out for a Lido corner. Ely should have taken the lead on 12 minutes when they attacked down the right crossed the ball in but from 10 yards their player shot over the bar when he should at least have hit the target. Lido responded with an excellent move involving several players before the keeper made a fine save diving to his right. Again, the Ely keeper prevented us from taking the lead with another fine save. Back came Ely and a cross wasn’t dealt with at the back and Aaron Jones made a great save from a powerful from no more than 8 yards. Finally, on 26 minutes we took the lead, Jack Hurley received the ball in the penalty area, beat a player and hit an unstoppable shot from 10 yards. We led for only 3 minutes, Ely attacked down the right and the ball was crossed low into the box with an Ely player arriving late to drill the ball into the net from 12 yards. On 36 minutes we had a chance to retake the lead but put a free header wide then on 41 minutes we got the goal. Following a throw on the left Sean Hanbury hit a powerful shot across the keeper and into the far corner. Two minutes later it was 3-1 and after all his good work this one was down to a mistake by the keeper. We attacked down the right and he came out to the edge of the area to close us down leaving the goal unattended. The ball was crossed to Azeem Arshad who fired it in to give us some breathing space. There was still time for the Ely keeper to again make a fine diving save turning the ball behind for a corner which was played across the area with no-one getting a touch.
In a repeat of the start of the first half Ely attacked and Aaron Jones was forced to clear. His long ball forward saw the Ely keeper race out of his area to clear with a couple of Lido players closing in on him. We forced a couple of corners which came to nothing then on 67 minutes a Sean Hanbury shot took a deflection and once again the Ely keeper dived to his right to make the save. Ely pushed forward and started to again look dangerous with one shot hitting the top of the bar but they lacked the speed and intensity of their first half performance. On 80 minutes they almost had a way back into the game, a 35 yard free kick bounced in front of Aaron Jones who couldn’t hold it but they couldn’t take advantage of it and we cleared the ball. Azeem Arshad should have made it four with five minutes to go when he latched on to a great through ball but the keeper dashed out and closed him down and he wasn’t able to get the ball past the keeper. In the closing stages Aaron Jones made a comfortable save from a long range shot before Ely had a player sent off right on time for a bad challenge out on the touchline.
An important win against on times an impressive Ely Rangers side to put us 9 points ahead with games in hand.
Lido side – Aaron Jones – 2 Jamie Austin – 3 Matthew Andrews – 4 Evan Daley – 5 Luke Evans –
6 Taylor Evans – 7 Jake Simeone – 8 Jack Hurley – 9 Sean Hanbury – 10 Charlie Hamer –
11 Azeem Arshad
Subs – 12 Jamie Karnsang for Taylor Evans 78 – 14 Hakeem Al-Hadi for Charlie Hamer 78 –
15 Jordan Downs – 16 Lewis Clement for Sean Hanbury 90 +2 – 17 Kieran Burridge
Goals Jack Hurley 26, Sean Hanbury 41 and Azeem Arshad 43