|Date||Thursday 6 September 2012|
|Match||Hatfield Town v Royston Town|
|Competition||FA Youth Cup: Preliminary Round|
|Royston Scorers||Steele, Brennan, Hall(2), Turner|
Hatfield Town welcomed Royston Town's Under 18's to the Gosling Stadium to compete in the FA Youth Cup, a national competition which all the young Crows thrive on.
Royston started brightly but you could tell nerves were there despite the initial excitement before the game. Crows welcomed captain Matt Brennan into central defence with Callam Turner moving up front in the only changes from last week's positive outing at Deeping.
Despite a shaky opening 15 minutes the Crows maintained possession and worked hard throughout, midway through the half Jordan Hall fired a free kick over the bar before Jamie Steele showed him how to do it on the 38th minute and a when low drilled shot whistled past the helpless keeper.
The Crows kept up the pressure and two minutes later a short corner saw Dejon Mullings whipped-in cross elude everyone for Brennan to open his account for the season. Harry Geir and Ed Brown continued to work hard throughout the half and made it very difficult for Hatfield to play much football, Hatfield did however have a chance in late on when Royston had keeper Harry Reynolds to thanks after he made a smart save low to his right.
Royston came out in the second half determined to get the job done and set off on the attack straight away. Hall scored a brace within two minute after some neat interchange with Brown saw him smash his first and then scramble the other.
The job wasn’t done and Royston played some smart football all round and defensively kept Hatfield at bay with Luke Shilton, Brennan, Jack Staley and Antony Araba deserving their clean sheet. Turner's work rate was finally rewarded with a goal when Mullings' cross saw him calmly score for his first for the season.
Mullings had a great chance to score when an 18 yard volley hit the cross bar and bounced out. Full back Araba also had a chance to score as his long run saw his shot fire into the side netting.
Manager Jorden Gibson commented after the game “We played some really good stuff and I can only see us getting better, we are still not fully moulded but already our work ethic for each other cannot be faulted, we are going to be a tough side to break down this year and that’ll be an important factor, our final third play was very good to watch and after working on our shape defensively this week we looked a lot stronger.”
Team: Reynolds, Shilton, Brennan(c), Staley, Araba, Steele, Brown, Geir, Hall, Turner, Mullings.
Subs: Booth, Wheeler, O’Mahony, Jackson, Burr