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Plymouth U18s 4-4 Swindon Town U18s

Town's U18s narrowly miss out on Youth Alliance League title following last-minute equaliser from the Pilgrims

26 February 2024

Academy News

Plymouth U18s 4-4 Swindon Town U18s

Town's U18s narrowly miss out on Youth Alliance League title following last-minute equaliser from the Pilgrims

26 February 2024

Swindon Town U18s narrowly missed out on the Youth Alliance League title in the final game last weekend, after a thrilling 4-4 away draw with eventual winners Plymouth Argyle.

Forward Botan Ameen opened the scoring to give Town a first-half lead before the home side equalised just two minutes later.

George Alston and Josh Keyes found the net before half-time to restore Swindon's lead, before an unfortunate second-half comeback from the Pilgrims, including a last-minute penalty, gave the home side the point they needed to unfortunately win the title.

It was a positive start for Swindon, but after captain Redman Evans did well to deny a deflected effort which eventually hit the post for Plymouth, Town took the initiative and the lead 15 minutes in through the in-form Botan Ameen.

A lovely ball over the top fell to Botan Ameen and he showed his composure in front of the goal which allowed him to control the ball and dink his effort over the Plymouth keeper and give Swindon an early advantage that they were hoping for.

Two minutes later, Plymouth unfortunately found the equaliser through a close-range effort from Freddie Issaka.

Following a Lewis Colwell long-range effort which Redman Evans saved well, the Pilgrim youngster was unfortunately quickest to react and frustratingly converted the rebound to give the home side an immediate equaliser.

Plymouth began to find some momentum, and after a scare for Town seeing them hit the crossbar in the 24th minute, Swindon got their second goal as they looked to kick on and get the victory needed to pick up the title.

George Alston was the man to provide Town's second goal in the 32nd minute and after good work down the right-hand side from Joel McGregor, his cross was able to find Alston in the penalty area and allowed the winger to head home and put Town ahead in the title-decider once again.

Plymouth's Issaka looked for his second of the game from a direct free-kick which Redman Evans claimed well, before Josh Keyes doubled Town's lead in added time of the first half.

After being worked through down the right-hand side, Keyes advanced towards the Plymouth goal and showed great composure to face up against the onrushing home side's keeper, before slotting home and giving Swindon a two-goal advantage going into half-time.

Half-time: Plymouth Argyle U18s 1 Swindon Town U18s 3

Straight after the second half started, Keyes got his second of the game and Town's fourth goal to give them an extended lead having latched onto a loose defensive pass well.

Following this interception, Keyes drove forward again and slotted well past Plymouth's Dan Holman as Swindon looked to see out the victory to earn the Youth Alliance League title.

Plymouth frustratingly found their second of the game shortly after this, with Joel Sullivan finding the back of the Town net from range with a well-taken effort.

Argyle even more frustratingly found their third in the 61st minute, with Caleb Roberts converting from the penalty spot to make it an exciting final 30 minutes or so.

Despite seeing out relentless Plymouth pressure to ensure the victory, the home side would eventually find their equaliser with essentially the last kick of the game, with another penalty from Roberts tying things up.

This goal was a real sucker punch for Swindon, who will now look back on an impressive Youth Alliance League season which saw them finish second, having already qualified for the Merit League One and an exciting FA Youth Cup away tie to Bristol City coming up next month.


Plymouth Argyle U18s: Holman, Colwell (C), Sullivan, Matthews, Ireland, Gibbings, Issaka, Bernard, Finn, Roberts, Lord (Hatch 51)
Goals: Issaka 14, Sullivan 50, Roberts 61 (P), 90+4 (P) 
Subs not used: Haley, Dean, Flower

Swindon Town U18s: Evans (C), McGregor, Chard, Stewart, Hart, Hunt, Hubbard (Obodo 56), Brown, Ameen (Gonzalez 83), Keyes, Alston (Adams 88)
Goals: Ameen 15, Alston 32, Keyes 45+4, 49
Subs not used: Britchford-Stanley, Coles

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