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Maidenhead United u18s show their flair against Ware u18s to progress in FA Youth Cup

Neil Maskell

Maidenhead United u18s show their flair against Ware u18s to progress in FA Youth Cup

Ware u18s 1, Maidenhead United u18s 3

Maidenhead United u18s booked a trip to either Colchester United or Oxford United in the third round of the FA Youth Cup after overcoming a dogged Ware side 3-1 in their own lair.

The Maidenhead Academy side started slowly but soon warmed to their task with Reece Smith curling a free-kick against the crossbar in the 20th minute.

Borkovic then forced the Ware keeper into a save he did not know much about, such was the venom on the strike from the Magpies’ striker.

Ware again hit the ground running at the start of the second half, but, against the run of play the young Magpies took the lead when Borkovic’s cross from the right was diverted into his own net off a recovering Ware defender.

Bennett rose highest to draw the home side level a few minutes later, heading the ball into the back of the net from a well-constructed free-kick.

The Magpies management team made a crucial substitution in the closing stages, bringing off the hardworking Boniface for Croker, with Smith pushed out to the wing. It worked to great effect with five minutes remaining when Borkovic whipped in a cross from the left hand side and Smith, who had come into the box from his position on the wing, was on hand to tuck the ball home.

Then, in the last of four minutes added time, the Magpies confirmed their place in the next round when Gibson held off his defender to fire a shot at goal. Weaver made a good save but could only push the ball into the path of Smith who turned the ball home.

Maidenhead United FC U18’s Manager Christian Parker had this to say after the game: “What a game that was, at times during the second half the game was end to end and was like a proper cup tie which could have gone either way.

“We reach the Third Round proper of the competition for the second successive year which is something the boys should be proud of and it is their determination, effort and character in these games which has enabled us to equal the club record. We now look forward to an away game against a league club, which the lads should be looking forward to.

“We will give either of these professional clubs the respect they deserve but will go there with the confidence and belief we have shown in the competition this year hoping that we can cause an upset and create further history for the Youth team setup”.

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Ware FC: Weaver, Tree, Hares (Sub Abe), Hove, Gialo, Campbell, Reynolds (Sub Crowther), Bennett, Shepherd, Hicks, Weald (Sub Luck). Unused Subs: Deans, Gray, Meadows, Conboy.

Maidenhead United FC: Fred Chapman, Cole Gough, James Dirkin, Taropafadzwa Chitepo, Harrison Playle (c), Brandon Curtis, Tommy Boyd, Reece Smith, Jack Gibson, Marko Borkovic, Lewis Boniface (Sub Adam Crocker 74 mins). Unused Subs: Henry Pidgeon, Lucca Kershaw, Mo Bouzidi, Finlay Scott, Hosni Elarfa, Michael Croker.

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