A game of two halves at Wheatsheaf Park saw Hayes & Yeading United triumph over their local rivals and go through to the FA Youth Cup 1st Round Proper and a tie at Gillingham's Priestfield Stadium.
The first half was a rather uninspiring encounter spoilt by a blustery wind which neither side really came to terms with. Staines had the wind behind them and began the game with plenty of possession in the opposition territory, but they found Luke Daley and his defence in a stubborn mood. In fact, on the break, United almost struck the first blow as a sweeping move started by left back Andrew Dean flowing through midfield duo Jeffrey Kimoto and Max Hubbard and completed by a powerful run from Aristede Bassele ending with a powerful shot which just rose too high.
Staines finally got themselves into a decent position when Bryan Obonyo got to the left bye line and cut the ball back to Harry Rumsey but the forward shot well over from in front of goal. Obonyo was again involved moments later but his rising shot was caught well by Daley. Then in a mad three minute period, Bassele planted a header at the back post just wide when he really ought to have got it on target, but then play swept to the other end as Daley tipped Rumsey’s dipping shot over the bar and then dealt superbly with Obonyo’s long punt back into the box which landed just in front of his crossbar, the talented keeper (pictured left) pushing the ball over.
Just as it looked like the game was building to a crescendo, the conditions took over and very little else of note was created before half time, with just a routine catch for Daley, from Ben Laing’s long shot. United’s plans were disrupted soon afterwards however, as Hubbard sustained an injury and had to be replaced by Troy Timothy.
As cagey and frustrating as the first half was, the second half was exhilarating from start to finish. Just three minutes in, Timothy split the defence with a throughball and although Bassele had a tight angle to deal with, he drew keeper Charlie Hyam into leaving a gap at his near post with support from Aaron Harriott and Isaac Osei-Tutu and drove the ball in through that gap.
Timothy hit a superb volley from the corner of the area which flew just over but Staines came back with an even closer effort as Aaron Weston’s throw in was headed powerfully onto the bar by Dominic Ogun.
On 69 minutes, Bassele got his and United’s second and it was thanks mainly to Kimoto’s pinpoint throughball, although his cheeky clipped finish over the advancing Hyam was aesthetically pleasing.
Odaine Kemar-Smith’s header was held well by Daley following Charles Gerson’s long free kick but it was United who were to benefit from the next dead ball situation as Timothy’s near post corner was headed by an unmarked Bassele (pictured right) into the bottom of the net to complete a hat-trick.
Qaseen Sotonwa was the next Staines player to be thwarted by Daley, this time from another Weston long throw in as the keeper was able to hold onto his flicked header. However, United’s stopper was caught out on 81 minutes by a goal which, although clever, was quite controversial. It appeared that referee Mr Podsadny was in conversation with the United wall as it was being formed by Daley who had left his goal line to construct it. Gerson rolled the ball into the vacant net and United’s defence was left standing watching it roll in. Without hesitation, Mr Podsadny awarded the goal, leaving United’s defence rather bemused.
Two minutes later, it seemed to be hugely significant as Weston hit a superb volley past Daley on the run. Even then, Adam Butler had to clear off the line as another Weston long throw caused havoc right in front of goal. However, with time running out, Kimoto once again had a profound positive influence by finding Harriott in space and putting him through on goal and the forward (pictured left) finished the tie with a smart finish.
Report by Nick Bell.
Photos by Ron Gilbey.
United Man of the Match: Aristede Bassele.