Tuesday September 1st                     FA YOUTH CUP – Preliminary Round   

LYMINGTON TOWN U18  0 (0)  v  4 (4)  COWES SPORTS U18 

played at Lymington Sports Ground                                                   Kick off – 8pm 

Referee:- JUSTYN LEONARD                    Assistants – Liam Hatch + Fern Holleyoak


Subs – Edward HUMPHRIES (60), Max HARPER (67), Szymon SADEL (70), unused William FOULSHAM

For the first time in the history of Cowes Sports FC the club entered an Under 18 side into the FA YOUTH Cup competition. The newly formed U18 side, made up of players from many clubs around the Island, is being Managed by Jacob Toms with help from coaches Glenn Annett and Nicholas Johnson. The draw for the Preliminary round of the competition had pitted the Island side away at Lymington Town. This match was also the first competitive game for the side as their League programme in the Hampshire Combination & Development League U18 was not due to start until September 5th when they again are on their travels , this time to Horndean.

Neither team knew much about the other so it was hard to judge what to expect from the game. The young Yachtsmen started the game on the front foot from the first whistle and could have taken the lead in the very first minute when a long diagonal pass from centre half Thomas Ashley found left back Jamie Trowbridge in the home penalty area, he played the ball back to Kyle Kilroy who sent his shot over the bar. mark Robertson then had a goal-bound effort blocked a minute later. In the 5th minute the first chance for the home side after the ball was given away cheaply as their number 8 tried to lob keeper Owen Denness from 25 yards but the shot went wide of the Cowes goal. Cowes’ Finley Kalakar then tried his luck from distance but the Lymington keeper just managed to push the ball away for a corner. Early pressure paid off for the Yachtsmen as they took a deserved lead in the 9th minute when following some neat build up play JAMIE TROWBRIDGE was on hand ten yards out to smash the ball into the net much to the delight of the visitors. Just two minutes later and further joy for the Island side as they doubled their advantage as MARK ROBERTSON saw his first shot blocked by a defender but he made no mistake with the second effort leaving the home side in shock. A 13th minute free kick from the home side sailed harmlessly over the crossbar. Finley Kalakar then set up Daniel Johnson but the winger volleyed his effort wide of goal when it was expected to see the net bulge. Mark Robertson was then put through on goal but the home keeper done really well to block before the danger was cleared. Cowes by this point were threatening a cricket score as they were totally dominating the game. On 23 minutes a Thomas Ashley free kick from just inside his own half picked out the head of Cory Sanderson but the Cowes skipper sent his header the wrong post of the right post. Lymington’s number 8 was the only home player to threaten the Cowes back line but on 25 minute sent a shot from distance well wide. Cory Sanderson then battled well in midfield to win the ball before shooting over the bar from distance. Left back JAMES TROWBRIDGE was enjoying the freedom on the left and on 40 minute met a Daniel Johnson cross to score his second and Cowes’ third goal of the game. From the re-start FINLEY LLOYD broke through on goal and added a fourth goal for the young Yachtsmen, although whilst texting updates back to the Island I actually missed this goal and had not realised until early in the second half that the lads had scored a fourth goal. On the stroke of half time a brilliant Mark Robertson shot was blocked by the home keeper before being cleared. Lymington’s winger then saw a shot fly over the bar as Cowes went in at the break four goals to the good and looking very comfortable. H-t 0 – 4 

The second half began as the first finished with the visitors pushing forward. A 48th minute free kick from Jamie Trowbridge to Mark Robertson who got to the bye line before crossing to the far post where the ball was headed back across the face of the goal but no Cowes player was able to get a touch and the ball drifted wide. Having played a full 90 minutes the previous evening for the 1st XI, Thomas Ashley was replaced on the hour mark by Edward Humphries. On 67 minutes Kyle Kilroy came of to be replaced by Max Harper. Finley Lloyd then tried his luck from the edge of the box in the 69th minute but only succeeded in hitting a couple of cars that were parked to the left of the Lymington goal. Poor home defending then gave Daniel Johnson the chance to add a fifth goal but his volley flew across and wider of the target. Desperate to complete his hat trick Jamie Trowbridge met a superb Teddy Mumford cross from the right with a volley that flew over the crossbar in the 75th minute. Lymington briefly threatened to score as their number 9 won the ball off Rowen Churchill and sent the ball across the six yard line where his team mate looked likely to score but a fantastic tackle from Teddy Mumford prevented a consolation goal for Lymington. With the outcome of the game secure Cowes slowed the pace of the game down and controlled the game with ease. Skipper Cory Sanderson had the final chance of the game five minutes from time and sent in a low fizzing shot the the home keeper done really well to hold on to with substitute Max Harper ready to pounce on any rebound.

So a first adventure into the FA Youth cup finished in triumph for Jacob Toms’ youngsters in a very commanding performance, though it is expected that they will face much sterner tests in the weeks to come, none more so than in the next round where they will face Winchester City U18’s at Westwood Park in the week commencing September 13th.