U16 Rep Team edged out by Essex

Middlesex 1-4 Essex

English Schools' FA Inter-County Trophy, 5th November 2016

Middlesex bowed out of the English Schools’ FA’s national competition, although the eventual score line did not reflect a close and exciting game against a strong Essex team. Middlesex started brightly and had the upper hand in the early exchanges. The four players making their debut in the starting line-up – Sokol Rexhaj, Keith Taziwa, Tashae Gibbons and Isaiah  Carrington -  all settled in quickly and Middlesex’s superior passing was rewarded after 10 minutes when skipper Guerin Nimi burst through the Essex defense making a neat pass to set up striker James Bromley-Price to blast the ball home.

Essex fought hard to get the equalizer and after 20 minutes breached the Middlesex defense only for Middlesex Man of the Match Rexhaj to make a superb tackle to deny them.

The home side had largely controlled possession but against the run of play Essex scored directly from a corner with the wind being a factor and the first half ended with the score level at 1-1.

The second half started at a high tempo with both teams pushing for the vital second goal. Carrington was causing the visitors problems, particularly combining with Taziwa down the left while Morgan Whittick and Cai Burrows linked up well when attacking down the right . David Oppong-Wiafe forged a solid  partnership with Rexhaj at the heart of the Middlesex defense.      

Midway through the second half, Ali Alanezi burst through but was pulled down just outside the box and Middlesex could not convert the free kick.

The hosts made changes, giving Emre Top his debut. Top’s speed and dribbling made an impact but although Middlesex had the upper hand for large periods could not get the all-important goal.

Charlie Quinnell was brought on in midfield as Middlesex piled on the pressure but with 5 minutes to go and extra time looming Essex counter attacked and broke the deadlock to go ahead.

It was a bitter blow for Middlesex who had dominated the game in large spells and  they charged forward looking for the equalizer. With 2 minutes remaining the Essex keeper  made a superb save diving at full length to tip the ball over the bar and deny Middlesex an equalizer. Middlesex continued to attack but Essex capitalized and scored two late goals to secure a 4-1 win.

Middlesex coach Chris Ampofo commented: “This is a talented group of players with a great team spirit. They work hard for each other and can all be proud of their contribution today. A few more shots on goal will make a difference. Results will come. Good luck to Essex in the next round.”

Middlesex face Sussex away next on Saturday 12 November and then Hampshire at home at Brunel University on 19 November.

Squad: Ali Alanezi (London Academy), Ben Sullivan (Harefield), Cai Burrows (St Gregory’s), Charlie Quinnell (Douay Martyrs), David Oppong-Wiafe (Greenford), Emre Top, (Oasis Academy), Guerin Nimi (Gunnersbury), Isaiah Carrington (Queensmead), James Bromley-Price (Bishop Ramsey), Josh Beirne (Rivers Academy), Joe Ringer (Harefield), Keith Taziwa (Lampton), Michael O’Neil (Bishopshalt), Morgan Whittick (St James’), Sokol Rexhaj (Aylward Academy), Tashae Gibbons (Hounslow).

U18 Inter-School League semi-finals

Following the conclusion of the Under-18 Leagues match-playing window, the top two schools in each of the 1st XI League divisions, and the top four schools in the single-division 2nd XI League, have advanced to the play-offs to determine the championships.

The semi-final draws are as follows

1st XI League

Alec Reed Academy v Finchley Catholic High School
Ashmole Academy v Greig City Academy

2nd XI League

Enfield Grammar School v Christ's College Finchley
Ashmole Academy v Finchley Catholic High School

Matches are due to be played by the Easter Holiday, although an extension to enable the ties to be played early next term can be agreed with the Competition Secretary, Mr Walsh.

U15 Rep. Team draw with Sussex

Middlesex 0-0 Surrey

South-East England Schools' FA, London Cup Group 1

The Middlesex County FA Chief Executive Peter Clayton was in the crowd along with several professional scouts to watch impressive Middlesex put on another terrific performance but they were held by Sussex in this exciting all action SEESFA London Cup Group 1 match.

Staged on the superb 3G pitch at Capital City Academy, the match was played at a high tempo straight from the kick off. Sussex enjoyed the upper hand in the early exchanges. Middlesex made changes after the half hour, bringing on James Bromley to add more fire power in attack. The switch nearly paid dividends when Bromley side-stepped his marker and fired just wide.  The visitors’ defence was unsettled by Bromley and shortly after Cai Burrows shot just wide with a clever placed shot.

The second half was more of the same, with Middlesex pinning Sussex in their half and Sussex counter-attacking. Heroic defending by Michael Adjei, Sateesh Selvaradjou, Ruudy Kahunga and David Oppong Wiafe kept the visitors at bay. At the other end, Man of the Match Bromley caused havoc and was a constant threat, combining well with Wiktor Wachala to release Jaevon Braithwaite. Braithwaite coolly broke into the box then unleashed a fierce shot which was well saved by the Sussex keeper. It was now all Middlesex. Kyle Mathews, Burrows and Braithwaite began to dominate in midfield. Sussex parked the bus but it looked as though it would only be a matter of time before Middlesex scored. In the last minute, Selvaradjou broke from defense driving through midfield before unleashing a thirty five yard drive that flew agonisingly just over the bar. This was the final effort and the game finished with the unlikely score of nil-nil. Middlesex coach Chris Ampofo said afterwards: “What a game. The team was fantastic today. They worked their socks off. I’m very proud of them”.

Middlesex remain two points ahead of Sussex in the group table.  Sussex faces Inner London on March 12th and must win If they are to qualify for the semi-final. A Sussex loss or a draw will see Middlesex proceed to the semi-final, where they would play away to Hertfordshire. Sussex may be hot favorites but Inner London have nothing to lose so could cause an upset.

Middlesex: James Bromley (Bishop Ramsey), Wiktor Wachala (Ark academy), Toby Gould (Harrow), Dawid Chiomanowicz (Alec Reed), Joe Ringer (Harefield), Sateesh Selvaradjou (Preston Manor),  David Oppong Wiafe (Greenford),  Ruudy Kahunga ( Finchley),  Charlie Quinnell (Douay Martyrs),  Ali Alanezi – (London Academy),   Cai Burrows Capt, Michael Adjei, (St Gregorys), Olumide Akinode, Kyle Mathews (Wembley High), Keiano Joseph, Jaevon Braithwaite (Claremont).