Middlesex 3-1 Surrey
South-East England Schools' FA, London Cup Group 1
Middlesex blew the race for the semi-finals of the SEESFA London Cup wide open by winning 3-1 against previously unbeaten Surrey. This match was played in Middlesex, at Hampton School, albeit at a venue used regularly by Surrey Schools FA. The Seaxes came back from a goal down to record a superb victory in freezing cold conditions.
Surrey took the lead after 20 minutes but Middlesex bounced back just before the break, with all-action striker Ali Alanezi threading the ball to Cai Burrows who produced a moment of magic skilfully dribbling past two defenders before coolly dinking the ball of the keeper. The first half ended with the scores level at 1-1.
Middlesex started the second half at a high tempo. Captain Jaevon Braithwaite begin to get control in midfield with Charlie Quinnell sending probing passes as he tried to release debutant striker James Bromley who was constantly testing the Surrey defence.
Middlesex were rewarded for their relentless effort when Harrow winger Toby Gould reacted quickly to a loose ball, pressurising the Surrey keeper into an error and then placing the ball into the net. 2-1. It was “game on” and Surrey fought hard to get the equaliser. Keeper Joe Ringer made a superb save from point blank range then tipped the a header bound for the corner over the bar. Surrey kept up the pressure but the defence of Gareth Balakomoso, David Oppong-Wiafe, Michael Adjei and Ruudy Kahunga stood firm.
Wiktor Wachala was brought on to make his debut upfront along with Kyle Mathews and Olumide Akinade in midfield. All three made an instant impact. Mathews released Wachala down the right. He out-sprinted the full back and blasted a superb ball across the face of goal for Man of the Match Ali to volley home and make the score 3-1.
Middlesex coach Chris Ampofo observed: “ The effort and spirit in this team is fantastic. They worked really hard. Everyone contributed and they got the reward they deserved. It was an immense effort”
Middlesex: Wiktor Wachala (Ark academy), Toby Gould (Harrow), James Bromley (Bishop Ramsey) Dawid Chiomanowicz (Alec Reed), Joe Ringer (Harefield),Jaevon Braithwaite –Capt (Claremont) David Oppong Wiafe (Greenford), Ruudy Kahunga (Finchley), Charlie Quinnell (Douay Martyrs), Ali Alanezi (London Academy) Gareth Balakomoso, Cai Burrows, Michael Adjei, (St Gregorys), Olumide Akinade, Kyle Mathews (Wembley High).