By Jayden Oni
Hampton’s U14Cs travelled to Walthamstow to play Forest School’s U14Bs.
At first a tougher opponent did not phase Hampton, with the U14Cs picking up many corners from half-chances that were created and then dealt with by the Forest defence.
However, as the minutes went by, Forest adjusted to Hampton’s playing style. They had several dangerous counter-attacks resulting from Hampton’s high defensive line from their corner kicks.
One of these counter-attacks was particularly menacing, forcing goalkeeper, Joseph Gordon, to rush swiftly off his line. After this, the ball was quickly cleared, albeit straight back into danger. The ball was now at the feet of a Forest player, and with Gordon still off his line the player chipped the ball into the Hampton net.
The whistle blew for half-time and even though Hampton were creating more chances and were more dominant in possession, they had to recollect and rethink their game plan if they were to draw or even prevail against a strong Forest side.
The second half saw a much better performance from Hampton, with their defence no longer sitting high for corners and their attack a lot more lively. However, it would not be until late into the second half that Noel Yonas equalised for Hampton.
Yonas, in fine form for Hampton, capitalised on a through ball played by Henry Fry, which let Yonas past the Forest defence, finishing coolly past the ‘keeper.
Yonas also had a second chance soon after, similar to the goal that he clinically finished, yet this time it was not to be for the Hampton midfielder.
With 5 minutes to go, the momentum was with Hampton and they were still striving to get a second goal to seal the win. The last chance for Hampton came when Hampton winger Henry Jackson put a picture-perfect cross into the box.
Despite the fact that no one was close enough to the cross to take advantage of it, it bizarrely ended up hitting the post. Jayden Oni was quick to get the rebound, though unfortunately the goalkeeper was close enough to block Oni’s shot from hitting the back of the net.
The full-time whistle blew and the score remained 1-1. With Hampton being the far more dominant team in the second half, there was no doubt that a draw was a frustrating result, yet a well played one.