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U18s bow out of FA Youth Cup

7 December 2015

The Under-18s bowed out of the FA Youth Cup at the third round stage after a 3-0 defeat to Wolves.

Mike Dove’s side were more than a match for their opponents at Molineux, going close on a number of occasions in the first half.

However, two quick-fire goals at the start of the second period from Nico Carnat and a Niall Ennis strike in stoppage-time saw the young Dons exit the competition.

Director of Youth Dove opted for a 3-4-1-2 formation in his side’s first FA Youth Cup fixture of the season, a line-up which included six second-year scholars and five first-years.

The young Dons made a positive start but it was their hosts who threatened goal first through Daniel Armstong, who forced a save out of Andrew McCorkell with his left-footed effort on eight minutes.

From McCorkell’s ball out, Andrew Osei-Bonsu collected the ball in midfield and after spotting the Wolves keeper off his line he attempted an ambitious lob which landed just off target.

Dove’s side went even closer just 60 seconds later when Callum Brittain picked out Sam Nombe with a low cross - the striker, with his back to goal, used his heel to get a shot away but it was brilliantly denied by Wolves’ Rhys Bills.

On 16 minutes, Nombe again forced Bills into a stop - this time with a powerful right-footed shot - as the Dons ramped up the pressure on their opponents.

They did, though, have McCorkell to thank for keeping the scores level moments later when, on Wolves’ first real attack for 10 minutes, he spread himself wide to deny Bright Enobakhare from close range.

Midway through the second half, Connor Ronan had McCorkell at full stretch with rasping effort from distance - the Dons stopper didn’t get a touch to the shot but, fortunately, it sailed over his crossbar.

McCorkell had to be alert once again to save Armstrong’s low free-kick on 26 minutes. His parry did fall kindly for Wolves striker Enobakhare but his rebound trickled wide of the right upright, with McCorkell stranded.

Dove’s side were soon able to weather the brief storm and after a quickly-taken free-kick they almost opened the scoring through Brittain but his stinging effort from the corner of the box was dealt with by Bills at his near post.

Furlong earned the Dons that set-piece and the attacking midfielder, who was causing all sorts of problems for the Wolves defence, set up Nombe for a great chance to open the scoring before half-time, however, the striker couldn’t keep his strike down.

It would have been an ideal time for Dove’s side to score, not least because it came after Wolves were denied four times in quick succession by a combination of good defending by Jackson and strong goalkeeping from McCorkell.

.0-1Those bits of defending ensured both sides went into the interval all-square but within a minute of the re-start, Wolves broke the deadlock thanks to Carnat, who drifted in at the far post and found the net with a header.

.0-2Five minutes later Carnat was prevented with an opportunity to double his and his side’s tally and the winger took his chance, converting from close-range after being teed up by Enobakhare.

The quick-fire goals were harsh on the Dons, who had played their part in an equally contested first period.

They almost found an instant response, though, when Furlong poked a ball through for Brandon Thomas-Asante but he was denied by some good defending from Brandon Ball. Thomas-Asante then tried again on the hour-mark with an ambitious 40-yard lob which had to be tipped over the crossbar by Bills.

Dove’s boys were far from out of the contest and they again went close to pulling a goal back on 66 minutes when, after some fantastic football down the left, Jackson found himself free in the box but his low shot was taken by Bills.

The Dons failed to really build on those efforts, however, with Brittain’s 18-yard effort off target the closest they came to getting on the scoresheet late on.

Wolves, though, were able to add to their score stoppage time when Ennis fired into the top right-hand corner with the last kick of the game.

McCorkell; Hunt, Jackson, Steele; Brittain, Osei-Bonsu (Omar 76), Hadden-Becker, Kioso; Furlong; Thomas-Asante (Owusu 84), Nombe.Starting XI:

Wyant, Stratton, Logan.Unused subs:



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