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Kingstonian 3
Gould (9', 20'), Bean (37')
1 Chipstead
N'Guessan (59')

Chipstead U18s match report

Kingstonian won the Isthmian Youth League Central Division for the third time in the club's history after winning their 16th game out of 18 matches with a fairly comfortable 3-1 victory over Chipstead.

In driving rain at South Park FC, K's began the game with none of the pressure showing that ought to show when so close to winning a league title, and carved out a chance as early as the second minute when Beau Walters flighted a fine cross from the left wing to Lewis Gould, whose first time touch went over the bar. The tall Kingstonian number nine would not have to wait too long, however.

Kingstonian took the lead in the ninth minute with a swift counter attack that started when Niklas Manthey stopped a Chipstead attack, with the ball being moved quickly forwards to Lewis Gould, who controlled beautifully and lobbed the ball over the Chipstead goalkeeper and into the net.

K's had more joy in the 12th minute when Walters freed Pacey Bean down the left, his cross was met by a first time Gould shot that went straight at the keeper, but it was a fine start to such a vital match for a team needing a draw or a win to clinch the division.

It got even better for the home team in the 20th minute when the lead was doubled. Marco Haigh was the architect this time with a skilful run surrounded by defenders on the right side of the six yard box, once he created a micro-inch of space he centred the ball to an unmarked Lewis Gould, who tapped home.

K's were almost totally dominant in this first half as the main drama was restricted to people trying not to float out of the ground as the rain drove down faster than the national speed limit, though there were no puddles on South Park's new 3g pitch.

Goal number three for the K's came in the 37th minute, and again it came down the left wing and was started by Beau Walters, whose through ball freed Pacey Bean, he lived up to his name and sped goalwards, finishing a lightning move with a clinical shot. With rain still doing its thing, the half time whistle was blown and even the most cautious of spectator was beginning to have an inkling that the title might be won by the boys in the hoops.

The second half was a far quieter affair, Chipstead upped their game, Kingstonian relaxed a little, and eventually it was the Chips that would score the only goal after the break in the 59th minute, a corner wasn't dealt with by the Ks defence and the ball was prodded up at close range by Daniel N'Guessan.

As the rain actually began to stop, the game took on that end-of-season feeling, it was job done by the K's. Iker Noguera Leon nearly capped off the night in the final minute when played through by Adelino Sampaio, but his shot crashed against the bar. Soon afterwards, the final whistle went, three points for the K's and the championship was won.

And yet there is more to come. There is a Surrey Cup Semi-Final away to Corinthian-Casuals to play (date to be arranged), a Grant McLellan Cup Semi-Final to play (date and opponent to be arranged), a Combined Counties League Cup Quarter-Final at Colliers Wood United (West) to play (date to be arranged).

And now there is an Isthmian Youth League Champion of Champions Cup Semi-Final to play, a competition that we've never competed in before (it didn't exist the previous two occasions we won this division). This particular semi-final will take place on Tuesday 2nd May at South Park FC, against either Worthing or Three Bridges. Whoever the opponent will be, it should be a cracking game.

Next up is a Combined Counties League West Division game on Thursday night away to Corinthian-Casuals, kick-off at 7.45pm. The first team's season might be over, but the under 18s still have so much to play for, and by 'eck it's fun.

Published Tuesday 25th April 2023