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Corinthian-Casuals 2
Goal (5', 50')
4 Kingstonian
Gould (16'), Bean (37'), Haigh (60'), Jomaa (78')

Corinthian-Casuals Under 18s Report

I'm completely confused as to what's going on with the Combined Counties League youth section - even as I write this, I notice on the FA Full-Time system that we have been awarded two victories over Ashford Town (Middlesex) and that all matches involving Bedfont have been expunged. It also has the wrong result (and venue) for this particular game at the time of writing but hey-ho. So, as a result of this game, Kingstonian moved to within two points of Colliers Wood United (West) and have two games in hand. I think.

And, as at the time of writing, I think we have six games remaining, and none of them currently scheduled... We're also in a League Cup quarter-final away to Colliers Wood United (West), date to be arranged; plus a Grant McLellan Cup semi-final against one of Colliers Wood United (East), Windsor or Corinthian-Casuals - the quarter-final between the first two clubs listed is next Thursday. It feels bonkers, but c'est la vie.

Anyway, finally to this game, which was entertaining from start to finish in terrible monsoon conditions on a grass pitch at King George's Field that performed as brilliantly as the two teams.

The action began early in the piece as K's began quickly and made the first big chance when a Marco Haigh shot was well saved, but the rebound fell nicely to Lewis Gould, but his shot was brilliantly saved by the recovering Corinthian-Casuals goalkeeper. The home team rewarded their keeper for his bravery by going up the other end and laying siege on the Kingstonian goal, getting their just desserts in the fifth minute when K's, who had already scrambled three corners behind in quick succession, couldn't deal with a fourth, the ball was squared to the edge of the six yard box with a Cor-Cas forward slamming the ball home.

K's were back on level terms in the 16th minute when Marco Haigh's short pass found Lewis Gould inside the penalty area, one touch, boom, back of the net, goalkeeper no chance. Kingstonian was now getting into their stride and were deserving of the lead when they took it in the 37th minute when Pacey Bean headed home Iker Noguera Leon's corner from the left.

After the early setback, K's were the better team in the first half and were worthy leaders at the break. The second half, however, was a back-and-forth slugfest in ever worsening conditions and heavier rain. Despite the conditions, the will to win every challenge from both teams made for a hugely entertaining second half.

Corinthian-Casuals were back on level terms in the 50th minute, the ball was launched into the penalty area but only half cleared by the Kingstonian defence. Possession was seized by Kojo Boakye on the edge of the area with his back to goal, he turned on a sixpence (you can wiki that if you're not of a certain age...) and lashed a first time shot past Connor Wolfheimer for a fine equaliser.

The visitors were back in front in the 60th minute; possession was stolen just inside the Corinthian-Casuals half, the ball was slipped to Iker Noguera Leon, whose short pass to Marco Haigh split the defence, Marco's first time shot made no mistake.

The tension rose inside King George's Field as the play went up a gear as the pitch got softer and the rain incredibly got harder, it seemed unlikely that there would be no further scoring and there was no clue as to who would score it. Both teams were pressing for goals, the conditions could have produced a calamitous error (but somehow never did), and the result was completely in doubt.

The clincher came in the 78th minute and it went Kingstonian's way, and it was against the run of play of the previous few minutes that saw the home team press for an equaliser. After withstanding much pressure from Corinthian-Casuals, the ball found Lewis Gould down the left inside the penalty area, near the byline he drove a low cross that was turned in at the far post by Fourat Jomaa, who scored his team-leading 12th CCL goal of the season.

Six minute of added time only just saw the game not become a water polo match and the final whistle went giving the K's a really hard-fought victory.

We could get used to playing Corinthian-Casuals at King George's Field in the next few weeks - visit number two is on Monday 1st May for a Surrey U18s Midweek Cup Semi-Final, and we could meet them in away ties in both the Grant McLellan Cup and CCL Youth League Cup should other results confirm this. May is going to be action packed.

Published Friday 28th April 2023