Worthing under 18s frustrated in FA Youth Cup

Football
Football

Cray Wanderers frustrated Worthing U18s on Thursday, beating them 2-1 to knock them out of the FA Youth Cup.

A first-half strike from Josh Gould put the Reds ahead, but two quick goals after the break from the Wands proved too much for them to overcome.

The Mackerel Men got off to an encouraging start, Ricky Aguiar laying off for Tyrese Mthunzi to shoot just wide at the two minute mark.

As the front line pressed hard in the early stages, Mthunzi in particular had a strong start, flying into challenges and distributing the ball around midfield.

Despite a smattering of Cray chances, it was the Reds who came closest in the early period - both times through Aguiar.

In the 13th minute, Darius Goldsmith capitalised on a great through ball and crossed to the former Bognor man, but his lashing drive was beaten away at the far post by Tiwalade Fujimade.

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Seven minutes later, Aguiar fired a volley goalwards, but again Fujimade cushioned it to safety.

While a commanding defence led by captain Callum Litterick kept Cray at bay, the Worthing front line’s prayers were answered on 38 minutes.

Aguiar’s powerful free kick proved too hot to handle for Fujimade, who could only palm the ball into the air before Josh Gould crashed it into the net.

Things quietened down for the rest of the first half, bar a close call when Cray’s Spencer shot past Aaron Relf, the ball whistling past the far post.

Cray’s response came shortly after half-time, Ronnie Payne tapping home a close-range cross after eight minutes.

The Reds' lack of chance-taking proved costly as the Wands put themselves in the lead in the 59th minute thanks to Leroy Lewis, who slotted home inside the box.

After the early goal rush, the game settled again as the half went on, with neither side having many clear-cut chances.

The Reds remained spirited after going down, but were found wanting when it came to the final ball.