• Ryan Sheehan

#CityU23s | Young Citizens win against neighbours Woodley

Reading City U23s returned to action after an unbeaten November on Saturday 7th December. It was sixth week lucky as they played away to Woodley United Royals and came back in style with a dominating performance.

It was a quick start from Reading City despite not playing for five weeks. Jordi Wilson started a counter-attack with a good throw out to Jude Van Spall who was able to run onto the ball, he then switched play to Jehmeil McNeil who dribbled towards goal but put his shot wide of the near post.

However, Woodley had a good chance soon after from a free-kick when one of their players was allowed a shot after the ball came in but was denied a goal by a great save from Jordi Wilson, the Woodley number nine was first to the rebound but failed to hit the target.

Then City went up the other end to open the scoring. Kris Tuffoul had the ball on the left side and cut a pass back to Bub Touray who played a superb cross into the box for Jehmeil McNeil who won the aerial battle and headed the ball over the goalkeeper to give the visitors the lead, Woodley United Royals 0-1 Reading City U23s.

Tuffoul had a couple of long shots in the first half which went close including one in the twentieth minute which forced a save out of the goalkeeper as the ball was heading for the bottom left corner.

Reading City grabbed their second just before the half-hour mark as Tuffoul played through Harry Peters on the right side who dribbled in and converted his shot to double City’s lead, Woodley United Royals 0-2 Reading City U23s.

The third goal came right after the second. The third came from an incredible through ball from Tuffoul to Van Spall which put the latter in a one on one with the goalkeeper, and he remained composed to slot the ball past the keeper and into the goal, Woodley United Royals 0-3 Reading City U23s.

McNeil had two good chances towards the end of the second half. The first went just wide of the far post from the right side of the box and then the second was even closer after a direct pass from Bridgewater as the shot went millimetres past the post.

It was a dominating first half from City, and they should have been leading by more, Woodley United Royals lacked any chances after their early attempt which was well saved by Wilson.

City’s control continued into the second half. Peters whipped in a great cross from a corner for Kris Tuffoul, but the goalkeeper easily saved his header. Almost right after there was another excellent example of Wilson’s great distribution skills as he played the ball out right for Peters who was away down the right, he then cut the ball back to Kris Tuffoul whose shot was pushed over the bar by a good save.

City’s best chance of the second half came in the sixty-seventh minute, Tuffoul passed it out left for Van Spall who hit a shot across goal but was denied by the woodwork, Peters overran his run as the ball bounced back out and was cleared.

Two minutes later Peters played a great cross into the box from a free-kick towards City’s centre-backs Nathan Mindomba and Denis Haxhiu, the cross just needed a small touch to direct it away from the goalkeeper and in but neither managed it, and the goalkeeper collected the ball comfortably.

City were unable to find a goal in the second half despite some good chances but performed well. Ryan Corbett and Liam Parry had their debuts for the Citizens during the game, and both performed well, Corbett played some great passes and won back possession plenty of times from his defensive midfield role. Liam Parry came off the bench and played well at right-back for his first thirty minutes in a Reading City shirt.

It was a comfortable 3-0 victory for the Citizens and was great to see after they didn’t have a game for five weeks. The next match for City U23s is in the ‘Reading Invitation Challenge Cup Junior’ at Rivers against Harchester Hawks.

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