Under 18's held by Little Oakley
By Chris Ward
Under 18's fail to find the target against Little Oakley - By Drew Kendall
Bury Town Under 18's played out a goalless draw with their Little Oakley counterparts on a night where the Blues will wonder how they didn't win. On the bright side though it brought the home side just their second clean sheet this season (first in the league, after the 5-0 home FA Youth Cup tie v Ipswich Wanderers).
Possession was practically dominated by Bury throughout the evening, but just couldn't find the breakthrough. It's fair to say the Blues tested the Oakley keeper more than they tested Connor Reynolds in the Bury goal. The first shot was also the first on target from Bury's Aiden Browne after 2 minutes. The Bury man's 20-yard low strike was deflected straight to the keeper. On 10 minutes Joshua Revell went for a great drive from 20-yards but shot straight at the keeper.
Two minutes later, Oakley were then given too much space, allowing them to get a 20-yard low strike at goal on the right, forcing Reynolds to dive down to his right and get a strong hand to palm the shot away. The Blues then won a free-kick on the right wing after 13 minutes. Revell's set-piece found Allison in the area whose shot was blocked, the Bury man then got the rebound on the right side in the box and crossed the ball into the box.
His ball in though hit a Oakley arm but the ref wasn't interested. Will Allison then had a go at goal from 20-yards on 18 minutes, but struck wide of the right post. The hosts then won a corner on the left after 22 minutes, Ethan Heap leaping the highest to head the ball on but wide of the far post. The visitors then won a free-kick twenty yards out on the left, which was curled over the wall but was palmed over his bar well by Reynolds on 25 minutes. Burg then tried their luck with a low strike, a minute later, but shot just wide of the right post.
Then on 29 minutes, Tinde was fouled from 25-yards out on the right but curled it over the bar. The hosts then had another shot at goal, with Rothon's 30-yard curling strike going over the bar after 32 minutes. Seven minutes later, Bury hit an effort straight at the keeper before Oakley curled a free-kick over the top right corner on 40 minutes. Oakley then had the last chance of the half, No.3 shooting on the left but getting too much underneath it and shooting over the bar.
Half Time: Bury Town Under 18's 0-0 Little Oakley Under 18's
The second half began with John Tinde going for goal a minute after the break. The Blues' No.7 shooting from the right edge of the box but curling over the top right corner. Two minutes later, Oakley's No.2 then tried his luck from 20-yards out on the right and shot towards the top far corner, with Reynolds able to catch. Browne then went on a long run downfield for the hosts on 49 minutes, and got through to the left edge of the box. The Bury man curled a good shot towards the bottom far corner but was caught by the diving keeper. On 54 minutes Bury crossed the ball in on the right but was headed out to Heap in the middle but saw his shot blocked.
Oakley then shot at goal from just outside the box but saw the attempt blocked on 57 minutes, before the visitors then got through to the right byline and squared the ball dangerously across goal with nobody able to take advantage.
Joshua Revell then got through to the left side in the box and cut into the middle but saw his shot blocked on 59 minutes. That was followed by the Blues having a shot blocked on the edge of the box.
The hosts then forced the keeper to save down to his left, before shooting wide of the right post from close range. On 64 minutes, Bury skipper Revell went for goal from 25-yards on the right, but saw his strike towards the top far corner caught by the keeper. Two minutes later, Oakley swung a free-kick into the box as No.12 headed it on but was gathered by Reynolds. With 22 minutes to go, Ethan Heap went for goal but shot comfortably wide of the left post, as Bury continued to press for a late goal. Oakley then found a man through down the middle, but scuffed the shot off target- with Reynolds gathering the loose ball on 71 minutes. The visitors then got space to shoot from distance on the left a minute later, but shot just wide of the right post.
Tinde then missed a fantastic shot to open the scoring on 74 minutes, as the Blues man was set through on goal on the right side in the box as the keeper came off his line to close him down. However, Tinde's shot went agonisingly just wide of the unguarded bottom far corner. Bury kept pushing for the winning goal though soon after, as the Blues forced the keeper to put a great strike behind his right post for a corner. With 15 minutes remaining, the resulting corner was headed at goal at the near post but was straight at the keeper.
After 78 minutes Rothon then shot at goal from the right edge of the box but had his shot blocked, with Bury still dominating the ball. The away side then had a shot at goal from the left edge of the box on 80 minutes, but shot low and straight at Reynolds. The Blues then flashed an effort on the right past the far post a minute later.
Oakley then set a teammate through on the right side in the box, on 86 minutes but saw his shot blocked by Heap. The final chance then saw Oatkey win a free-kick 25-yards out on the right, three minutes into added time, but was hit over the top far corner.
Full Time: Bury Town Under 18's 0-0 Little Oakley Under 18's
1. Connor Reynolds
2. Ethan Heap
3. Tyler Matthews
4. Aiden Browne
5. Joe Gunn
6. Hari Jolland
7. John Tinde
17. Joshua Revell
9. Taylor Rothon
10. Chester Rudnicki
11. Will Allison
12. Adam Newton
14. Charlie Cook
Match report by Drew Kendall