Hampton 1 Moors Academy 5
Five-star display from young Moors - by Ronald Crane
Sam Manoochehri made a few changes for this game. Reiss McNally returned from injury, Dylan Barkers from a loan spell at Highgate, Rubyn Gill came in at number seven. Ryan Andrews, his spell at Boldmere St Michael over, started on the bench. Jerome Clarke and Michee Mbuti were unavailable and Jordan Clarke still injured.
Hampton undefeated in five matches had three Moors Academy old boys in their line up, and came into the game with high hopes.
The first half was quite an even affair, although Ethan Sephton did break the dead-lock with a thumping effort having received the ball from the right flank.
Moors may have been one goal to the good, but although Hampton found it hard to get into a clear attacking position, they more than held their own in midfield.
McNally, Barkers and company were a solid rock at the back for Moors. Assured on the ball, uncompromising in the tackle the back line of four held firm.
The home side could only manage a couple of attempts on target in the first 45 minutes. Hewitt was shown a yellow card for a fierce challenge on McNally.
Gill had a good effort saved, and Shuja Mahmood chipped the ‘keeper from 18 yards. Unfortunately the ball sailed over the bar. He had a much better chance when he beat the offside trap, but missed the target from 12 yards.
Within a minute of the re-start, Gill passed to Mahmood who doubled the Moors’ lead. Before the game could be re-started, there was a long lecture from referee Legg for Hampton Captain Mansell. Hampton did not give up by any means, and things could have been different, when Ben Maxwell dropped the ball, but recovered quickly. The home side produced a peach of a cross, that wizzed across the Moors goal line to be missed by everyone.
The introduction of Aram Khooshkoo had an immediate effect. Within five minutes he had made it three, and four minutes later a Gill pass secured his second. Four nil was a comfortable score for the Moors, with 20 minutes to go. They kept going forward with little thought of keeping possession and seeing the clock run down.
The afternoon was tarnished for the Moors when Hampton managed a goal in injury time. Yet more was to come when McNally made it five, after a run from his own half.
After the match manager Sam Manoochehri was annoyed about conceding the goal, but happy with the result. “It was a convincing win,” he said.
McNally and Barkers shone at the back, as did Gill and Bennett in midfield.
This win ought to be a platform for the young Moors to make a real push up the table in the final part of the season.
Moors: Maxwell; McNally; Sephton (17); Jones (Ikwa); Kendrick; Barkers; Gill; Binner (Andrews); Mahmood (46)(Khooshkoo (66&70)); Bennett; Martin. Subs unused: Biddle & Thomas
Next Match: Saturday 19th January 2019 Away at Lane Head, KO 2pm. At the Old Red Lion Ground, Somerfield Road, Bloxwich, Walsall WS3 2EH
Next Home Match: Saturday 26th January 2019 v Coventry Alvis KO 3pm at The Trevor Brown Memorial Ground, Church Road, Boldmere, Sutton Coldfield, B73 5RY. Adults £4 including Matchday Programme, Under 16s £1.