Leyton Orient U18 2-0 Barnet U18 15.03.14
An efficient display from Leyton Orient U18s saw them power to a 2-0 victory over Barnet.
With the first team set for a hugely important contest against Brentford at E10 the U18s kicked off at a slightly earlier time than normal, as a strike from Andys Nikolau and a Keir Dickinson own goal ensured the team returned to winning ways.
The O’s appeared hesitant during the opening minutes as Barnet fashioned the first opportunity of the game. Jack Taylor’s defence splitting pass took both Alex Finney and Nikolau out of the game and presented Shane Cojocarel with a wonderful chance, but Ben Bridle-Card produced a sublime save to divert away a shot that seemed destined for the top corner.
Orient’s attack saw them start the match with the nimble pairing of Scott Kashket and Sinclaire Sandy, and the latter used his trickery to draw a foul from the Barnet defence on 14 minutes. From the resulting set-piece Josh Uzun’s in-swinging delivery found Nikolau at the far post, who took advantage of his tall frame to head the hosts into a 1-0 lead.
The O’s now resembled a confident-looking outfit as they came close to doubling their lead. The diminutive Kashket released a lovely ball that allowed sandy to head for goal, though his eventual shot flew just wide of the near post.
Although the home side seemed comfortable as half time loomed, their lead remained a precarious one, with the Bees giving a reminder of the potential threat they posed through chances for Brendan Ocran and Cojocarel.
Orient were lively during the early moments of the second half, with Sandy a continued thorn in the opposition’s side. The striker was alert to take advantage of Ocran’s square pass and bear down on goal, but goalkeeper Dillon Barnes pounced on a heavy touch in the box.
Not long after the same player delightfully skipped away from a couple of challenges on the edge of the area but failed to pick out an Orient player with his cross.
With the O’s creating the lion’s share of chances a second goal seemed not long in waiting, and it duly arrived in the 53rd minute. Substitute Shola Oladipo had made a real impact since his introduction, and he did extremely well to slice a through ball into the path Uzun, whose low strike hit the post before rebounding off the unfortunate Dickinson and into the net.
The home side continued to create chances during the final 20 minutes, with Oladipo coming close on a couple of occasions to grabbing a goal that his performance merited.
But despite not managing to add to the score line Orient did ensure that there was no way back for Barnet, bouncing back from defeat at Southend in the perfect manner.
“I think hard work was an important factor in today’s result,” declared Oladipo.
“My aim is to always try and produce something for the team whenever I play, and I’m happy to have played a role in the second goal. But more importantly I’m pleased that the team could bounce back after last week’s defeat and return to winning ways.”
Orient: Ben Bridle-Card, Sam Ling, Jack Humphrey (Kane Adams, 67), Lawson Okameji, Alex Finney (C), Andys Nikolau, Freddy Moncur, Montel Ageymang (Nick Brown, 73), Sinclaire Sandy, Scott Kashket (Shola Oladipo, 32), Josh Uzun
Goals: Nikolau (14), Dickinson OG (53)
Barnet: Dillon Barnes, Brendan Ocran, (Nana Emmanuelle, 78), James Charles (C), Freddie Levenfiche (Alfie Cain, 58), Harry Taylor, Keir Dickinson, Shane Cojocarel, Jack Taylor, Moses Duckrell, John Castirlanco (Yasin Bin El-Mhanni, 27), Fumnaya Shomotun. Subs not used: Kai Mckenzie-Lyle, Carlito Lawton