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Sat 07
Reading City U23
First Team
A game of two halves as United finish with a win

A game of two halves as United finish with a win

By bernard carvell
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This was definitely a game of two halves as Marlow cruised into a four goal lead before conceding three in a frantic second half

Picture. Scorer of two goals James Przybylak
Marlow achieved a league double over City U23's with this 4-3 win but the plain facts don't tell the story of this topsy turvy match.
The visitors arrived with a full squad of 16 players for this final league game of the season with one main change being the return of keeper Luke Gibbs for his first game since early October.
Played on what could be best described as an uneven surface it was United who threatened early, Theo Alexander breaking through the City defence inside the first minutes, his shot lacked pace and was cleared of the line.
The hosts settled into a flowing passing game with United looking the more dangerous with quick counters and it was from such a break that they took the lead on 9 minutes with the dangerous Abdel El Jalaoui collecting a throw in on the right before taking the ball to the City bye line and crossing for James Pzybylak to head home.
Goals change games and Marlow began to look the dominant team doubling their lead 15 minutes later as Ted Draper found El Jalaoui , this
time the forward skipping past two defenders and firing home into the far corner.
Ten minutes later two became three after an interchange between Alexander and Draper saw the latter pick out Pzybylak who took a couple of strides and guided a left foot effort past keeper Howard.
Keeper Luke Gibbs was enjoying a relatively quiet half as City rarely threatened his goal, their best chance coming on 36 minutes with Tyson firing wide when free on goal.
Marlow felt they should have been awarded a penalty in added on time with Alexander winning the ball in the area only to be pulled down in the process of shooting, it certainly looked a foul to all but the referee.
Half time arrived with the visitors in complete control with their youthful opponents looking a little shell shocked.
That shock was only heightened inside three minutes of the commencement with Luke Mantle crossing to the edge of the area where George Goode smashed home the ball for number four.
The game looked well and truly over especially with Goode guiding the ball over the line after Anton Nicol's shot came off the metalwork only to have his effort ruled offside.
Manager Letts made a total of five second half changes giving all the squad a chance of a run out such was the confidence that the destination of the points was in the bag.
Maybe it was the wholesale substitutions that changed the course of the proceedings as City began a fightback on the hour.
That the ball took a wicked bounce as Alex Blandford went to clear gave City's Jehmiel McNeil a free run on goal ending with the ball in the United net.
The hosts doubled their score 4 minutes later with a quick break allowing McNeil to find the net again, the game began to take on a different complexion.
Marlow were struggling to contain the hosts, to many passes going astray , to many tackles being lost as they struggled to contain City .
On 70 minutes Goode attempted an ambitious free kick from around 30 yards, the ball being blocked before City swept upfield with Reuven Heffernan swooping for the third goal.
A head injury to Marlow's Nicol resulted in a lengthy stoppage , the player having to leave the field with a nasty gash to his scalp before the game resumed and the stoppage gave United time to regroup.
The remainder of the game saw them contain their opponents, restricting City in their attempts for the equaliser Luke Sender making one crucial block and Gibbs watching a ball bounce high over the bar.
The official played an added 15 minutes before ending proceedings with Marlow happy to finish the season on a winning note.
We can all look forward to a few weeks break before it all starts again.
FT 4-3
Gibbs, Foster, L Mantle, Blandford, Senda, L Draper (c) Goode, Braim, El Jalaoui, Przybylak,Alexander
Subs. Austin, Nicol, Baldwin, Hoyte, J Mantle.
J Przybylak 9, 35
A El Jalaoui 24
G Goode 49
L Senda
L Mantle

Abdel El Jalaoui

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Match date

Sat 07, May 2022