Tough experience for Boro’s brave youngsters

As expected Boro’s starting eleven comprised of mostly Academy players boosted by Keith Emmerson and Eddie Smith.

Brandon Norris was in goal and others who have featured in the recent past, mainly off the bench, included Jamal Batchilly, Sam Shaban and Lewis Hayden.

Fleet Town made a number of changes, we were told, from the team which were narrowly beaten 3-2 by Hanwell Town on Saturday.

Nevertheless, their side packed a good deal more experience.

The game started on time and the young Boro’ side were stunned when James Scott put the home side ahead after just 57 seconds. Fleet Town 1-0 Farnborough.

In fairness, this early reverse could have opened the floodgates, but to their credit Boro’ got on with the job and had one or two promising forays into the opposition half.

Having forced a corner on the right expectations were raised, but the Fleet Town defence were happy to hoof the cross away.

After 12 minutes disaster struck and Eddie Smith was in a collision in the 6 yard box which saw him go down.

After a good five minutes of attention it was clear he could not continue and he was stretchered from the field.

Initial diagnosis (discovered at Half Time) was leaning towards a broken ankle. He was taken to Hospital by ambulance and at the time of writing the final outcome is still awaited.

Luccas Ferrett replaced Smith on 19 minutes.

The game continued with the home side largely on top, but Boro’ didn’t give up and were at least competing.

A further blow for Boro’ came when Keith Emmerson, who had received a knock earlier, was forced to come off and was replaced by Andrew Pearson on 34 minutes.

Almost immediately Fleet Town doubled their advantage when Taylor Watts took a quick free kick from the edge of the area with the Boro’ defence still getting organised. The kick went through the ‘wall’ and although Norris got a hand to the ball he couldn’t prevent it going in after 35 minutes. Fleet Town 2-0 Farnborough.

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Fleet Town’s Taylor Watts drills home a free-kick from distance

Aiden White was booked for Boro’ along with a Fleet Town player.

Pat Cox missed a good chance to increase Fleet Town’s lead when he skied a shot well over from 12 yards.

Five minutes of additional time were played at the end of the First Half.

HALF TIME: Fleet Town 2-0 Farnborough

In the circumstances the Boro’ youngsters had done pretty well to stay in touch with their rather more experienced opposition.

The Second Half finally started at 8:51pm with both sides having been out and waiting the arrival of the Officials (to ironic cheers).

Early in Norris made a good save at the foot of a post, but it was more of a contest and Jordan Goater had a good run before being muscled out of it in the area.

A Scott effort flew much to high and then Norris shepherded a curler from Watts safely past his post.

Fleet Town replaced Rob Carr with Archie Fawcett on 67 minutes.

Brandon Norris made two good saves in the space of a minute as Fleet Town put further pressure on the Boro’ defence.

The first low down to his left from Parker, then a low shot from a Cox free kick on the edge of the area.

Sam Shaban made way for Ioannis Ntma for Farnborough on 76 minutes.

Watts’ shot on the turn but past the post and Goater came nearest to a shot on target for Boro’, following a good run by Ferrett but was just too high.

Fleet Town made a final change replacing Brett Stanley with Alan Davis on 83 minutes.

Pat Cox got a third for Fleet Town in stoppage time after a good run and pass from Cadette on 93 minutes. Fleet Town 3-0 Farnborough.

FULL TIME: Fleet Town 3-0 Farnborough

A fairly predictable outcome, but the young Boro’ side were by no means disgraced and never gave up.

The experience will do them no harm and I would not be surprised if one or two of them were to feature again at some stage.

Lets hope for some better news of Eddie and that Keith can make it for Saturday against Barnstaple Town in the F.A. Trophy.

Come on you Yelloowsaa!!

Match Report by Tony Duff.

Speaking after the game, First Team Coach, Marc Wardley said: “Tonight the boys done well, the boys held their own despite the score line may suggest against a First Team.”

“Done the Academy proud tonight. I was proud. We were really unlucky.”

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