Moulton College 2 AFC Rushden & Diamonds / MAA U18 3

AFC Rushden & Diamonds U18 / MAA continued their unbeaten run in 2015, by coming from behind to beat Moulton College 3-2.

Diamonds were without captain Ryan Kirk and striker Luke Garner, who has recently been in terrific goal scoring form.

The scholars suffered a nightmare start, as just 30 seconds on the clock, Rhys Redding was already picking the ball out the back of his net.

Moulton had played a long ball forward from kick off, and the Diamonds back line was unable to clear their lines. A mix up at the back then resulted in the home striker to take advantage and put Moulton   1-0 up.

However despite playing poorly, Diamonds got an equaliser after ten minutes. The ball was played into Nathan Weeks’ feet and the first real bit of quality resulted in a goal. He turned away from his marker and finished into the bottom corner to make it 1-1.

But the scholars’ day went from bad to worse after 35 minutes. Once again, Diamonds were punished as they weren’t performing at their best and they found themselves 2-1 down. Moulton fully deserved to be leading at the break.

To make matters worse, goalkeeper Redding went off injured after 40 minutes after feeling a sore back. Rhys Barnes came on to replace him.

Half Time. Moulton College 2-1 AFC Rushden & Diamonds U18 / MAA.

After manager Darren Purse had undoubtedly given stern words at half time, Diamonds looked slightly better, and seemed to dominate the game. Moulton were restricted to counter attacks. Diamonds have some good chances up until the equaliser but the goalkeeper held firm.

Finally Diamonds’ made their dominance count. Still perhaps undeserved, Matty Pinder got the MAA lads out of trouble with 14 minutes left to play. Following a goal mouth scramble, Pinder was on hand to fire into the corner to make it 2-2. 

The equaliser seemed to spur the scholars on to go and get the winner. And they did just that on 90 minutes. Harrison Desborough’s set pieces had been a real threat all game and, finally, the scholars made one count. Following an inswinging Desborough corner, Chris Knapp had time to control the ball inside the box and tap it in to give Diamonds an unlikely and undeserved victory.

Full Time. Moulton College 2-3 AFC Rushden & Diamonds U18 / MAA.

Team: Redding, Peaks (c), Kearney, Knapp, Uddin, Ackroyd, Ivett, Desborough, Hewett, Weeks, Pinder.

Subs: Barnes, Roache, Leeson, Grundy.

Manager Darren Purse said: “Today wasn’t good enough. There’s no excuses for that performance, whether it was because they had a week off (half term) doesn’t matter. We weren’t good enough. Moulton fully deserved to win the game, but look, we’ve grounded out this result despite not being at our best. They need to learn from their mistakes, so we’ll watch the match video over the next few days, and make sure we’re better and ready for a couple of tough games coming up.”

AFC Rushden & Diamonds

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