Football Management & Technology

Colliers Wood 3 Horsham 4: U18s MATCH REPORT


1st September 2022
FA Youth Cup Preliminary Round
Colliers Wood United v Horsham

For those of a certain vintage grey hairs are a fact of life, for those who haven’t arrived there yet, this game certainly would have expedited the process!

The magic of the cup they say. No one mentions the tension, the stress and the relief and those hardy souls that made the long journey to south west London to Colliers Wood United’s Wibberdune home were certainly put through the gamut of those emotions as Horsham stormed into a 4-0 lead before the hour only to be pegged back by a young, inexperienced but highly spirited and talented Wood side that so nearly took the tie to the lottery of a penalty shoot-out.

Rob Semark named a 16 man squad and made one enforced change to the starting line up from the opening Isthmian Youth League victory against Burgess Hill Town the week before. J Hayes came in for the injured S Ahmed in midfield and joining the squad on the bench came in A Tsongui and M Morris.

Despite the long journey, the squad arrived in good time on a pleasant, warm, evening at the Wibberdune, a tidy little ground tucked in between the A3 and Raynes Park Vale, close to Wimbledon, and were greeted with a very well maintained grass pitch that sloped significantly at one end.

‘Wood got the game underway but it was the Hornets that struck the opening blow in the 3rd minute. A direct ball forward saw R Yoro Thomas muscle his way between two defenders, one of which could only haul him down some 25 yards out marginally to the left of goal. Up stepped J Archard to curl a good, low, strike around the defensive wall and into the bottom right hand corner of the goal despite Powell getting a hand to the ball.

Far from being rocked by conceding so early ‘Wood then worked a fine opportunity of their own rattling G Edgley’s left hand post 5 minutes later with a rasping shot from 25 yards out but Horsham extended their lead on 11 minutes thanks to a combination of defensive indecisiveness and opportunism.

With the ball in his hands Edgley’s drop kick bounced just outside of the ‘D’ of the penalty area and, with hesitancy between the ‘Wood defenders and an on rushing Powell, T Pereira-Leeatin gleefully took the opportunity to poke the ball away from all three and into the unguarded net to double the Hornets lead.

For the next 20 minutes or so, the game entered a scrappy period where both sides struggled to get the ball under control and work any clear cut chances. Despite the good coverage of grass, the hard pitch was making the bounce of the ball unpredictable and it wasn’t until a corner in the 30th minute that F Knight had the ball in the back of the net from close range for Horsham only to see the assistant correctly rule it out for offside.

Minutes later ‘Wood worked a good opportunity of their own after Horsham had given away another free-kick in a dangerous area. Using their obvious aerial threat the ball in was met with a thumping header which Edgley did brilliantly well to push onto his left post. Soon after, in what was a good spell for ‘Wood, Edgley was pushing another good strike away for a corner. Despite the warnings, Horsham continued to concede free-kicks in dangerous situations but were to end the half adding to the scoreline moments before the break.

Picking up the ball on the halfway line, B Walters strode confidently forward and fed E Moteane wide on the left where the diminutive left-back made good progress, cutting in past his marker before, from a narrow angle, striking an unstoppable low shot across Powell into the far corner.

H/T: Colliers Wood United 0 Horsham 3

The quality of play from both sides improved after the break and on 49 minutes Horsham scored the goal that should have put the game to bed. A lovely, flowing, move saw Hayes pick the ball up in midfield and play in Yoro Thomas down the left who, in turn, slid the ball across the 6 yard box for the onrushing Pereira-Leeatin to roll in with ease.

Less than 2 minutes later ‘Wood grabbed themselves a lifeline from yet another set-piece free-kick driven in from the right. Loading the 6 yard box the loose ball was poked beyond Edgley for close range by L Pickard. Soon Edgley had to be alert to tip over smartly before referee Ann took the name of a ‘Wood player (difficult to tell who with black numbers on blue shirts) for upending Yoro Thomas in the centre circle.

Minutes after ‘Wood had made their first change of the night, Semark chose to introduce changes of his own. Two goal Pereira-Leeatin was replaced by J Wallace and I Hazouza made way for M Morris.

A further change for ‘Wood followed before Horsham’s B Walter went into Ann’s book for a late challenge and it was Ann that was to be the focus of the Hornets’ ire as he awarded ‘Wood a penalty in the 70th minute.

From another set-piece, two ‘Wood players appeared to run into each other, one falling to the ground with alacrity! Ann pointed immediately to the spot and, despite vociferous protestations, ‘Wood converted the resultant spot-kick to half the deficit.

Yoro Thomas then made way for S Zagdouni in the 73rd minute before ‘Wood created a gilt-edged chance which Horsham were relieved to see spurned. A raking ball from the left eluded everyone except the ‘Wood forward at the far post who couldn’t quite get sufficient contact on the ball to turn it past Edgley.

The goal did arrive however shortly after and made for a very nervy last 5 minutes, and 5 minutes of added time, for those in amber and green. Further indecisive defending from a corner saw the ball poked in from close range and, visibly lifted ‘Wood raced to put the ball back on the centre spot.

Despite the nerves, on the touchlines at least, Horsham played out the final few minutes confidently winning throw-ins, corners and free-kicks deep in their opponents’ half. Moteane hit a post before Wallace curled narrowly over while Zagdouni ended the game with a caution to his name after getting a little too personal with Powell in the ‘Wood goal while chasing down a through ball.

Semark conducted a muted post match debrief relieved to have made it into the 1st qualifying round but would have left his charges in no doubt that they could easily have thrown this chance away.

The Hornets will host Jersey Bills in the 1st qualifying round, w/c 12th September.


1.G Edgley
2.J Archard
3.E Moteane
4.F Knight
5.B Walters
6.E Ndhlovu
7.J Barlow
8.I Hazouza
9.R Yoro Thomas
10.J Hayes
11.T Pereira-Leeatin


12.A Tsoungui
14.J Clay
15.M Morris for 11
16.S Zagdouni for 9
17.J Wallace for 8

Manager’s MotM – T Pereira-Leeatin – Took both his goals in a very cool fashion

Match report by Shaun Scott


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