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Under-18s

Last-gasp U18s through in cup

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AFC Bournemouth AFC Bournemouth

Matt Burgess struck with the last kick of the game as the under-18s fought to the last and beat Plymouth Argyle 2-1 in the Youth Alliance Cup.

Aaron Roberts pounced on a rebound to open the scoring for the visitors, Ali Mansary leveling later as the first half ended all square.

In a competitive match the game seemed destined to go straight to penalties, until a well-worked move deep into added time ended with Burgess blasting home inside the area.

With a number of players seeing action with the under-21s at Wycombe 24 hours earlier, manager Alan Connell was short of several of his regulars as the game kicked off in mild but wet conditions at Bolitho Park, home of Plymouth Parkway FC.

Joe Besant claimed a header right under his bar as the hosts made the early running in the heavy pitch, though after 11 minutes it was the Cherries who made the most of their first opening.

Marcus Daws was quickly onto a loose defensive pass, fashioning room for a shot from a tight angle, parried by ‘keeper Tyler Coombes but only into the path of Roberts who slotted home from close range.

Angel Wariuh delivered a inswinging free-kick for Plymouth which evaded everyone and forced Besant into an excellent reactive save, while continuing to profit from individual errors by the hosts a Daws penalty appeal at the other end was waved away by the referee.

A trick soon set left-back Noa Boutin on a run into the area, his low cross just out of reach of Roberts.

Rhys Shirley dribbled along the byline to tee up Scott Crocker, the home frontman firing wastefully wide, Plymouth finding the equaliser with ten minutes of the half remaining when defender Mansary stooped to head a centre in via the underside of the bar.

Coombes was quick to dive at the feet of Boutin as the Cherries were instantly back on the offensive, the same opponents soon at it again as a fantastic surge ended with a powered shot that the ‘keeper palmed away.

Level at the start of the second period, the Cherries exerted more control of the match in the opening minutes after the restart, though they were received to see the offside flag raised when Plymouth found the net.

Matt Burgess came inside but slashed an effort from 20 yards off target, Jack Seddon then heading Jack Wadham’s set piece over the bar.

Forwards Euan Pollock and Jake Adams were introduced as the Cherries chased a winner into the final 15 minutes.

A defensive miscue again almost played into visiting hands and the ball was worked to Pollock, but unable to catch his shot cleanly the ‘keeper saved from the striker.

The match became stretched but neither side looked like they would be able to open up the crucial opportunity needed as the match entered added time.

That was until Burgess popped up, converting from eight yards and sparking fierce Cherries celebrations as he ran onto a low ball centred from the right side with the final attack of the contest.

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